Title: Exploring the potential of virtual communities as a business model in banking: the customers' view

Authors: Dimitris K. Kardaras, Bill Karakostas

Addresses: Business Informatics Laboratory, Department of Business Administration, Athens University of Economics and Business, 76 Patission Street, Athens 104 34, Greece. ' Centre for HCI Design, School of Informatics, City University, Northampton Sq., London EC1V 0HB, UK

Abstract: Virtual Communities (VCs) are expected to become a new business model that may spawn opportunities for the new digital economy. The business potential of VCs is mainly in terms of increased trust among their members combined with quality services that may improve customer loyalty. This paper reports the findings of an empirical study that was carried out in the financial sector in the UK. This study also investigates the profile of potential members of a financial VC, and discusses the required services. The results are useful for both academics and practitioners who develop and manage VCs.

Keywords: virtual communities; customer loyalty; UK survey; United Kingdom; web based communities; business models; trust; service quality; financial services; e-banking; electronic banking.

DOI: 10.1504/IJWBC.2007.014241

International Journal of Web Based Communities, 2007 Vol.3 No.3, pp.316 - 331

Published online: 27 Jun 2007 *

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