Definition: Customer Needs

What is customer needs?

Customer needs are the desires, expectations, and requirements of customers in relation to a particular product, service, or brand. They are the basic requirements that a customer seeks from a product or service to fulfill their particular needs, preferences, and expectations.

3 types of customer needs

Customer needs can be categorized into 3 types: functional needs, emotional needs, and social needs.

  • Functional needs are related to the performance, features, and benefits of a product or service. For example, a customer may need a car with good fuel efficiency, ample storage space, and advanced safety features to fulfill their transportation needs.
  • Emotional needs are related to the feelings, experiences, and perceptions that a customer has towards a product or service. For example, a customer may want to buy a luxury watch not just because it tells time but because it makes them feel prestigious and successful.
  • Social needs are related to the influence of others in the customer's decision-making process, such as family, friends, or peers. For example, a customer may choose to dine at a particular restaurant because it is a popular spot among their group of friends or because it has a positive reputation in the local community.

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