What are Goods and Services?

Goods and Services

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Goods and Services

In economics, the terms “goods” and “services” refer to the two primary types of products that make up the economy.

  • Goods: These are tangible items that satisfy human wants or needs. They are physical commodities or products that you can see, touch, and use. Goods can further be classified into durable goods (such as cars, furniture, appliances, which can be used for a long period of time) and non-durable goods (such as food, drinks, and other consumables, which are used up or wear out quickly).
  • Services: These are intangible products that satisfy human wants or needs. Services are activities performed by individuals or companies for the benefit of others. They cannot be seen or touched but are experienced or consumed. Examples include education, healthcare, transportation, consulting, and financial services.

Goods and services are the output of a country’s economy and together form the basis of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP). They are produced by different sectors of the economy, such as agriculture, manufacturing, and services sector. Consumers, businesses, and governments all participate in the consumption of goods and services, and their production and consumption drive economic activity.

Example of Goods and Services


  • Durable Goods: A new laptop you purchase from a technology store is a good example of a durable good. This laptop has physical form, and you can use it over a longer period of time.
  • Non-Durable Goods: A sandwich you buy from a deli is a non-durable good. It’s a physical item, but its lifespan is short because you consume it soon after purchase.


  • Education Services: When you enroll in a university course, you are buying a service. The professors provide the service of education by teaching, grading assignments, and offering guidance.
  • Healthcare Services: When you go to a hospital for a check-up or treatment, you’re utilizing healthcare services. The doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers provide these services by diagnosing and treating patients.
  • Transportation Services: When you ride a city bus, take a taxi, or use a ride-hailing service like Uber or Lyft, you’re using transportation services. The drivers and companies provide the service of taking you from one place to another.

In all these examples, you can see how goods have a physical presence that you can touch and use, while services are intangible activities that you experience.

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