Product Features VS Benefits (Their Differences And Why It Matters)

If you think that a product’s features and benefits can be interchangeable with one another, then think again.

It’s important to highlight both when marketing products and services to a customer, whether it’s in person, through social media apps like Facebook and Instagram, or by sending emails of your marketing copy to your subscribers.

By understanding the main differences between these two terms, you can properly and effectively communicate your message, and connect with your audience in a brief yet crafty way. But most of all, you may be able to finally convert your audience’s curiosity into cold, hard cash.

What’s A Feature?

In simple terms, a feature refers to what your product is or does. 

For instance, if you’re running a course on decluttering, and you lay out what they’re going to get (10 checklists, 5 videos, and 20 lessons), you’re giving your audience all the features of the course.

Think about features as being the foundation of your marketing strategy. These are the physical attributes that your customer sees that define its functionality and specify what it can do for them.

They’re used to lay out a clear image of what your product or service is all about, provide consumers with the specific information they want and show them that your product is what it is they’re looking for. 

Let’s take Facebook for example. One of the app’s most prominent features is that it offers targeted advertising options, so that you can reach specific demographics based on factors like age, location, and niche. 

So whether you’re selling pre-loved goods on the ol’ Marketplace, or if monetizing through Facebook groups is your cup of tea, presenting the features of your products will let your customers know what they’re getting out of them.

What’s A Benefit?

So now, let’s switch it up a bit by talking about the benefits that your products have to offer.

If the features are what your product or service is, then the benefits are how it can help and improve your customers’ quality of life.

If we go back to that decluttering course example, some of the benefits you may list are about helping remove internal stress, or feeling happy at home, or finally being able to invite friends over again.

These are all benefits of taking action and decluttering.

They talk about why the features matter in the first place, and paint a picture in your customers’ minds of what they’ll (hopefully) experience when they purchase and use your product.

It’s kind of like an open secret, but most people aren’t just shopping for the sake of it.

What they really want is to see whether your product solves their problem or not.

That’s why most marketers go with a benefit-heavy approach to promote their products and services, as this taps into the target audience’s needs and turns them from hesitant customers into consumers.

Features VS Benefits: Which Is Better?

A black and white image of a lady justice weighing scale.

While features talk about the technicalities of your product and describe what they do, benefits are what drive your audience to make a decision and hammer down that purchase. 

When people make a purchase, remember that the most critical question that’s always at the forefront of their minds iswhat’s in it for me?

Let’s say, for instance, you’re selling a fitness tracker that you put all of your time and money on. You could create a whole list of all the technical specifications, like a step counter, heart rate monitor, and even GPS tracking.

But what’s really going to sell the gadget to both fitness freaks and couch potatoes alike are long-term advantages they provide.

This could be the motivation to be (and stay) active, accountability to meet fitness goals, and a sense of accomplishment when you reach each milestone that you achieve in your fitness journey. 

By emphasizing the benefits, you’re directly speaking to your audience’s emotions, urging them to take action and choose your services over your competitors. 

While features and benefits work hand-in-hand, ultimately, it all comes down to knowing your target audience and understanding their needs to cater to them as accurately as possible. Once you’ve got that down, you should be able to know what they want and market to them effectively. 

So, while you’re brainstorming on your marketing strategies, remember to stress both features and benefits, but especially the emotional impact and value that your product or service brings to your customers’ lives.

When Should I Market The Features?

Two people in a business setting, one in a business suit and one in a business casual attire brainstorming about potential marketing strategies.

By now, you should already have a solid grasp of the basics of features and benefits, as well as what they are, why they matter, and how they differ. 

They’re both crucial in marketing, providing valuable information to guide your target audience through their purchasing journey, from price and design to its relevance in the real world. 

Sometimes, deciding whether to emphasize either features or benefits in your marketing approach can be a bit of a dilemma, depending on the product at hand. 

Take, for instance, a feature-driven approach, which shines in certain scenarios like…

If You’re Already In A Saturated Market

What this basically means is that, if the products or services you’re offering also have a million different other people selling the same thing, then you can gain just the right amount of competitive edge that you need in order to stand out.

However, do take note to only do this if your target audience already knows the benefits without having the need to explain it to them.

Why?

So that you can avoid sounding like a broken record and vomit out the same dialogue that they’ve probably already heard a thousand times before. 

For instance, let’s say that you’re pitching the latest car model to a group of interested buyers. By listing off the unique features that it has to offer, like swivel seats or a drowsiness detection system for when you feel sleepy on the road, it’ll work wonders to differentiate you from other brands that sell their own models with the same price points.

By doing this, it not only saves everybody’s time and energy, but it also helps us focus on the features that truly matter.

If You’re Catering Towards A Niche

A ‘niche’ is typically defined as a small group of people that have unique wants and preferences instead of a wider market. 

Since a niche is a subset of a specialized group of consumers, if your product is catered towards them, chances are that they already have some level of understanding of what you’re offering them.

For example, let’s say that you’re marketing towards avid Pinterest users looking to better rank their pins and profile on the Pinterest app.

Since this niche most likely consists of individuals who are already familiar with Pinterest’s algorithm and strategies for increasing visibility, highlighting these specific features can demonstrate your product’s value proposition effectively without the need for additional explanations. 

If You’re Selling Luxury Items

Branded-item enthusiasts typically tend to value more detailed and technical information when eyeing a product that they want.

Though you can mention the benefits, they may not be as important since luxury consumers are already familiar with the advantages associated with premium products. 

Price, brand reputation, and specific features outweigh the traditional benefits in this market segment.

Consider the example of purchasing an expensive gemstone. A jewelry expert would already understand the significance of specifications like Ideal Cut, S12 clarity, and the like, since these technical details speak to the gem’s quality and value. 

If this is your target audience, detailed specifications are more meaningful than general benefits, such as the gem’s brilliance or durability.

When Should I Market The Benefits?

A man in a leather jacket, holding up a piece of paper and drawing on it while pitching his idea to a (supposed) audience.

Compared to the former, marketing benefits are super common in the world of business. I mean just look around you! 

There’s a popular saying in marketing that goes something along the lines of, “features tell, benefits sell.

So here are some scenarios where a benefit-driven approach is the most suitable.

If Your Product Is Fresh

Okay, you’ve got this new and amazing product, but nobody’s ever heard of it before.

How do you explain what it does and why it’s as remarkable as you say it is? 

That’s where emphasizing the benefits comes into play. This time, it’s more than just listing off features, it’s about demonstrating how your product can genuinely enhance people’s lives. 

A clever marketer can take a brand-new product and make it seem like an essential need. They’re selling a full experience rather than just a product, making potential buyers feel as if they’re missing out if they don’t sign up. 

So, the next time you’re planning on introducing anything new, remember to highlight the value and worth of what you’re offering to make it more likely for your target audience to resonate with your product. 

If You’re Utilizing Emotions When Purchasing 

When it comes to making purchases, our emotions often play a big role in decision-making.

Whether it’s about wanting to feel better, solve a problem, fearing missing out, or simply satisfying curiosity, our reasons for buying something can be deeply rooted in our emotions. 

Each of these motivations taps into specific aspects of psychology in marketing that appeal to our instincts and desires.

When you’re promoting a product, it’s generally more effective to highlight the benefits rather than simply listing its features because they connect with customers more on an emotional level, making them easier to relate to and understand. 

For example, imagine promoting a smartphone by only listing its technical specifications. 

Customers may struggle to grasp the importance of these features unless they’re some sort of techie.

(Some people wouldn’t even understand a single bit) 

But if you emphasize benefits like its smooth performance for high-end games and applications, customers can immediately see how the product enhances their experience and ultimately pushes them to make a purchase.

If There’s Either A Little Or A Lot Of Competition

Yes. There is, in fact, a lot more wiggle room when you’re marketing a product’s benefits compared to its features.

If you’re operating in a market with little competition, highlighting the benefits of your product can give you a significant edge. 

With fewer competitors to go up against, emphasizing how your product solves problems or improves lives can help you stand out and capture the interest of potential customers. 

On the flip side, even in a crowded market with lots of competition, highlighting the unique perks of your product can still set you apart from the rest.

By demonstrating how your product provides distinct advantages or fulfills specific desires that competitors just can’t match, you can carve out a niche for yourself and attract customers who value what you have to offer. 

So whether you’re up against a few competitors or swimming in a sea of them, focusing on the benefits of your product is key. 

It’s all about speaking your customers’ language, showing them why they need what you’ve got, building rapport, and  ultimately driving sales.

Got a sales page but aren’t getting the Traffic you’re hoping for?

So, you’re ready to market your products and your business page is all ready good to go.

You did all the right things and followed all the steps to make your sales page as attractive as possible, but why isn’t anybody clicking on your link?

You might be feeling discouraged and left scratching your head, wondering how to make it better.

That’s where we come in!

By signing up to our online audit, we’ll go through the process step by step and help you achieve your business goals by offering suggestions and turning your great ideas into better ones!

(All for free, might I add)

Say goodbye to disappointment, and together, we’ll help you put your vision into action.

So, ready to give it a shot?

FAQs

How Are Features And Benefits Related To Each Other?

As mentioned previously, features are just a list of what your product or service is, whereas benefits are what it accomplishes for your consumer. In other words, features describe what your clients will receive, and benefits demonstrate how your product or service will enhance their lives.

What’s The Feature Advantage Benefit Method?

Every item or service that a customer or patient considers purchasing will have three components: a feature (the product, service, or process), a function (what the feature performs), and a benefit (what’s in it for them).

Is The FAB Method In Marketing Important?

It is. In fact, FAB is vital for determining and focusing on what customers desire in a product or service. Feature-benefit selling supports potential consumers in connecting the characteristics of a product to the advantages they can get and enjoy from it.

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