Productizing your services – how low can they take you?

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Service pro, are you a product?

Traditionally, services have depended on the task at hand, changing prices in accordance to the time it takes to complete a job and the quality of it. Now, with many services being commoditized, it’s changed the way that business owners and customers are thinking about the future. The emerging trend of the commodity model within service industries has been so powerful that it’s been able to completely disrupt them, ultimately creating a new way that businesses are managed and looked at. Rises in service delivery apps and platforms have brought this to light more than ever by making something like ordering food or laundry as easy as pressing a button. These two types of businesses have greatly benefitted from this model.

Seamless, a food delivery app that allows users to order from restaurants, is a prime example of how easy it is to feed one’s self without even talk to a person on the phone. A user puts in their address and the Seamless app returns a list of restaurants with delivery possible in that area. After putting in the credit card information and selecting what they would like to order through the online menu, it is automatically sent to a specific computer terminal or fax machine at the restaurant. After the restaurant confirms the order with Seamless, the food is prepared and delivered to the user.

In a similar fashion, Washio, a laundry delivery app, has made the dreaded chore of cleaning clothes a task of the past. Through its standardized pricing of $1.39 to $1.70 per pound for wash and fold, with a $15-pound minimum for wash and fold, depending on the city you live in, the app’s commodity model has helped to expand the industry more than just dropping off your clothes at the local laundromat.

Having set prices has proven to be a key component in the online success of some services, and has helped them navigate the fast paced waters of the mobile world. But there are some professions in the service industry that will not benefit from a commodity model.

Certain professions like graphic design or content writing, for example, may not be the best fit for such a standardized way of payment. Platforms like Fiverr haven’t taken this into full consideration. While optimizing a vast amount of industries and helping people make more money, the app also makes the mistake of having all services with commodity pricing. But not all services are created equal and many suffer as a result.

Take, for instance, a graphic designer who is commissioned to create a logo. Commoditizing this service doesn’t take into account the number of hours put into creating the logo. While in some cases it might be a quick and easy job, most of the time the amount of work done is worth much more than the payment received. This ultimately causes the service provided to be looked at the same way as a ready made item one can easily buy, which results in professionals spending less time on their work and creating lower grade results.

In an age where technology is commoditizing so many aspects of our lives, it’s no wonder that services are following this model and businesses will suffer if they don’t adjust to the times. Blue collar professionals are among the ones that are most impacted by this trend and must adjust. House painters, for example, have to assess how long and how expensive a project will be based on multiple factors, like the size of the house, siding material etc. Unfortunately, it’s these kinds of service professionals who are being commoditized, not only causing a frustration over standardized pricing, but giving inaccurate customer expectations as well.

For example, imagine a painter forced to commoditize their business in order to keep up with the times. For one thing, the quality of their work will suffer; from the type of paint they use to the way in which they apply the paint onto the house. Generally, consumers want things to be fast, cheap, and high quality, but the rule of thumb is that you’ll only get two out of the three, at best. Commoditizing businesses might make it virtually impossible.

The future of traditional services can be so bright. If it were up to me, we would see a painter arriving at a job with an iPad and knowing exactly what needs to be done before he even steps through the front door. This painter would be well informed, have constant communication with his clients who know exactly when he will arrive. And, although this painter won’t be commoditized, his clients will have the same experience of buying something that is. But until all professionals make the leap to the technological side, they will be left behind.


About Clipcall:

ClipCall helps people (Customers and Service professionals) handle their projects through a mobile real time collaboration and communication App. They are focused on making the Home projects experience – great.

It is  a mobile market-network for customers to discover pros, real-time collaborate and a fully manage the transaction.

ClipCall also provides Pros a suit of great tools to be much more efficient on the go such as a Real Time video chats to replace unneeded travel for quoting as well as  a generation, tracking and recording of videos, phone calls and texts. It also helps business owners to delegate projects to subcontractors, track employees and teams as well as to reengage with their customers when needed.


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2 comments

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