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Contextual adaptation of omni-channel grocery retailers’ online fulfilment centres

Eriksson, Ebba LU ; Norrman, Andreas LU and Kembro, Joakim LU (2019) In International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management 47(12). p.1232-1250
Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate how grocery retailers configure their online fulfilment centres (OFC) as they move towards an omni-channel structure and what contextual factors influence their decisions. Design/methodology/approach: An exploratory case study with three grocery retailers in the Nordic countries was conducted. The study investigates the current OFC configurations and identifies nine important contextual factors. Findings: This study shows the importance of understanding the changes that omni-channel retailing entails for an OFC configuration. Nine contextual factors were identified. Several of the factors are found in previous theory, but this paper extends the knowledge of how they affect the... (More)

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate how grocery retailers configure their online fulfilment centres (OFC) as they move towards an omni-channel structure and what contextual factors influence their decisions. Design/methodology/approach: An exploratory case study with three grocery retailers in the Nordic countries was conducted. The study investigates the current OFC configurations and identifies nine important contextual factors. Findings: This study shows the importance of understanding the changes that omni-channel retailing entails for an OFC configuration. Nine contextual factors were identified. Several of the factors are found in previous theory, but this paper extends the knowledge of how they affect the configuration of an OFC in grocery retail. The changes in, for example, order characteristics create different requirements for picking, packing, sorting and shipping when compared with traditional distribution centres (DC). Although representing a separate flow for online fulfilment, OFC configuration depends on how the other logistics flows from the DC to stores are designed. Research limitations/implications: To support further theory development, nine contextual factors and their relationship to OFC configurations are proposed. Practical implications: This study provides managerial value in two ways. First, grocery retailers with one or more OFCs can benchmark existing solutions using the empirical case descriptions. Second, the findings provide grocery retailers with knowledge of how to configure an OFC. Originality/value: The literature lacks a holistic approach towards how grocery retailers configure their OFCs and what factors affect these decisions. This study provides the first in-depth analysis of how the omni-channel context affects the configuration of all the aspects of an OFC.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Case study, Contextual factors, Dark store, Distribution centre, E-fulfilment centre, Grocery retail, Omni-channel, Online fulfilment centre, Sorting, Warehousing
in
International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management
volume
47
issue
12
article number
Vol. 47, No. 12
pages
19 pages
publisher
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
external identifiers
  • scopus:85067051124
ISSN
0959-0552
DOI
10.1108/IJRDM-08-2018-0182
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
10d23af9-d665-4de9-98a5-4ef10656f923
date added to LUP
2019-06-27 08:58:57
date last changed
2019-12-10 08:10:24
@article{10d23af9-d665-4de9-98a5-4ef10656f923,
  abstract     = {<p>Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate how grocery retailers configure their online fulfilment centres (OFC) as they move towards an omni-channel structure and what contextual factors influence their decisions. Design/methodology/approach: An exploratory case study with three grocery retailers in the Nordic countries was conducted. The study investigates the current OFC configurations and identifies nine important contextual factors. Findings: This study shows the importance of understanding the changes that omni-channel retailing entails for an OFC configuration. Nine contextual factors were identified. Several of the factors are found in previous theory, but this paper extends the knowledge of how they affect the configuration of an OFC in grocery retail. The changes in, for example, order characteristics create different requirements for picking, packing, sorting and shipping when compared with traditional distribution centres (DC). Although representing a separate flow for online fulfilment, OFC configuration depends on how the other logistics flows from the DC to stores are designed. Research limitations/implications: To support further theory development, nine contextual factors and their relationship to OFC configurations are proposed. Practical implications: This study provides managerial value in two ways. First, grocery retailers with one or more OFCs can benchmark existing solutions using the empirical case descriptions. Second, the findings provide grocery retailers with knowledge of how to configure an OFC. Originality/value: The literature lacks a holistic approach towards how grocery retailers configure their OFCs and what factors affect these decisions. This study provides the first in-depth analysis of how the omni-channel context affects the configuration of all the aspects of an OFC.</p>},
  author       = {Eriksson, Ebba and Norrman, Andreas and Kembro, Joakim},
  issn         = {0959-0552},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {11},
  number       = {12},
  pages        = {1232--1250},
  publisher    = {Emerald Group Publishing Limited},
  series       = {International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management},
  title        = {Contextual adaptation of omni-channel grocery retailers’ online fulfilment centres},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJRDM-08-2018-0182},
  doi          = {10.1108/IJRDM-08-2018-0182},
  volume       = {47},
  year         = {2019},
}