A refresh is as good as a change…

Why consider a product refresh?

Some CEM customers subscribe to the view that “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it” when it comes to their electronic products. Whilst this means that some manufacturers will benefit from loyal customers who will require the same products or components for many years, such devotion to older, outdated products can also provide a complex dilemma: to carry on supporting a loyal customer base but see a previously lucrative product or component line decline, or change to something completely new and experience the associated time,  costs and risks needed to launch a brand-new product.

Whilst some manufacturers may baulk at the thought of changing a tried and tested product, a product refresh process, rather than a full product redesign can provide the solution in terms of cost, effort and return. An expert design team can often successfully bridge the gap between customer perceptions of a product and the need to keep pace with new technology, materials and processes. This allows the creative process to flow, giving dated electronic products a new lease of life without alienating a currently satisfied customer base. It can also identify ways in which overall unit costs could be reduced with the introduction of new materials, processes and technology.

As a product manufacturer, you may have a steady group of loyal customers who are with you because you provide the dated yet in demand products they know. Working out how best to bring the technology of the product they love into the 21st century, without alienating the end user completely, can be a challenge. This is where a design team with the foresight to know which technology is going to be of benefit and the technical know-how to work out how it can be best incorporated (into existing products with minimal disruption and maximum benefit to the end user), can be a real asset.

How do I approach a product refresh?

Of course, continued innovation and advances are important for overall future product development and business growth, but a well-managed product refresh can give a product line a new lease of life, without the time and costs normally associated with a new product launch.

Although some more dated products may still sell well and just need a tweak or two to bring them in line with a more modern look, process or functionality, others may not be selling as well and could be in danger of being completely obsolete in a relatively short length of time. In both of these circumstances, with some key design input, the product could be remodelled into profitable additions to an existing range. An experienced electronics design team will be able to look at your products in the context of the market as a whole, using a customised combination of techniques to come up with ways of reinventing a core product line. Completed with an eye on value and quality at every stage of the process, the aim is to come up with a new twist on an old design, transforming into something which a contemporary audience will find engaging. To put it simply, it’s possible to give your range a cost-effective revamp that could not only increase your market share, but also widen your product mix and provide a welcome boost to customer loyalty along the way.

Interested in finding out if a refresh is the right route for your products? Our FermionX design team is here to help you explore the options. Just contact us on 01903 524600 or drop us an email at sales@fermionx.com.

Posted in Business.