The Pros and Cons of Productizing Your Service

Robin Vander Heyden
Last Updated:
July 17, 2020

Here at ManyRequests, we’ve never made a secret of the fact that we think many freelancers and agencies could benefit from productizing their services. However, we also know that it isn’t the right choice for everyone.

That’s why in this article, we thought we’d share some of the main pros and cons of productizing a service to help you determine whether it’s the right choice for you.  

Benefits of productizing a service

I’m a glass-half-full kind of guy, so let’s start with the pros. Here are some of the main benefits that you should know about.

More sales

Productizing your professional services can help you to land more sales by simplifying the customer journey. Rather than having to commit to a lengthy inquiry process, your customers can look at your services page and immediately know exactly what they can get and at what price.

To illustrate why this helps you land more sales, let’s put ourselves in the shoes of an imaginary customer.

Imagine you’re looking to hire a content writing agency to produce a few posts for your company blog. You’re a busy man so ideally, you want this to be as hands-off for you as possible.

You visit two content agency websites to compare their services. Here’s what it says on each of their pricing pages.

Agency A:

  • Response blog posts (1,000 words) - $200
  • Staple blog posts (2,000 words) - $390
  • Pillar blog posts (3,500 words) - $600
  • All posts are optimized around your target keyword and delivered within 1 week.

Agency B:

  • Content writing services are priced on a case-by-case basis. Fill out the contact form below to inquire.

Which agency are you most likely to follow up with? The one that’s asking you to fill out a form and wait for who-knows-how-long just to get an idea of pricing? Or the agency that’s given you all that information upfront so you can just drop the money and get back to work?

I know which one I’d choose.

Faster payments

Productizing a service simplifies the payment process. You don’t have to worry about tracking hours and invoicing as you’ve already clearly defined the price and scope of the project upfront.

You can use tools like ManyRequests to set up one-click payments on your website so your customers hit the buy button before you begin working.

Streamlined processes

Productization can also streamline your operations. You can implement standardized operating processes and systematize your services using tools like ManyRequests, which reduces your workload.

There are no more time-consuming proposals and much less client communication. Plus, your services will be easier to automate, outsource, and manage.

Defined scope

Ever felt like every project you take on ends up evolving into something much more complex with every client request? Productizing your services eliminates that problem.

You’re packaging your service and selling it with a defined scope. No more endless customizations and no more scope creep.

An edge from specialization

Productization involves ‘niching down’, so to speak. You’re providing a specific solution for a specific problem and selling an end result that tightly matches up with your client’s needs. This kind of specialization can give you an edge over your competitors.

Scalable business model

When you productize your services, you create something scalable. Service-based business models offer little room for growth as your sales are limited to the amount of work you can do. Products, on the other hand, are tangible units that are separate from you. You can sell as many units as you need and scale up your team alongside your sales or outsource surplus orders.    

Drawbacks of productizing a service

Alright, now let’s look at the drawbacks.

Narrower target market

When you narrow your services down to something that can be neatly packaged and sold like a product, your pool of potential customers can become narrower too. There will always be some customers that want the flexibility and customization that comes with a service-based model, and these customers will have to look elsewhere.

Less personalized service

Productized services are less personalized than traditional service-based models, which can lead to less satisfied clients. Some clients will prefer to speak to service providers personally before making a purchase.

Existing clients might not be happy

If you have an existing client base that is used to everything being tailored and customized to their exact needs, they might not like the idea of productization. You’ll have to convince them of the benefits or be prepared to lose clients.

High initial time investment

Working out how to package your services isn’t an easy decision to make. You’ll have to put a lot of thought into figuring out how to put together your product packages in a way that represents great value for your clients. You’ll also need to put into place internal systems and learn to automate the process as much as possible.

This isn’t something you can do overnight. It takes time, research, and often many revisions until you get it right.

The pros and cons at a glance

Before we wrap up, here’s a quick chart that summarizes all the pros and cons we’ve covered.

The Pros & Cons of Productizing Your ServiceProsConsMore salesNarrower target marketFaster paymentsLess personalizedStreamlined processesPotentially lose existing clientsClearly-defined scopeLarge initial time investmentSpecialization  Scalable business model

Ready to get started?

If you still think productizing is the right choice for your business, why not sign up for a free trial of ManyRequests? Our all-in-one platform gives you access to all the tools you need to set up and manage your productized service business.