The analysis of antecedents of bank-SME loyalty
: professionalism, relationship quality, corporate image & switching barrier as a moderator

  • Zahida Sarwary

    Student thesis: Master, one year


    The aim of this study is to combine the various concepts, in the field of SME in service based industry, being developed independently by researchers. The goal is to provide a comprehensive overview on the rules and interactions of the involved factors. An investigation of the influence of corporate image and relationship quality on customer loyalty, among SMEs in the banking sector, is carried out. The moderating role of switching barrier is investigated. Furthermore the background variables, affecting relationship quality and corporate image, are investigated. This provides a deeper understanding on how customer loyalty is achieved. Such a deeper understanding on achieving customer loyalty can be regarded as a competitive tool especially in the banking sector with many financial providers and the products being alike. This article is based on 335 valid questionnaires returned from SME customers established in Sweden. The negative impact of Switching barrier on customer loyalty indicates that switching barrier should be avoided thus it decreases customer loyalty and does not have a moderating role. Instead focus should be put on delivering high professionalism which will contribute to higher level of relationship quality and positive perception of corporate image. This, in turn, will eliminate the moderating role of switching barrier and lead to customer loyalty.

    Date of Award2013-Apr-29
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorTimurs Umans (Supervisor), Bengt Igelström (Examiner) & Emil Numminen (Examiner)

    Educational program

    • Degree of Bachelor of Science in Business and Economics

    Courses and Subjects

    • Miscellaneous

    University credits

    • 15 HE credits

    Swedish Standard Keywords

    • Business Administration (50202)


    • loyalty
    • relationship quality
    • corporate image
    • switching barrier
    • expertise
    • ethical behavior
    • intimacy
    • b2b
    • sme
    • banking
    • marketing

    Cite this