In 2012, assistant professors Faruk Aml Konuk and Filiz Konuk of the department of business administration of the the Sakarya university in Sakarya Turkey, published the research article, The Relationship between Service Quality, Economic and Switching Costs in Retail Banking, which details how the banking sector In Turkey and the operating banks within it have been forced to more proactively strive to retain their current customers rather than attracting new customers as a way to improve their competitive positioning. As a result, the areas of service quality, economic costs and switching costs have been researched.
Overview of Article
The objective of the article was to study the importance of service quality, economic costs and switching costs as an antecedent of consumer behaviour . For the purpose of research, the authors defined service quality as a global judgement or attitude, relating to the overall superiority of the service. Highlighted in this section is that due to its importance, researchers have started to develop scales to measure this concept known as SERVQUAL, which focuses on customer expectations and perceptions and measure the dimensions of tangibles, reliability, responsiveness and empathy in service quality. For the purposes of the study, the authors have defined economic costs as the sacrifice a customer has to make to obtain a product or service including both financial and non financial. They have also defined switching costs as the costs the customer incur by changing their providers. The Relationship between Service Quality, Economic and Switching Costs in Retail Banking Konuk et al 2012 volume 2 issue 1 pages 2
The authors are ultimately trying to prove a relationship between the three. They attempt to show that at the beginning service quality acts as a determinant of the behavioural decisions which a customer will make and based on this the economic and switching costs which the customer would experience as a result of their decision, with the outcome reflecting their views and opinions through increased or decreased loyalty and word of mouth intentions.
Thus far the authors have broadly defined their research areas and given some insight into the reason for their studies and the theory linking it together.
The authors have used literature to gather ideas and further knowledge on the subject area as well as a justification of knowledge and opinions they already have. The following is the 9 hypothesis the authors were looking to test with the study 1) Service quality has a negative effect on economic costs 2) Service quality has a positive effect on switching costs 3) Economic costs have a negative effect on switching costs 4) Economic costs have a negative effect on loyalty 5) Economic costs have a negative effect on loyalty 6) Switching costs have a positive effect on loyalty 7) Switching costs have a positive effect on word of mouth 8) Service quality has a positive effect on loyalty 9) Service quality has a positive effect on word of mouth intentions The Relationship between Service Quality, Economic and Switching Costs in Retail Banking Konuk et al 2012 volume 2 issue 1 pages 3-5 (TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM ARTICLE)
The chosen method to gather information to disseminate and then test the hypothesis set out was a simple cross sectional survey of customers. The survey consisted of three parts all with the aim of securing correct and accurate information about the customer. A major strong point of the research is how well diversified the measurement instruments are depending on the research area which has ultimately improved the accuracy of the quantitative data they will be using as a basis for the tests. For the service quality area, the researchers have utilised dimensions of the SERQUAL model. The researchers smartly and logically chose areas which were most important, the most prominent being