Title: Building inter-firm relationships online: perspectives from the Australian internet banking industry

Authors: Sally Rao

Addresses: School of Commerce, The University of Adelaide, 233 North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia

Abstract: The internet|s impact on inter-firm relationships has received little attention in the academic literature. This research develops a conceptual framework about relationship constructs in an internet environment. Data collected from 215 financial controllers/managers who use internet banking service at an organisational level, are used to investigate the hypothesised relationships between variables. Partial support for the model is provided. Results showed that effective internet use may enhance exchange relationships mainly through improved communication. Indeed, desirable relationship outcomes are indirectly associated with the higher levels of trading efficiency facilitated by business-to-business (B2B) internet use. The findings of this research add to the body of marketing knowledge and provide guidelines for bank managers seeking to use the internet more effectively in managing their relationships with corporate customers.

Keywords: internet use; inter-firm relationships; internet banking; structural bonds; social bonds; relationship marketing; Australia; e-banking; online banking; communication; bank–business relationships; e-commerce; electronic commerce; e-business; electronic business.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIMA.2004.006330

International Journal of Internet Marketing and Advertising, 2004 Vol.1 No.4, pp.371 - 387

Available online: 20 Feb 2005 *

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