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Omnichannel fashion retailing: examining the customer decision-making journey

Samantha Lynch (Independent Researcher, Cirencester, UK)
Liz Barnes (Manchester Fashion Institute, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK)

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management

ISSN: 1361-2026

Article publication date: 24 April 2020

Issue publication date: 20 August 2020




The purpose of this paper is to examine the customer decision-making journey of high involvement female fashion consumers in the context of omnichannel fashion retailing.


The research is qualitative in nature, using a multi-method approach consisting of focus groups, semi-structured interviews, online diaries and follow-up interviews, with grounded theory applied to analyse the data.


The results of the study include a framework to outline the stages of the omnichannel customer decision-making journey for young high involvement female fashion consumers. The findings also reveal that an omnichannel decision-making journey is the one that predicated on risk and that consumers employ specific strategies to avoid such risks.

Research limitations/implications

Due to the nature of this research, the sample size is limited and may not be generalised. Data collection was confined to Manchester, UK.

Practical implications

Customer journey mapping enables practitioners to view the entire shopping experience through the eyes of the customer and enables retailers' fault-find issues within the customer and brand experience.


The paper advances knowledge about fashion and consumer behaviour. The customer decision journey framework maps the emotional experiences, devices and channels encountered by high-involvement fashion consumers across each stage of the omnichannel journey.



The authors would like to acknowledge the intellectual debate amongst fellow fashion marketing academics in the design and fashion business subject group at the University of Manchester with particular thanks to Dr Helen McCormick and Dr Delia Vazquez.


Lynch, S. and Barnes, L. (2020), "Omnichannel fashion retailing: examining the customer decision-making journey", Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, Vol. 24 No. 3, pp. 471-493.



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Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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