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What is service?

Service means any deeds, efforts, or performance. In other words, service is any action,
activities or its synonyms like tasks, work, job, functions, duties & responsibilities and so on.
According to Philip Kotler, A service is any act or performance that one party can offer to
another that is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything. Its
production may or may not be tied to a physical product.
The distinguish between good and service is not always perfectly clear. A pure good would
imply that the benefits received by the consumer contained no elements supplied by service.
Similarly, a pure service would contain no elements of goods.
In the United States, service jobs now account for 79 percent of all jobs and 74 percent of
gross domestic product (GDP). The service industries are generally two types, such as- The
government sector, and the private non-profit sector.

 Characteristics of service
Services have four (4) major characteristics that greatly affect the design of marketing
programs: intangibility, inseparability, heterogeneity or variability, and perishability. These
features are shortly discussed below-
Intangibility: A distinguishing characteristics of services that make them unable to touched
or sensed in the same manner as physical goods. To reduce uncertainty buyers will look for
evidence of the service quality.
Inseparability: A distinguishing characteristics of services that reflects the interconnection
among the service provider, the customer involved in receiving the service, and other
customers sharing the service experience. Service are typically produced and consumed
simultaneously.
Heterogeneity or variability: A distinguishing characteristics of services that reflects the
variation in consistency from one service transaction to the next. Because service depend on
who provides it and when & where services are provided. For example, some doctors have
excellent beside manner; others are less patient with their patients. Service buyers are aware
of this variability and often talk to others before selecting a service provider.
Perishability: A distinguishing characteristics of services in that they cannot be saved, their
unused capacity cannot be reserved, and they cannot be inventoried. The perishability of
service is not a problem when demand is steady, but it creates problem, when demand
fluctuates.
Lack of ownership: We got this characteristic of service from the definition of service
provided by P. Kotler. The service buyers are benefited by buying the service, but from
buying the service the buyer does not possess the ownership of that service.