Germans prefer products which will last a long time. And for which they will pay a higher price. A durable product reduces replacement cost. It is also an indication of solid craftsmanship and the correct use of material. Durability is a sign of consistency, quality, of tradition and continuity. Durable products stand the test of time.
For Americans durability is relative. Products don‘t last forever. Change is, however, a constant. Products must adapt to the changing needs of customers. Americans value durability, but within a more narrow scope.
In many ways Germans see in America a throw-away society, with little sense of quality, a people who overvalue all that is so-called new and improved. American products are simply not durable enough.
“Who wants to own a product forever?” Americans like change, variety, alternatives. From their perspective Germans pay far too much for a level of durability neither necessary nor requested.
Advice to Germans and Germans
As always, remain in dialogue, in synch with each other as colleagues. Define together just how durable a product should be, keeping in your field of vision both the customers as well as the competition.