Why Great New Products Fail

Many innovative new products don’t succeed in the marketplace. One common reason: Companies don’t focus enough on understanding how customers evaluate products and make purchase decisions.

By Duncan Simester

Spring 2016

A lot of great new products fail — and companies often wonder why. Although the companies were careful to listen to their customers, the products still failed. This is not a rare occurrence. A recent study of almost 9,000 new products that achieved broad distribution at a national retailer revealed that just 40% of them were still sold three years later.1 (See “About the Research.”) Some of these products did not create value for customers and deserved to fail. However, many would have created value ...

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