Harness, David R., Marr, Norman E. and Goy, Tina (1998) The identification of weak products revisited. Journal of product and brand management, 7 (4). pp. 319-335. ISSN 1061-0421

This paper revisits the causes of product deletion, an important if somewhat neglected part of product management theory. The causes of product deletion are important in the way they compromise a product manager’s ability to pursue the organisation’s product objectives. Without a knowledge of when or why a product may become sick, it is doubtful that proactive product management can be successfully accomplished. The documented causes of why products become terminally ill are explored to provide a conceptual background for the reported study. The findings of a qualitative study into the factors that cause product deletion in the financial services sector are presented. The key issues relating to both the financial services and the physical goods sector are analysed and discussed. The outcome of this is a realisation that the development of a universal model for the identification of why products become weak is unsafe. The results of this study suggest that there is a clear need for research that explores the relationship between the causes of product decline and the formulation of triggers of deletion.

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