Sustainability is an essential goal for companies to pursue alongside their efforts to cope with a period of economic crisis and uncertainty. Technologically mature manufacturing sectors need to preserve their competitiveness, and process and product innovation may no longer be sufficient to stimulate demand. Strategic innovation is one possible option to address this challenge. However, methods to implement this new paradigm are still underexplored. This paper analyzes the Italian and Spanish ceramic tile industries as a prime example of process digitalization and environmental practices in the European manufacturing context. Through the application of multi-criteria analysis, this study aims to investigate the possibilities provided by strategic innovation to companies in this sector, in order to be able to compete with producers in emerging countries who use price strategies as the only lever of their competitiveness. To this end, dimensions relating to operations, market, economy, society and the environment are considered herein. Our results show that the multidimensionality of industrial organizations should stimulate manufacturing firms not only to look at customer needs from a price point of view, but to commit to including social and environmental attributes in their products, such as the green-circular premium and sustainability certification. These two practices represent strategic innovation. This presents a complex challenge involving widespread change that concerns entrepreneurship, management and industrial policies.