The product mix (also called product assortment) is the complete set of all products and items a particular seller offers for a sale. According to American Marketing Association, “Product Mix is the composed of products offered for sale by a firm or a business unit.”
A product mix consists of various product lines:
Product mix width
The width of product mix refers to the number of product lines that a company offers to the consumers. The diagram above shows that Cadbury offers wide range of products like chocolates, biscuits, beverages, candles, gums, etc.
Product mix length
The length of product mix refers to the total number of products or items that a company carries within its product line. In the given diagram, Cadbury has five products. Hence, the length of product mix is 5.
Product line depth
It refers to how many variants are offered to each product in the line. The variants include size, color, flavors and other distinguishing characteristics. The above diagram shows that Cadbury offers wide range of products within its chocolate brand viz. Diary milk, Celebration, Bourneville, 5 Star, Perk, Gems, etc.
Product mix consistency
The consistency of a company’s product mix refers to how many closely related various product lines are in end use, production requirements, and distribution channels or in other way.
The following chart clearly depicts the product mix:
To be successful in marketing, the business enterprises need carefully planned market strategies for managing their product mixes. The major product-mix strategies are as follows:
The product mix expansion is accomplished by increasing the number of lines or the depth within a particular line and / or the number of lines a firm offers to customers. When a company adds a similar item to an existing product line with the same brand name, this is termed as line extension. When a company adds a new product line is added to the company’s present assortment, it is known as mix-expansion. Under a mix-extension strategy, the new line may be related or unrelated to the current products.
The purpose of this type of strategy is to eliminate low-profit products and to get more profit from fewer products. Thus, it is carried out either by eliminating the entire line or by simplifying the assortment within a line. Usually, a company eliminates those lines which contribute less profit in the long run. So, the intended result of product mix contraction is higher profit from fewer products.
Alteration of existing product
This focuses on improving an established product rather than developing a completely new product. For an organization, it is more profitable and less risky than developing a completely new one. Alteration may be made either in the design, size, colour, texture or flavor or in the packaging, or in the use of raw materials, or in the advertising appeal, or the brand manager may bring a change in quality level.
Positioning is a marketing strategy through which marketers try to establish an image or identity in the minds of their target market in regard to their product, brand or company. It is an act of designing a firm’s product and image to attain a significant place in the minds of its target market. Its’ purpose is to make a brand occupy a distinct position, relative to competing brands, in the mind of the customer so that potential benefits for firm can be maximized.