The core benefits are offered through the components that make up the actual product the customer purchases. For instance, when a consumer returns home from shopping at the grocery store and takes a purchased item out of her shopping bag, the actual product is the item she holds in her hand.
Within the actual product is the consumable product, which can be viewed as the main good, service, or idea the customer is buying. For example, while toothpaste comes in a package that makes dispensing it easy, the consumable product is the paste that is placed on a toothbrush. But marketers must understand that while the consumable product is, in most cases, the most critical of all product decisions, the actual product includes many separate product decisions including product features, branding, packaging, labeling, and more. Full coverage of several of these important areas is provided later in this tutorial.