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  • 1.
    Lindholm, Sofie
    et al.
    Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Marketing and Logistics. Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Business Administration.
    Balland, Julien
    Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Marketing and Logistics. Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Business Administration.
    Choosing The Right Postponement Strategy: A Focus On E-commerce and Postponement2012Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Background: the concept of postponement primarily aims at reducing uncertainty, not to say eliminate it. It is achieved by postponing processes until the required information be- comes available. Although the concept of postponement is not new, its application and connection with e-commerce companies operating on the B2C sector has gained little at- tention. Postponement is presented as having four forms: the full postponement strategy, the logistics postponement strategy, the manufacturing postponement strategy and the full speculation strategy. Although every strategy presents pros and cons, some are more ade- quate given different circumstances.

    Purpose: the purpose of this study is to explore (1) which factors determine whether e- commerce companies use postponement, and (2) which determinants are responsible for their strategy selection.

    Method: a qualitative research approach was used, with a multiple-case study as the re- search design. The empirical data was collected through in-depth semi-structured inter- views with four respondents, from four different companies.

    Conclusion: the authors presented a revised version of the framework they used to con- duct this research. Some determinants, present in the original framework, were removed given the authors’ findings. However, eight of the remaining determinants were kept in the revised version of the framework. The ones concerned were: the volume, the product type, the product range, the value profile, the relative delivery time, the delivery frequency, the uncertainty of demand and the economies of scale. Furthermore, the authors’ findings sug- gested a new determinant should be added to the framework, namely the number of key suppliers. With the help of the framework e-commerce companies can now evaluate their products according to the framework and decide accordingly whether they should apply postponement, and if so, which strategy suits them the best.

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