Offer of Services by Goods Exporters: Strategic and Marketing Dimensions
Associating services to goods in foreign markets seems to be a very real trend among French exporters. Even if it concerns less than one third of them, it seems to endow them with additional dynamism in these markets. The services which are the most closely linked to the product (after-sales services, technical assistance, transportation, machine setting or maintenance services) are the more commonly provided by exporters. 70 per cent of them add more than one single kind of service to their product. The mainspring of this 'tertiarisation' is the complexity of the product which concerns sectors to very differing degrees. The firm's level of organisation (rather than its size) and its type of exportation are also relevant. Two prevailing logics of product services have been identified: one is the technical environment of the product, the other its logistic environment. The former is closely related to the complexity of products (capital goods) while the latter primarily concerns the other sectors. Marketing objectives are mainly aiming at clients' satisfaction. Less frequent but significant are also some tertiary diversification strategies whereas geographical ones ('tertiarising' in some countries only) are very unusual. For nearly 60 per cent of the concerned firms, 'tertiarisation' of exports remains above all a cost, but some obtain new incomes from tertiary activity: when of course the service offer is conceived, from the beginning, as a branching out into the tertiary sector, but also when the tertiary environment of the product becomes more and more complete.
Volume (Year): 21 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
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