Today’s dynamic markets are forcing firms to design increasingly complex channel strategies involving multiple channels of distribution

Today’s dynamic markets are forcing firms to design increasingly complex channel strategies involving multiple channels of distribution. As the complexity of these systems increases, so too does the opportunity for conflict between individual channel coalitions within the firm. Whereas this hybrid channel conflict can reduce channel performance, it can also serve as a mechanism forcing internal channel coalitions to work harder and smarter to serve their markets. In this paper, we develop and test six hypotheses related to hybrid channel conflict. The findings indicate that hybrid channel conflict is an important determinant of both channel performance and satisfaction. The results suggest further that the relationship between hybrid channel conflict and channel performance is moderated by the lifecycle stage. Moreover, our data support the view that the frequency of conflict, but not its intensity, has a negative effect on channel system performance. We conclude with a discussion of the theoretical and managerial implications of this study.