What is the primary activities of business?

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Iris Phillips answered
In the sense of a particular business, the main or primary business activities are the manufacture of the product or provision of the service that will earn the majority of the business income, maintaining good customer relationships, as well as generating new outlets for the product or service. In other words, new customers need to be attracted for the business.

  • Business in general
In the broader sense of business as a whole, activities are divided into three sections, or categories. These are the primary, or extractive activities, the secondary, or manufacturing activities, and tertiary, or service activities.

  • Primary activities
Primary, otherwise referred to as extractive activities or industries are, for example, farming, fishing or mining. They involve the extraction of natural materials, such as a farmer growing various crops, a miner extracting minerals and ores, fuels such as oil or coal or a fisherman catching fish. Primary activities may produce raw materials, such as iron ore for the production of steel, or oil to be processed into petrol or plastics. They may also produce final products, such as fruit, vegetables or fish.

  • Secondary activities
Secondary, or manufacturing, activities involve the manufacture or construction of products out of raw materials or parts supplied by other industries. Examples of secondary activities are the construction or manufacture of steel and cars, oil rigs and refineries, books, chocolate, fish-pie, or bread.

  • Service activities
Tertiary, or service, activities are the provision of services, as opposed to the supply of goods. Direct services to individuals may include hairdressing, health care, insurance and postal services, banking or education. Commercial services may include business insurances, business banking or haulage services. Many commercial services are, however, just as applicable to individuals as they are to businesses, so the line here is very blurred.

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