Pure Play vs. Bricks-and-Clicks: Who Reaps the Benefits of Virtual Retailing?

Pure Play vs. Bricks-and-Clicks: Who Reaps the Benefits of Virtual Retailing?

Youlong Zhuang (University of Missouri - Columbia, USA) and Albert L. Lederer (University of Kentucky, USA)
Copyright: © 2006 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/jebr.2006100101
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Abstract

Pure play and bricks-and-clicks represent today’s two major retailing models. The current study answers four questions comparing the two models in terms of the e-commerce benefits achieved and information systems management practices used to achieve them. It applies a Web-based survey to compare 69 pure plays to 348 bricks-and-clicks retailers in terms of the market expansion, customer service, back-end efficiency, inventory management, and cost reduction benefits reaped, as well as in terms of the benchmarking, process redesign, and planning practices used. It found market expansion as the top benefit for both types of retailers. Pure plays exceed bricks-and-clicks at achieving back-end efficiency, inventory management, and cost reduction benefits. Pure play retailers apply benchmarking to reap their benefits while bricks-and-clicks retailers use process redesign and planning to reap theirs. Pure play retailers are better able to utilize benchmarking to realize market expansion and customer service benefits. On the other hand, bricks-and-clicks retailers are better able to utilize process redesign to realize inventory management and cost reduction benefits. The findings suggest potential directions for future research as well as electronic retail practice.

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