Purpose – To ascertain customers' usage level and perceptions of the image of rural community banks (RCBs) in Ghana. This research examines whether women and men differ in their levels of satisfaction and expectation about the banks' services. It also assesses the contribution of RCBs towards infrastructural development in the rural areas. Design/methodology/approach – Both desk and primary research methods were employed. Face‐to‐face interviews took place in 15 bank branches in the eastern region of Ghana. Over 170 respondents consisting of 105 males and 65 females co‐operated for this study. Analyses are presented in a statistical format using mean score and t ‐test. Findings – RCBs are perceived as fairly active in rural infrastructural development, and have collaborated with NGOs to help identify, mobilise and educate rural groups in the usage and benefits of banking services. Men and women are gradually cultivating the banking culture. Both genders perceive the quality of financial advice, provision of information and service delivery as areas that need significant improvement. There are no significant differences between both genders in their perceptions and expectation of the banks services. Research limitations/implications – The sample size was limited to only one part of Ghana and may not be entirely representative. Practical implications – This study provides a meaningful insight into consumer behaviour in rural banking sector and useful platform for future studies in marketing of financial services in a developing country context. Originality/value – The study is unique in that it looks at a rural banking service provision in a sub‐Sahara African country, a setting that markedly differs from the traditional high street banks sectors in the developed world. The results will enable financial service providers to consider the changing needs and wants of RCBs customers.
International Journal of Emerging Markets – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 11, 2008
Keywords: Banks; Gender; Poverty; Ghana; Service levels; Communication
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