The surpluses and shortages in business-to-business marketing theory and research

Jagdish N. Sheth, Arun Sharma

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Purpose - Business-to-business marketing has come of age in the last three decades and research in this area has been extensive and impressive. This paper examines the extant body of business-to-business marketing research and identifies surpluses and shortages with the goal of stimulating future research. Design/methodology/approach - This paper focuses on two questions regarding future business-to business marketing. First, what has been the focus of understanding in business-to-business marketing theory and what should be its future focus? Second, what has been the purpose or objective to study business-to-business marketing and what should be the future objective for research? Findings - It is found that research in business-to-business marketing is fundamentally changing and will continue to change. The paper identifies areas of business-to-business marketing research that have received surplus attention and areas that require additional attention. Practical implications - The paper provides guidelines for future exploration of the business-to-business research domain. Originality/value - The paper is analogous to the widely cited paper by Sheth (1979) that reviewed the state of consumer behavior research and identified areas that had been unexplored or under-explored, and in the process provided an impetus for new research in consumer behavor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)422-427
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Business and Industrial Marketing
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 16 2006


  • Business-to-business marketing
  • Marketing theory
  • Research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Marketing


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