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This chapter starts with the introduction of the research's topic. Firstly, I will explain the overview for the customer loyalty. After that, research background, problem statement and research objective will discuss on this chapter. Besides, the justification, scope of the study, and limitation of the study hand been thoroughly discussed in chapter one. Finally, I will give definition for the importance term that I often use in this research.
Nowadays, Customer loyalty is very important if an organization want to retain its current customers. Gaining customer loyalty becomes a key objective for banking organizations. Customer loyalty defines loyalty as "a deeply held commitment to rebuy or repatronize a preferred product or service consistently in the future, despite situational influences and marketing efforts having the potential to cause switching behavior". (Oliver 1997,p.360) This has lead to a different definition of customer loyalty, "an ongoing propensity to buy the brand, usually as one of several" (Uncles et al., 2003, Gee et al., 2008,).
Customer loyalty can be determined by looking at the number of purchases made by the customer from the product portfolio of a company, the frequency of acquisition, the percentage from the total expenditures made by a customer for a certain product or service. (Filip and Anghel, 2009). Besides, customer loyalty can be determined through consumer preferences and their affective disposition toward the bank, which are combined with repeat purchasing. Due to Filip and Constantinescu, 2007, we can conclude that repetitive customer behavior is not enough for us to be considered loyal towards the banking industry. (Filip and Anghel, 2009)
Many academics need have more knowledge and better understanding to the process of developing customer loyalty (McMullan and Audrey, 2008, Oliver, 1999; Knox and Walker, 2001; Tsaur et al. 2002). When the academic have enough knowledge, they can know how to segmentation the customers according to different levels of customer. So, Different level customers have different strategies based on their background. In addition, the relationship between competition and loyalty becomes stronger when level of competition increase. Services sector is one of the examples because this sector has a lot of choices and rapidly emerging innovative products and services (McMullan and Audrey, 2008, Stevens, 2000). However, the academic and practical knowledge of the determinants of customer loyalty is very important for a organization to survive in market.
In overall, we can say that develop an efficient customer loyalty strategic is very important for a organization includes banks. A successful strategic can help the organization to retain the customer in order to survive in highly competitive market. So, bank must build a strong customer relationship with their customer.
1.2 Background of the research
In Malaysia, there are many bank located in different states, banking sector becoming increasing competitive from day to day. Due to the rapid development of information technology, it has made a great impact in the banking industry deeply. The high technology can provide the customer better alternative than before. It can help the customer to fulfill their financial needs. So, many bank need to keep improve themselves with the high technology to retain the customer.
In order to retain the customer, the bankers need to have different kind of marketing and management strategic. One of the strategies is to understand their customer needs and try to satisfy their needs. There are several reasons that can influence customers' selection of a bank. The range of services, rates, fees and prices charged can influence the customer mind when they want choose the suitable bank to keep their money .(Cohen et al., 2006;Abratt and Russell, 1999). Furthermore, providing service excellence, innovative products are vital to succeed in the banking industry.
As conclusion, description above is my research background. It relate to the problem statement and objective that I am going to study during this research.
1.3 Problem statement
Customer loyalty becoming an important element of banking strategy in today's increasingly competitive environment. Nowadays, the entire bankers need to compete with each other to survive in this highly competitive market. The entire banker must identify the problem occur in the bank and try to manage the problem in a proper way. Employees play an important role in a banking industry. Employees represent the professionalism of an organization. So, the banker must make sure their employee willingness to solve problems when emergency case happens. They must train their employee when how to dealing with customer. The employee must deal with customer friendliness and have sufficient knowledge to help customer. Other than that, the employee must have communication skills, and selling skills when dealing with customers.
Many researchers conclude that retaining an existing bank customer costs less than creating a new customer. They discover that the cost of creating a new customer has been expected to be five times more than that of retaining an existing customer (Gan et al., 2006,Reichheld, 1996).
Some researcher has explored the influence of several factors on loyalty. There are service quality, customer satisfaction, corporate image, commitment and conflict handling. Based on the research, this several factor have great impact on customer loyalty. Unfortunately, many banking industry does not fulfill the requirement of this several factor.
Some banks do not understand the customer needs and provide the wrong information to customer. Other than that, some banks do not provide the good quality of service. The bank staff does not know how to deal with customer; the customer will think the staff no manners and do not professional. Besides, some bank does not build the strong relationship with the loyalty customer by giving them some special offer. If retention criteria are not well managed, customers may still leave their banks and find another bank to manage their wealth. In order to settle those problems, the bank must know how to handle the problem and try to satisfy the customer needs.
Is there any significant relationship between reliability and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between responsiveness and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between assurance and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between empathy and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between tangibles and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between customer satisfaction and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between corporate image and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between commitment and customer loyalty?
Is there any significant relationship between conflict handling and customer loyalty?
1.4 Research Objective
Research had show that customer loyalty is very important for an organization. Therefore, the objective of this research is to analyze the factor that can influence customer loyalty towards banking industry. Besides, the purpose of this study is to investigate how the bank to strengthen the relationship between bank and customer. The target respondent for this research is undergraduate university student.
The study has some specific objective are as follow,
i) To determine important factors affect the customer loyalty on bank
ii) To analyze the relationship between reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy, tangibles, customer satisfaction, corporate image, commitment and conflict handling.
iii) To make suggestion that could assist bank manager to increase customer loyalty towards bank.
1.5 Research Justification
Nowadays, gaining customer loyalty becomes the purpose of a bank in order to survive in the competitive market. So, all the banking organization tries to make every customer satisfy their services. The result of this research will be able to provide an insight into how the bank manager to determine the factor that can affect the customer loyalty towards banking industry. All the relationship between the factors and customer loyalty can help the bank manager to making more effective market strategic.
Besides, this result also can benefit all organizations includes banking industry. With the research, they can determine the factor that can influence the customer loyalty and the relationship between the factors and customer loyalty. Therefore, they can learn and make decision at the better way.
Furthermore, the findings of this research are very useful to local banking industry. The findings of this research can provide some useful feedbacks that help the bank manager to improve the bank service quality. It is important to banking industry as it has direct impact of customer loyalty. If the improvement of the bank services parallel with the needs of the customer, the bank can increase the amount of customer satisfaction. High level customer satisfaction will reduce the customer switching.
1.6 Limitation of the study
This study only focuses on banking industry in Malaysia due to the time limitation and other country banking industry hard to do more research on it. Besides, the customer loyalty also affect buy other external factors such as price.
Besides, the research only focuses on undergraduate university students which include the local university and private university. It is hard to find target respondent other than undergraduate university student to do the survey.
It is assumed that the respondents will answer the question in an honest manner. So, the results get from the research maybe not accurate.
1.7 Scope of the study
This research target respondents consist of a group of 200 undergraduate university students. The undergraduate university students must be a bank customer. In this research, data are collected through primary research by the questionnaire survey form. Suggestion, recommendations from the bank customer can get through the survey form. In order to achieve the objective of the research, the questionnaires will be set based on research objective and hypotheses statement. It can make sure that the data that had been collected are more accurate and useful for the research.
As a conclusion, bank should always keep improve the services in order to compete with other competitor. Customer loyalty is a key success for a banking industry. The cost of creating a new customer has been expected to be five times more than that of retaining an existing customer (Reichheld, 1996).
A bank is a financial institution that accepts deposits and channels those deposits into lending activities. Banks primarily provide financial services to customers while enriching investors. Government restrictions on financial activities by banks vary over time and location. Banks are important players in financial markets and offer services such as investment funds and loans.
Customer loyalty can be define as "a deeply held commitment to rebuy or repatronize a preferred product or service consistently in the future, despite situational influences and marketing efforts having the potential to cause switching behavior".(Oliver 1997,p.360)
Customer satisfaction is defined as "the customer's response to the evaluation of the perceived discrepancy between prior expectations and the actual performance of the product/service as perceived after its consumption". (Che-Ha,Tse, 2007 and Tse and Wilton, 1988,p.127)
1.10 Organization of Research Project
This research project consists of five chapters which is introduction, literature review and research methodology, results and discussion, conclusions and recommendations.
Chapter one is introduction of the research project. It begins with the overview and background of the topic. After that, this chapter also covers background of the research and problem statement. After identify objective of research, research justification will be discuss. Finally, limitation of the study and scope of the study will be explained.
Chapter two is literature review. It presents the variables that involve in this research. The variables include reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy, tangibles, customer satisfaction, corporate image, commitment and conflict handling. First, I define the key terms and variables, and then followed by literature review in the context of factors affecting customer loyalty towards bank. Finally, a small conclusion will be discussed.
Chapter three states the research methodology. It begins with introduction and then followed by a complete research framework to illustrate the relationship between the dependent variable and independent variable. After that, nine hypotheses were developed to test the correlation. Sampling procedures and sources of data will also discuss in this chapter. Furthermore, some technique to develop questionnaire also will discuss.
Chapter four presents the results from the data analyses. The analysis examines the results how whether the variables can influence the bank customer loyalty. The analysis can find out there is any significant relationship between the independent variables and dependent variable.
Chapter five states the recommendation and conclusion. It discusses the major finding and concludes the study. It also highlights the implication of this study, limitations and some suggestion for the future research.