Marketing functions include a series of specialised activities performed for the marketing of goods and services.
(i) Marketing research/Gathering and analysing market information: Marketing research is the systematic investigation of the facts relevant to the various aspects in marketing. Marketing research helps managers to arrive at an appropriate decision. Market information should be gathered and analysed appropriately.
(ii) Market Planning: This is concerned with the development of appropriate marketing plans to achieve the marketing objectives of an organisation. This includes making a comprehensive action programme covering all the important aspects of the plan.
(iii) Product Designing and Development: Another important marketing activity is related to the product designing and development in such a way so as to attract the targeted customers. The product design should be such, which improves the performance of a product or gives it a competitive edge over its competitors.
(iv) Standardisation and Grading: Standardisation refers to determining the basic measure/standard of the product with regard to shape, size, colour quality, quantity, etc. Grading is the process of classification of the product into different groups, on the basis of some parameters like quality, quantity, size, etc.
(v) Packaging and Labelling: Packaging is the act of designing and packing the product for customers. A package is a wrapper or a container in which a product is enclosed. Packaging reduces the risk of spoilage, breakage, etc. in the process of storage and transportation of goods. Labelling means designing and developing a label to be put on the package.
(vi) Branding: It is the process of stamping a product with some identifying name or mark or a combination of both.
(vii) Customer support services: Services such as after sales services, maintenance services, technical services, handling customer complaints are included in this function.
(viii) Storage and Warehousing: Storage is the process of holding and preserving goods between the time of their purchase/production and the time of their sale. The storage function is facilitated by warehouses.
(ix) Transportation: Transportation refers to the physical movement of goods from the place of production to the place of consumption. By carrying the goods to such places where they are needed, creates place utility.
(x) Promotion: Promotion refers to all such activities of the manufacturer, like advertising, personal selling, sales promotion and publicity, which are intended to influence buyer’s behaviour. (xi) Pricing: Pricing is the process of fixing the price of a product or service. Prices are generally fixed by manufacturers carefully after looking into three factors, i.e., the cost of production, the demand for the product and the nature of competition.