Internet Banking: an Initial Look at Ghanaian Bank Consumer Perceptions

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Banks and Bank Systems, Volume 3, Issue 3, 2008

Atsede Woldie (United Kingdom), Robert Hinson (Ghana), Habib Iddrisu (United Kingdom), Richard Boateng (United Kingdom)

Internet banking: an initial look at Ghanaian bank consumer
perceptions
Abstract
Internet banking is a tool in the service delivery arsenal for banks. This study focuses on client-bank relationship and on how Internet adoption may improve the qualitative relationship between banks and firms in Ghana and the business they serve. The study adopted a triangulation approach in meeting its objectives. A sample of 180 companies was sampled from the manufacturing, commerce, and services sectors of the economy. The findings of the study were mainly reported by means of descriptive statistics. The research findings indicate that Internet banking services are at their infant stage. Of the respondents, 68% had heard about Internet banking while 33% have never heard about it. 55% of the respondents said security concerns were the major barrier to the adoption of Internet banking. 55.6% of the firms that responded were not connected to the Internet whiles 44.4% were. Majority of the interviewees said they would still visit the bank even if their company adopts Internet banking. Access to their account balance and understanding customer needs are the most important factors for facilitating a good bank client relationship for firms in Ghana and their banks. Banks in Ghana need to start considering the introduction of Internet strategies in the development of customer relationship management (CRM) programs, which will ultimately increase the customer lifetime value of their clients. The present paper is one of the first Internet banking studies from a West African context on the usefulness of Internet banking technologies to bank clients. Keywords: internet banking, Ghana, service quality, consumer perceptions, Internet adoption. JEL Classification: G21.

Introduction1
Over the last decade, the Ghanaian government has
made a serious effort to pursue a ‘knowledge-based
economy’ agenda to make Ghana a preferred
information and communication technology (ICT)
destination. The use of the Internet in Ghana has
also seen significant increases since the
liberalization of the telecommunication industry in
1990s. The country had 18.1 Internet users per
1,000 people in 2005 as compared to 1 Internet user
in 1999 (ITU, 2007). The number of PC ownership
doubled to 52 owners per 1,000 people between
1999 and 2005. A National ICT for Accelerated
Development policy was introduced in 2003 with
the objective of engineering an ICT-led socioeconomic development process. The impact of these initiatives is evident in the November 2005 edition
of African Business. The article on the Ghana
profile page, entitled “Cake is bigger but the slices
are smaller”, claimed interestingly “Ghana has the
most developed IT sector in West Africa”. For a
country which hitherto could clearly be described as
sitting at the disadvantaged end of the global digital
divide, it becomes important to ascertain how ICT is
affecting the Ghanaian banking business, which also
tends to contribute substantially to Ghana’s service
sector revenues (ISSER, 2005).
Electronic banking (e-banking) has been purported
by academic and practitioner oriented literature as
one of the means in which ICTs can and is impact© Atsede Woldie, Robert Hinson, Habib Iddrisu, Richard Boateng, 2008.

ing the banking sector (Gurau, 2002; Bradley and
Stewart, 2003; Shih and Fang, 2004; Boateng and
Molla, 2006). The phenomenon, e-banking, as used
in this paper, refers to the deployment of banking
services and products over electronic and communication networks directly to customers (Singh and Malhotra, 2004). These electronic and communication networks include Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), direct dial-up connections, private and

public networks, the Internet, televisions, mobile
devices and telephones. In...
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