Many companies cut corners in a bid to get their product out into the market the fastest. To stay one step ahead of the competition, they rush through the production process to hit the store shelves first. With a strong marketing campaign behind them, they can soon drive sales. However, if the product isn’t up to scratch, a backlash will begin. The modern consumer isn’t stupid, and they will take to social media and online message boards to complain about any shoddy and second-rate products they have purchased. No matter how effective the marketing, if the product falls short, sales will take a nosedive.
As a business owner, you need to put into place rigorous testing methods for your product before your pre-launch campaign. Sometimes, tough decisions will need to be made. After testing, you may discover the product does fail in some way, and you may have to make extensive changes or go back to the drawing board. However, this is better than the harmful alternative. This includes having to go through the process of product recall, which is often highlighted within the media, always on the lookout for a good news story about a failing company, and the negative brand awareness when customers realise your business and product have fallen below accepted standards.
Other reasons for product testing include:
- The durability of your product – Will your product stand the test of time? After extended use, how much wear and tear will befall your product? Real-world factors need to be tested in laboratory conditions before the product rolls off the production line.
- The threat of the competition – If your product is flawed in any way, your business rivals will take the lead if their product is found to be better than what you have produced. Your company needs to keep an eye on the competition, and to outmatch them with better materials and product capabilities.
- The changes in consumer demand – Will the customer accept your product as it currently stands? Research needs to be undertaken through customer testing methods to ensure your product is keeping up with current trends.
- The safety of your product – This is the biggie, as you will face legal action if your product is deemed to be unsafe in any way. Aside from the financial costs to your business, there will also be the psychological effects on you, with the knowledge that your product has caused an injury or fatality to another.
When thinking about product testing, you need to collaborate with those people who can help your business. Take these two factors into consideration.
- The quality of materials you use for your product. As much as you want to ensure your product meets the grade, you should look to companies such as Colonial Metals to supply what you need; those businesses who pay fine attention to detail to what they produce, with credentials and experience to give you peace of mind that your product can be manufactured with high-quality materials.
- The quality of your product testing team. These are the people who have the time and capabilities to test your product within a range of real-life situations to ensure its suitability. You need to stay in touch with the team and listen to the advice they offer, no matter how inconvenient or expensive the cost to your business may be as a consequence of their findings.
It is imperative your product matches and exceeds consumer demand. If it falls short, you will face a loss of sales and incur a bad reputation for your business. Therefore, don’t cut costs or corners, and ensure you focus on product testing to give your customers the quality they expect from you.
*This is a contributed post