The omni-channel approach: A utopia for companies?

Monika Hajdas , Joanna Radomska , Susana Silva


There has been a shift towards providing a seamless consumer journey experience in the retail industry, resulting from a customer-centric approach. In the new paradigm, channels are becoming more intertwined and intricate, and ultimately more companies are embracing the omni-channel alternative. However, this alternative seems to be difficult for companies to operationalize. Such difficulty is due to several factors that need to be identified and disentangled. Therefore, in this study we consider the barriers faced by firms and categorize them to understand whether it is possible to successfully implement the omni-channel approach. We use four case studies to investigate the obstacles, looking for brands that operate in different industries, represent different levels of channel integration and have had different experiences in the retail industry. We identify two types of obstacles: internal, including operational and strategic barriers (employee-related, organizational and vision-related factors); and external, including product-related, customer-related, legal and competitive drivers. We propose a theoretical framework that shows the scope of industry drivers affecting the implementation of an omni-channel strategy, as well as a model showing how internal and external factors affect the evolution of channel integration. As a result, we claim that for some industries and products, even if internal obstacles are significantly reduced, because of industry drivers, successful implementation of the omni-channel approach may ultimately be a utopia.
Publication typeIn press
Author Monika Hajdas (BM / DMM)
Monika Hajdas,,
- Department of Marketing Management
, Joanna Radomska (BM / DSMa)
Joanna Radomska,,
- Department of Strategic Management
, Susana Silva (ES / DSMa) - [Catholic University of Portugal]
Susana Silva ,,
- Department of Strategic Management
- Universidade Catolica Portuguesa
Journal seriesJournal of Retailing and Consumer Services, ISSN 0969-6989, e-ISSN 1873-1384, (N/A 100 pkt)
Issue year2020
Publication size in sheets0.65
Article number102131
Keywords in EnglishChannel integration,Omni-channel strategy, Strategy implementation
ASJC Classification1406 Marketing
Referenced project[17] Program doskonałości naukowo - badawczej INTEREKON . . Project leader at WUEB: Ewa Stańczyk-Hugiet, , start date 01-01-2019, end date 31-12-2022, in run
Languageen angielski
Not used for evaluationyes
Score (nominal)0
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2018 = 1.559; WoS Impact Factor: 2017 = 2.919 (2)
Citation count*
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UwagaAuthors would like to acknowledge the financial support of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education in Poland under the programme “Regional Initiative of Excellence” 2019–2022 project number 015/RID/2018/19 total funding amount 10 721 040,00 PLN and CEGE – Research Centre in Management and Economics, funded by the Multiannual Funding Programme of R&D Centers of FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, Portugal, under the project UIDB/00731/2020.
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* presented citation count is obtained through Internet information analysis and it is close to the number calculated by the Publish or Perish system.