Crafting an Omnichannel Strategy: Identifying Sources of Competitive Advantage and Implementation Barriers

  • Olli RusanenEmail author


Omnichannel retailing (OCR) is an emerging concept with an emphasis on channel integration for providing seamless customer experiences across various channels. Scholars have studied omnichannel consumption extensively, but there is a need for research on the sources of competitiveness and the potential implementation barriers associated with omnichannel strategies. The purpose of this chapter is to broaden the applicability of omnichannel retailing from a narrow marketing base to take into account societal context (public policy), competitive factors (strategy), and intra-organizational structure (management). I will identify new research areas for academics and issues relating to the strategic management of omnichannel retailing for practitioners.

Two workshops were organized for a mixture of academics, retail managers, and consultants. Five OCR-related topic areas emerged from these workshops: (1) societal context, (2) established research regarding omnichannel consumption, (3) internal omnichannel resources as a driver of sustainable competitive advantage, (4) unique features of an omnichannel strategy as a driver of a differentiated market position, and (5) structural implementation barriers of an omnichannel strategy. These areas were further specified through a problematization-based literature review. The results are summarized in a model: the omnichannel strategy triangle.


Omnichannel retailing Channel integration Data analytics Resource-based view Industrial organization Implementation barriers 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Marketing, School of BusinessAalto UniversityHelsinkiFinland

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