At its core is a tremendous increase in variety and customization without a corresponding increase in costs. At its limit, it is the mass production of individually customized goods and services. At its best, it provides strategic advantage and economic value. In reference to technological products, the following statement of Piyush Mathur is illuminating here:. Mass customization is the method of "effectively postponing the task of differentiating a product for a specific customer until the latest possible point in the supply network".
They found that users perceive greater usefulness and enjoyment with a mass customization interface vs. Similarly, McCarthy , p. This degree of mass customization, however, has only seen limited adoption. If an enterprise's marketing department offers individual products atomic market fragmentation it doesn't often mean that a product is produced individually, but rather that similar variants of the same mass-produced item are available. Additionally, in a fashion context, existing technologies to predict clothing size from user input data have been shown to be not yet of high enough suitability for mass customisation purposes.
Companies that have succeeded with mass-customization business models tend to supply purely electronic products. However, these are not true "mass customizers" in the original sense, since they do not offer an alternative to mass production of material goods. Pine II described four types of mass customization: He suggested a business model, "the 8. Just pay attention to what your customers are creating and this will tell you a story.
Hallmark did it with Christmas cards, Blue Nile did it with diamond engagement rings. Very different price points, both huge successes. To quote Custom Nation: This becomes a cycle of success, because the more internet users that visit your site and the more time they spend on your site gives you a higher ranking on Google for related product searches. Also, by having a strong online presence, you can form a personal connection with your buyers and ultimately with their social media connections.
Popularity is the biggest achievement in the online social world. This approach is ideal for a client-base that has different expectations from the product in different situations and occasions. With the availability of technology, clients can easily customize the products on their own. Its clients can make use of its lighting systems to develop the required mood at home or to maximize productivity during the work hours through a wide range of available switches.
The design of this lighting system enables clients to create different moods for reading, romantic moments or lively parties. It does so by connecting different lights together and enabling the clients to select the effects. Cosmetic customizers advertize a standard product differently to different groups of clients. This approach works well when clients use the same product but want them to be presented differently.
Such products are not customized but instead they are packaged differently to suit different kinds of customers. Although this type of customization is, as its name suggests; cosmetic, it offers great value to a lot of clients.
Each year, clients spend billions of dollars on products such as named sweatshirts and T-shirts. The Planters Company Nabisco made use of cosmetic customization to fulfill dissimilar merchandising requirements of its retail clients.
As compared to Dominick, Jewel demanded diverse promotional packages while Wal-Mart demanded more mixed nuts and peanuts as compared to 7-Eleven and Safeway. The standard packages of Planters only included small, medium, and large sized cans in the past. However, now the company can easily switch between diverse shipping containers, labels, and sizes to satisfy the demands of its customers. Transparent Customization deals with providing customized products to individual clients without telling them that the products are exclusively produced for them.
Its industrial soap that can be used for commercial uses like a factory floor cleaning and car washing was whole-heartedly accepted by the market when it launched. ChemStation also analyzes the washing requirements of each customer and produces suitable detergents for them. It is true that mass customization caters to the masses, but that does not mean that it is only meant for big corporations and brands. In fact, it provides a lot of assistance, food-for-thought and motivation to entrepreneurs as well.
First and foremost, as you apply the concept of mass customization to the designing process, as an entrepreneur you will have a remarkable amount of creativity to deal with. It refines the design phase and modifies it to satisfy the customers in the best way possible. This concept mainly deals with the consumer and helps entrepreneurs in identifying who their customers are and what are their likes.
Since all customers like to be treated in a special manner, mass customization can bring great business benefits to entrepreneurs if they deal with it in the right manner.
There are different approaches and types of mass customization, and hence entrepreneurs can use this production method in the way that suits them the best. Adaptive customization is probably the most utilized type of mass customization among entrepreneurs, as in this production technique standard products are created which can be customized by the users according to their requirements. Since the customized production only begins when the order is placed, there is a lesser chance of a loss.
The global production industry began with mass production, which focused on producing standardized products for the masses. However, the focus began shifting to the consumers in the 20th Century where all commercial sectors such as retail, service, technology, and manufacturing started taking the likes and dislikes of the consumers very seriously.
This is because the customers were evolving, and the demands began to vary from customer to customer. Currently, the concept of mass customization is being used in businesses like high-end boutiques where exclusive outfits are created for women according to their taste. However, different sectors are also benefiting from it through the usage of technology that is making it easier to create customized products for masses. Majority of the marketing and production experts think that the concept is here to stay.
It does not matter which industry it operates in, latest information technology allows companies to track consumer preferences, and user-friendly manufacturing machinery allows end-products to satisfy those preferences.
An effective distribution and sales system is required to enable customization, as it needs a system through which the product could be channeled to the end customer. In fact, some companies use the distribution method as the mass customization process whereas other companies alter and make modifications to their delivery systems to ensure customization. Companies such as Levi Strauss, The Custom Foot, and Ascot Chang make use of retail models that require them to employ trained and professional sales staff to take custom measurements in the factory outlet of the brand.
After manufacturing, these brands directly ship the customized product to the client. Mass customization requires trained sales representatives at outlets so that the concept can be implemented. On the other hand, there are numerous manufacturers who have adapted mass customization in alternative distribution and sales channels. After years of manufacturing clothing for women, she realized that every woman wanted something different for herself and hence she began customizing for her clients and sending the orders directly to their house.
According to Brenda French, a company needs to have a factory or a production unit in order to mass-customize. Outsourcing the customization process to another company or individual cannot make this process work, according to French.
Mass customization is an important business concept, which numerous brands are adopting these days. Moreover, the concept is also utilized in the development of marketing strategies for product and service lines and during the process of recognizing the target audience of a brand or business.
Free Market Research – Product customization is one of the best tools to understand what your customers want. Flynn talks about Disney and how customization made the entertainment group realize that they should launch a whole new merchandising line, which brought in huge revenues.
Mass customization is the new frontier in business for both manufacturing and service industries. At its core is a tremendous increase in variety and customization without a corresponding increase in costs. He is the co-author of The Experience Economy and “The Four Faces of Mass Customization” (HBR January–February ). B. Joseph Pine II is a co-founder of Strategic Horizons. He is the co-author of The Experience Economy and Infinite Possibility: Creating Customer Value on the Digital Frontier.
The mass customization of the product line is an example of the buyer's market where specialization is the new standard. 18 people found this helpful Me and my business partner were practicing mass customization and would make everything for the consumer and their needs at the time. Starting a Business Turn Design-on-Demand Into Profits But those in the mass customization trenches say that in some ways, it's a more efficient way to run a retail business.