Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Goods and Services

goodsThere are obvious differences between goods and services that are analyzed based on characteristics of each. A good is a tangible object used either once or repeatedly. A service is intangible. The tangibility differentiator indicates the ability to touch, smell, taste and see which is absent in services. This can be a deterrent to the service receiver  to gauge the quality and dependant on the service company reputation. In the case of goods the ownership of the product is transferable from sellers to buyers, whereas in services there is no ownership involved.

On the quality front, with goods it is homogeneous, once produced the quality is uniform across all line of products. They can be separated from the seller/ provider and not dependant on the source for its delivery to the purchaser. With regard to service it is inseparable from the service provider and heterogeneous, where each time the service is offered it may vary in quality, output, and delivery. It cannot be controlled and is dependant on the human effort in achieving that quality hence is variable from producer, customer and daily basis.

Another key distinction is perishability of services and the non perishability of goods. Goods will have a long storage life and are mostly non perishable. Whereas services are delivered at that moment and do not have a long life or cannot be stored for repeat use. They do not bear the advantage of shelf life as in the case of goods like empty seats in airlines. With the production and consumption taking place simultaneously in services, it differs from goods on simultaneity and the provisions for quality control in the process.

Both goods and services need not be driven by economic motives. Several times goods and services are linked closely and cannot be detached. For example on purchase of a car, the good is the car but the processing, the provision of accessories, after sales activities are all services. It is essential to note that the difference between pure goods and pure services are in contrast but most goods and services exist in between with a mix of both. For instance, in a restaurant, food refers to goods while the service is the waiters offering, the ambience, the setting of tables amongst others.

1. Goods are tangible, and transferable while the services are intangible and non transferable.
2. Goods are separable, and non ‘“ perishable while services are inseparable.
3. Goods are homogeneous while services are heterogeneous.

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  1. You are a sad, sad, lonely man/woman, drowning in a pit of self dismay. God bless you. Amen.

  2. The article “difference between goods and services ” is very interesting, appreciative, the governments are imposing tax on goods and tax on services, suffered by a common man. Differentiation of your article cleared the confusion defined perfectly in respect of goods and services as well with best examples. Most of the countries are collecting tax on goods as Sales Tax on sales of goods and also collecting tax as Service Tax on providing services.The best example given in your article “restaurant” where two types of tax incidents we come across. The Union Government of India introduced service tax and collecting through Central Excise Department. Though your Article is with full information of difference between two, better project legal position of two Tax elements i.e., Sales Tax and Service tax, it may be more useful and understandable to a common man.
    Thanking you sir,
    … M.A.PRASAD.

  3. helped me alot…can you please contrsat between goods and and services giving their market implications?…will appriciate..email me plz

  4. Next time can you please put it into words a year 6 student can understand. I need this for homework and I didn’t understand a single word. Well, a few words I did, but not good enough to put into a sentence for homework. even if I did just copy what was there my teacher would notice that I didn’t hand write it myself. So just a tip for next time, put it into words everyone can understand and process through their brain. 🙂

  5. Great explanation.
    Can you please help me with a better understanding on the effect of goods and services?

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