Product Life Cycles

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Definition

  • Used to describe how long something will last before it wears out.
  • Used to discuss the environmental impact of a product through the stages of it's life from raw materials extraction, to manufacture, use and disposal.
  • Used to describe the stages that a product goes throught from its introduction to it's eventual obsolescence.
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Stages

Introduction

Growth

Maturity

Decline

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Factors Influencing the Life Cycle of a Product

  • Technology Push
  • Demand Pull
  • Sales
  • What the product is
  • How technically complex it is
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Introduction and Launch

When the product is newly released onto the market

At first sales are slow as consumers may not recognise the benefits of a new product

At this stage there are many costs asscoiated with launching a new product and very little profit.

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Growth

As advertising takes effect and consumers see the benefit, sales start to rise, the product begins to diffuse and profits increase

Competitiors may start to introduce their own brand of the product.

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Maturity

Sales begin to level off.

The market becomes saturated with competitior designs that may have different or improved features. Many companies keep new designs to maintain market shares or they have to market aggressively to stay ahead.

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Decline

Market is completely saturated and sales start to fall. Profits fall.

Companies have to decide whether to accept the reduced profit or stop making the product and launch a new one.

As new technology develops, products may become obsolete.

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