Service Intangibility - Meaning, Importance & Example

Published by MBA Skool Team, Last Updated: September 10, 2021

What is Service Intangibility?

Service Intangibility is a concept which says that services are intangible and they cannot be felt, smelled, tasted, seen or heard before they are bought and experienced.

Intangibility is the virtue by which a customer cannot see the final result before actually buying and using it. There can be reviews, feedback, word of mouth about a service being good or bad but unless a customer doesn't experience it, he or she cannot really know the quality. Unlike a product where the attributes and specifications can be seen, touched, smelled, validated, tested before buying them. Many a times services are supported with tangible physical evidence to make them feel more product like. A token with a number in a queue, or a clean ambience with waiting room are 2 such examples which can improve services.

Importance of Service Intangibility

For a service provider, service intangibility is a critical aspect in designing the service delivery process. A customer has to be convinced about buying a service and then be happy with the quality after using the same. Good feedback from other customers is a good way to add some credibility to the offering but the actual customer experience at the moment of truth would lead to the overall satisfaction with the bought service. Hence a service provider should always keep the aspect of intangibility in mind while designing the service for a customer.


Service Intangibility Example

Examples of this would be a cosmetic surgery where the result of the surgery can’t be seen by the consumer before the surgery. Similarly, airline passengers have no guarantee for a good flying experience or safe arrival of their baggage before the journey.

Therefore, consumers make their decisions under such circumstances by looking for signals that assure service quality like the people, communications, price, equipment and place associated with that service.

Hence, this concludes the definition of Service Intangibility along with its overview.

This article has been researched & authored by the Business Concepts Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

Browse the definition and meaning of more similar terms. The Management Dictionary covers over 2000 business concepts from 5 categories.

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