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Traditional-bank customers' digital-only bank resistance: evidence from South Africa

Jacques Nel (Department of Business Management, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa)
Christo Boshoff (Department of Business Management, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa)

International Journal of Bank Marketing

ISSN: 0265-2323

Article publication date: 20 January 2021

Issue publication date: 8 June 2021

986

Abstract

Purpose

Digital-only banks are emerging as challenger banks to the traditional-bank business model in South Africa. However, traditional-bank customers could resist the use of digital-only banks, theoretically due to their satisfaction with the status quo. Consequently, inertia arising from bias to traditional banks based on status quo satisfaction could engender their resistance to become customers of digital-only banks. The objective of the study, therefore, is to investigate how traditional-bank customers' inertia influences digital-only bank resistance.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a literature review, digital-only bank adoption barriers and cognitive-based initial distrusting beliefs were identified as mediators of the influence of inertia on digital-only bank resistance. To test the mediation model empirically, data was collected from 610 traditional-bank-only customers.

Findings

The five adoption barriers fully mediate the influence of inertia on cognitive-based initial distrusting beliefs. The five barriers in serial with cognitive-based initial distrusting beliefs partially mediate the influence of traditional-bank customers' inertia on digital-only bank resistance. Cognitive-based initial distrusting belief is an essential factor in the mechanism underlying the influence of traditional-bank customers' inertia on digital-only bank resistance.

Originality/value

Digital-only banks are relatively new. Research is therefore lacking in consumer behavior explaining the use of digital-only banks by traditional-bank customers in the South African context. A further novelty of the study is the empirical assessment of mechanisms that explain the influence of inertia on cognitive-based initial distrusting beliefs, and the influence of inertia on resistance behavior.

Keywords

Citation

Nel, J. and Boshoff, C. (2021), "Traditional-bank customers' digital-only bank resistance: evidence from South Africa", International Journal of Bank Marketing, Vol. 39 No. 3, pp. 429-454. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJBM-07-2020-0380

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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