Channel Length

Posted in Marketing and Strategy Terms, Total Reads: 10661

Definition: Channel Length

Channel length refers to the number of intermediaries in a particular distribution channel between the producer & consumer.

A distribution channel can be long or short.

Long channel- Involves many intermediaries

Short Channel- Involves few intermediaries working in succession to provide the consumer with goods.

Factors influencing marketing channel strategies:


Characteristic of Short Channel

Characteristic of long channel

Market factors

Business users


Geographically concentrated

Geographically dispersed

Extensive technical knowledge & regular service required

Little technical knowledge & regular servicing not required

Large orders

Small Orders

Product Factors







Producer Factors

Manufacturers or producer has sufficient resources to perform channel functions

Manufacturer lacks sufficient resources to perform channel functions

Broad Product Line

Limited product line

Channel control important

Channel control not important

Competitive Factors

Manufacturing feels satisfied with marketing intermediaries’ performance in promotion

Manufacturer feels dissatisfied with marketing intermediaries’ performance in promotion

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