In face of mounting challenges from delocalized production, commoditized products, and escalated demand from professional buyers, providing solutions rather than selling products has been put forward in the normative literature as a promising business model for creating high-value differentiated offerings. Nonetheless, empirical survey research into the processes whereby traditional suppliers of “basic products, spare parts and services” migrate towards marketing of “integrated solutions” is still sparse. Grounded in a competence-based marketing view, the current research addressed the research problem of how OEM suppliers upgrade their value offerings via competence-based solutions. The research model was tested by a sample of 403 contract/OEM manufacturers located in China. This resultant findings revealed the processes undertaken by OEM suppliers during the development of competence-based solutions, found out the internal coordination and innovation capabilities required to support competence-based solutions, and uncovered the external communication/disclosure of competence needed to strengthen the link between competence-based solutions and upgraded relationship value.
- Competence-based view of marketing
- integrated solutions
- supplier–buyer relationship value