Whenever, a customer looks for buying a product say laptop, refrigerator, car, AC or mobile phone, he/she has end number of options. So making a choice is a bit difficult, but one can narrow down the list, based on the features and the benefits after deciding the amount he/she would like to spend.
Features of the product define the product characteristics, which can be technical, physical or descriptive. On the contrary, benefits give the reasons to the customers for buying the product or service, i.e. in what sense the product is useful for them or what improvement it can make in their lives.
In this context, we are going to discuss the differences between features and benefits.
Content: Features Vs Benefits
|Basis for Comparison||Features||Benefits|
|Meaning||Features refer to a statement which describes the capabilities or qualities of the product.||Benefits are the outcomes derived by the customers after using the product/service.|
|Shows||Facts and Specifications||Relatability and emotional connection|
|Provides||Details about your product or service||Enhancement to the life or business of the customer|
|Lies in||The product itself.||The life of the customer.|
Definition of Features
The features of a product are its characteristics in terms of appearance, components, traits and properties (form, weight, size, odour, material, colour) which adds value to the end-user, as well as it ensures product differentiation, which helps in enhancing its appeal to the prospective buyers.
It is the actual, technical, physical aspect or function of the product. It can be anything about the product or its design which is important. It specifies:
- What is it composed of?
- What it contains?
- How is it packaged?
- What’s new or different about it?
- How does it work?
It is the attribute which is capable of meeting customers needs, and it can be used as a product marketing strategy which emphasizes the usefulness of the product to the target audience.
Hence, any statement which talks about what a product is or has, including the colour, components and technical specifications. They are the physical characteristics of the product which adds trustworthiness and substance to your product.
Definition of Benefits
Product benefits are the list of advantages that the product offers, which satisfies the needs, expectations, wants and desires of the customers. It is something which the manufacturer promises that the customer will get by using the product. Hence, it gives the reasons to customers, for buying the product.
It can be in the form of cost, convenience, usability, productivity, efficiency, sustainability, status, values, quality, character, etc. Further, it must be noted that the benefit of the product is because of its features.
In finer terms, benefits describe the final outcome received when the customer uses the product. It reflects the improvement made in the customer’s life or the solutions provided to the customer’s problems. It either determines the usefulness of the product or the satisfaction derived by the customer by using the product.
Types of benefits
- Actual benefits: It covers the product’s performance, design and cost-effectiveness.
- Perceived Benefits: It covers products popularity, image or reputation.
Key Differences Between Features and Benefits
The points given below are substantial so far as the difference between features and benefits are concerned:
- The feature is basically the characteristic or specification of the company’s offering, i.e. it describes something which the offering is or has. Conversely, a benefit is nothing but the value or outcome, which the company’s offering creates to the customer.
- A feature describes “what” your product is/has/does. In contrast, the benefit is “why” the product feature is significant and relevant to the prospective customer.
- The product features are based on factual information, whereas the product benefits tend to create an emotional connection with the target audience so that they can easily relate to the product.
- The product features can state the details, whether it is physical, technological or functional. On the contrary, the product benefits explain the improvements, comfort or value it can add to the customer’s life.
- While the feature lies in the product itself, or in other words, features are possessed by the product, but benefit lies in the customer’s life i.e. in the form of solution to various issues, ease in performing work, satisfaction, etc.
To sum up the discussion we can say that practically what is sold in the market are the benefits of the product and not its features, as features are only talked about to explain the benefits one can receive. This is because of the fact that customers show more interest in benefits, as compared to its specifications, i.e. features.
The success of the product or service relies greatly on how well a company describes and shares its features and benefits to the customers.