Industrial engineering

What is product design?, 3 Factors affecting Product Design, Effect of product design on cost, product design process

To know “what is product design“, let’s have an idea about what is the product means?

The product can be defined as goods or services produced by a company, that made available for customers’ use. Companies are making products to satisfy the customer’s desire, need, and make a profit for themself at the same time.

Product designing is the first step towards making a new product or improve an existing product according to customers’ needs.

What is Product Design?

Before starting to manufacture a new product or improve a product, it is essential to design the product first. 
When a new idea has been conceived and developed to the point at which it shows itself to be both technically and commercially stable, it considers how the product should be made, Factors affecting product design, etc.
 New and improved product design idea comes from consumer’s feedback, Research and development, and other competitor’s products.
 Product design deals with both form and function. Form design takes care of the shape of the product and functional deals with it’s working.
A design department consists of designers, engineers, and draughtsmen. Making a new or modified product will require the service of the following department of the company.
  •       Marketing.
  •       Research and development.
  •       Design.
  •       Manufacture.
  •       Account and personnel. 
what is product design
Product Design

Product Design Pdf

Product Design Requirements:

The essential requirements of a good product design are it should earn profit with consideration of customer satisfaction. Let’s discuss product design requirements from both the customer and companies point of view.

In order to achieve customer satisfaction

  • The product should be function correctly and possess the desired degree of accuracy. 
  • The product should be easy to operate.
  • Product design should be such that it is easy to achieve accessibility for servicing.
  • The product should compact and obtain good space utilization.
  • The price of the product should be reasonable compare to other products in the market.

In order to make an adequate profit

  • The product should easy to manufacture within available resources.
  • A well-design product will consist of a minimum number of parts.
  • Good product design will call for a minimum number of operations and needed less raw material.
  • A well-designed product should be easy to peak and distribute.

Effect of product design on cost

  1. Product cost depends on product design, complicated design makes the cost higher and vice versa.
  2. Production cost is made up of direct labour cost, direct material cost, direct expense, and indirect expense cost.
  3. The product should be designed with a material that is cheaper, machinable, and long-lasting at the same time. The product should be made from minimum material to reduce machining and material cost.
  4. Alternative cheap material can be used. For example, Aluminium can be used for making casting instate of magnesium alloy or non-metals can be used depending upon the requirement.
  5. Product cost can be reduced if there is a better mutual understanding between the design and manufacturing division. It may be possible to reduce the cost of products in order to compete in the market.  
  6. Product cost may be reduced by applying value analysis.
  7. A product should be designed with fewer parts. The lesser the number of components lesser the product cost.
  8. Some component of the product which cannot be economically and easily produced, it should purchase from outside suppliers.
  9. Productivity should be higher so that products can sell at a lower cost.

Factors affecting Product Design:

Product design depends upon the following factors:

  1. Technical factors.
  2. Industrial design factors.
  3. Designing for a production-economic factor.

1. Technical factors

  • Kind of workers will be working (skilled or unskilled) and condition of noise, vibrations, heat, etc.
  • Accuracy, speed, feed, types of materials used, etc should be considered in the time of product design.
  • product design determines how often maintenance and repair will be required.

2. Industrial Design factors:

  • The product should be function at minimum cost and the product should have a pleasing appearance.
  • Ensure that the product is suitable for human use and it should not cause excessive fatigue to the workers.

3. Design for Production-economic factors:

  • The material should be the cheapest and the minimum amount of material being used in making each component part.
  • Waste during production should be minimized.
  • Product design should be such as it makes the best use of factory layout and the project needs to complete with the available labour.
  • Does the product design allow maximum possible tolerance?
  • The design needs to be simple, keep the type, and varieties of parts to a minimum.
  • Right finish being use consistent with cost, endurance, and appearance requirements.

Types of product design

There are 3 main types of product design, 

  • System Design
  • Process Design
  • Interface Design

product design process

1. Research stage

Design and Research is the first stage of the product design,  in this stage design engineer has to find out what will satisfy the customer? what they are going to make? what are the resources they have, to make that? The research stage Mainly focuses on targeted people, environmental conditions at which it will operate, machines, etc.

Targeted people mean potential customers age, gender, educational background, income level, social status, condition, etc. The environmental condition refers to where the design object will be located. Machines and electronics device will be such as product should be user friendly, and safe.

2. Analysis stage

 The analysis of design is based on design and research. This stage is more focused on the visual of the product, design customization in a targeted manner by analyzing the targeted users, Analyse the market so that it can meet the current trend, and needs of most users. Find out the market challenge and alternative ways to solve that.

3. Conceptual design stage

The conceptual design includes some organized targets based on previous market demand and customers’ needs. The conceptual design stage develops the design in the direction of the future product. So that we can save our resources Input, increase the profit, and estimate and guide the late recycling issues.

4. Detailed design stage

The analysis of design is based on design and research. This stage is more focused on the visual of the product, design customization in a targeted manner by analyzing the targeted users, Analyse the market so that it can meet the current trend, and needs of most users. Find out the market challenge and alternative ways to solve that.

5. Design output stage

The design output stage is referred to as an expression of the final design, which is selected for manufacturing. In this stage, detailed dimensions, various parts, structures, etc are checked for the final time. These outputs provide the basis for production and construction after the design phase.

Types of Tools or software Product Designers Use

Product design covers a broad range of disciplines, the role requires several different types of tools. Some of the important tool or software are:

  • Wireframing apps (Sketch, Adobe XD, Figma, etc),
  • Graphic design apps (Adobe Photoshop CC, Affinity Designer, CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2019, etc),
  • Prototyping tools (InVision,  Adobe Experience Design, Origami Studio, etc),
  • Research and data analytics tools (e.g., spreadsheets, sophisticated A/B testing apps)
  • CAD (computer-aided design) software,
  • Project management apps (e.g., Trello, Basecamp, Casual, etc),
  • Product roadmap apps (e.g., ProductPlan).

Product design examples

Most popular product designs are,

Coca Cola Bottle design – Now it is one of the most popular and well-known shapes in the world, Coca-Cola’s curvy glass bottle was fabricated in 1915. In an attempt to design a “bottle so distinct that you would recognize it by feel in the dark or lying broken on the ground.”

Oreo Cookie – The Oreo cookie has been the number 1 best selling cookie in the America since 1912. It is an innovation, by simply sandwiching creme filling between two chocolate cookies. The design has been duplicated often in the past 100 years, but the Oreo is a classic.

 iPhone – Since 2007, we have kept iPhones in our pockets and the design has grown and evolved every year. But the iphone, has kept the signature clean, minimal, and glossy feel that Apple perforate into all its’ products.

Automatic Transmission – One of the most essential, yet most appreciated engineering designs. The design of the automatic transmission revolutionized fuel economy and implanted the foundation from which future automatic transmissions vehicle would be designed and built.

Related Terms


A product is an item offered for sale. A product can be a service or goods. It can be physical or in virtual or cyber form. Every product is made at a cost and each of them is sold at a price. The price that can be charged depends on the market, the quality, the marketing and the segment that is targeted. Each product has a useful life after which it needs replacement and a life cycle after which it has to be re-invented.

Product Planning

Product planning is the evaluation of the range, specification, and pricing of new and existing products according to the present and future market requirements and competition.
Planning of product is to satisfy the company objectives and to specify the required research, design, and development support. Read more>>

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