A "meta-analysis" of multibrand, multioutlet channel systems

Eunkyu Lee, Richard Staelin, Weon Sang Yoo, Rex C.T. Du

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


In today's multibrand, multichannel marketplace, optimal channel design involves issues such as distribution intensity, channel exclusivity, vertical and horizontal coordination, and online-offline mixed structures. We investigate how a firm's choice in these design issues affects its profitability under varying levels of brand and outlet differentiation. Our spatial model explicitly captures heterogeneous consumer preference for brand position, store location, and outlet type, under various consumer behavior assumptions. We apply this same underlying model to 10 different channel structures, deriving associated demand functions and equilibrium solutions. We perform a meta-analysis over the entire set of results to estimate a general model that summarizes the linkages among the factors shaping optimal channel structure decisions in a multibrand, multioutlet market. This general model efficiently describes the complex interactions of channel characteristics with industry structure and consumer characteristics, providing new findings as well as greater clarity to some results in the literature. A predictive analysis applied to additional channel structures exhibits strong generalizability in qualitative findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1950-1969
Number of pages20
JournalManagement Science
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Channel coordination
  • Channel structure
  • Demand formulation
  • Multichannel pricing
  • Product line pricing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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