基于复合型电商平台的制造商销售模式选择及竞争策略

Translated title of the contribution: Manufacturer’s Sales Mode Choices and Competitive Strategies Based on the Composite E-commerce Platform

周驰, 王艺馨, 于静*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

Abstract

考虑两个生产替代性商品的制造商及复合型电商平台 (简称复合平台) 组成的平台供应链,其中一个制造商以批发销售模式与平台合作,而另一制造商可以选择批发、代理和混合三种销售模式来获得竞争优势。通过构建不同渠道Stackelberg博弈模型,分析制造商的最优销售模式选择策略。研究表明:当渠道弹性较低时,若复合平台单位佣金较低,代理销售模式是最优选择;而随着单位佣金的增加,制造商应当转而选择批发销售模式;当渠道弹性较高时,只要单位佣金并非很低时,制造商应当选择混合销售模式。同时,在不同条件下制造商能够与复合平台达成三种不同模式的合作,从而实现双赢。

The accelerated rise of the platform economy has led to the gradual development of e-commerce platform into a composite e-commerce platform (referred to as platform), providing manufacturers with more options for collaborative sales models with platform. Manufacturers can choose the wholesale sales model, which involves wholesaling products to platform and reselling them to consumers. Manufacturers can choose the agency sales model, where they open stores on the platform but need to pay a certain commission to the platform. In addition, manufacturers can also choosethe hybrid sales model, which means they can sell their products in both ways. At present, it has become a norm for manufacturers to compete for consumers on the platform. Manufacturers often choose the wholesale sales model, which can not only deliver the ownership of products to the platform, but also reduce their operating costs on the platform. Consumers’ preference for the wholesale sales model can also increase the potential demand of manufacturers. However, in the face of manufacturers adopting the wholesale sales model, if competing manufacturers also choose the wholesale sales model, the market size of their competitors and the degree of product competition may strongly affect their profits. If themanufacturers choose agency sales model, they need to pay a commission to the platform. If they choose hybrid sales model, they also create unfavorable factors for both models. Therefore, based on composite e-commerce platforms and the competitive environment of manufacturers, how can manufacturers choose the optimal sales model? Could they achieve a win-win cooperation with the platform? How do different market factors affect the optimal profits of manufacturers and supply chain members?

This paper considers two manufacturers A and B that produce alternative products, both of which sell products through platforms. Manufacturer B and the platform adopt wholesale sales model, we study the sales model selection strategy of manufacturer A. Then, we construct Stackelberg game models with manufacturers A and B and the platform under different channels. The platform first determines the unit commission, manufacturer B decides the wholesale price, then the platform decides the retail price of the wholesale sales channel, and finally manufacturer A decides the retail price of the agency sales channel. Assuming that the information is symmetric, all parties in the supply chain are rational.

The research results indicate that under the wholesale sales model, the wholesale price of manufacturer A increases with the potential market size of the product, while the platform increases the retail price due to the higher wholesale price. Correspondingly, manufacturer Blowers wholesale price and cooperates with the platform, while price reduction of platform still cannot increase manufacturer B’s product demand. When the potential market size of manufacturer A is large, the platform can also benefit. At this point, Manufacturer A and the platform can achieve cooperation. When competition among manufacturers increases, an increase in wholesale price for the manufacturer leads to an increase in wholesale price for another manufacturer. Intuitively, when the potential market size of manufacturer A is high, the platform lowers the retail price of product A, thereby increasing consumers’ motivation to purchase product A. Competition from manufacturers can increase the profits of supply chain members.

In the agency sales model, the potential market size of manufacturer A increases consumer demand for product A. Manufacturer B will respond to market competition by reducing the wholesale price, but it still cannot increase profits by adopting a “small profit but quick sales” strategy. When the unit commission is small, the profit of manufacturer A increases with the potential market size. Moreover, the platform decreases with the potential market size. When competition among manufacturers intensifies, both retail and wholesale prices of products increase. At this time, the profits of Manufacturer B and the platform will also increase with product competition, while Manufacturer A’s profits will be affected by unit commissions. Only when the unit commission is low, the profit of manufacturer A increases with platform competition. As the unit commission increases, the product prices of manufacturers A and B both increase. Contrarily, the profit of manufacturer A does not always decrease, and the profit of the platform does not always increase.

In the hybrid sales model, when the potential market size of manufacturer A is small and the unit commission of the platform increases, the cost of agent selling products on the platform increases. In order to increase profits, manufacturer A will increase the retail price of products in the agent channel, causing consumers to turn to wholesale sales channels to purchase product A.On one hand, manufacturer A can benefit from agency channels through higher unit profits, and on the other hand, it can also benefit from wholesale channels through higher demand. But in this model, in order to compete with manufacturer A, the wholesale price of manufacturer B decreases accordingly. At this point, the platform can not only simultaneously increase product prices and obtain higher profits, but also enhance competition between products.

Therefore, when the channel elasticity is low, if the platform unit commission is low, the agent sales model is the optimal choice. As unit commissions increase, manufacturers should switch to wholesale sales models. When the channel elasticity is high, as long as the unit commission is not too low, manufacturers should choose a mixed sales model. Furthermore, manufacturers achieve three different modes of cooperation with the platform under different conditions, thereby achieving a win-win situation. This paper only considers the situation with one platform, and the model selection problem of manufacturers with multiple platforms competing is the future research direction.
Translated title of the contributionManufacturer’s Sales Mode Choices and Competitive Strategies Based on the Composite E-commerce Platform
Original languageChinese (Simplified)
Pages (from-to)6-23
Number of pages8
Journal运筹与管理 = Operations Research and Management Science
Volume32
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Aug 2023
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • platform supply chain
  • hybrid platform
  • manufacturer competition
  • sales mode choice
  • Stackelberg game
  • 平台供应链
  • 复合平台
  • 制造商竞争
  • 销售模式选择
  • Stackelberg博弈

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