1 Technovation 29 (2009) An investigation into the acceptance of in Saudi Arabia Sabah Abdullah Al-Somali, Roya Gholami, Ben Clegg Operations & Information Management Group, Aston Business School, Aston Triangle, Birmingham B47ET, UK Abstract Although a regional leader, Internet banking in Saudi Arabia is yet to be fully utilised as a value-adding tool to improve customer relationships and achieve cost advantages. The aim of this study was to identify the factors that encourage customers to adopt online banking in Saudi Arabia. The research constructs were developed based on the technology acceptance model (TAM) and incorporated some extra important control variables. The model was empirically verified to examine the factors influencing the adoption behaviour of 400 customers. The findings of the study suggests that the quality of the Internet connection, the awareness of and its benefits, the social influence and computer self-efficacy have significant effects on the perceived usefulness (PU) and perceived ease of use (PEOU) of acceptance. Education, trust and resistance to change also have significant impact on the attitude towards the likelihood of adopting. The implications of the findings are discussed and suggestions for future research are presented. r 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Keywords: Online banking; Technology acceptance model; Saudi Arabia; Developing countries 1. Introduction The rapid diffusion of the Internet has radically changed the delivery channels used by the financial services industry. Many banks have established presence on the Internet using web technologies providing customers with the opportunity of performing interactive retail banking transactions (Aladwani, 2001). What attracts customers to Internet banking is the round-the-clock availability and ease of transactions and avoidance of queues and restrictive branch operating hours. Therefore, helps banks to retain their existing customers, improve customer satisfaction, increase banks market share, reduce administrative and operational cost and more importantly improve banks competitive positions (Khalfan et al., 2006; Almogbil, 2005). Factors affecting consumer acceptance and adoption of have been at the forefront of several research projects in the US (e.g. Lassar et al., 2005; Corresponding author. Tel.: addresses: (S.A. Al-Somali), (R. Gholami), (B. Clegg). Kolodinsky et al., 2004), throughout Europe (see Littler and Melanthiou, 2006; Pikkarainen et al., 2004; Howcroft et al., 2002; Karjaluoto et al., 2002; Daniel, 1999), Australasia (e.g. Lichtenstein and Williamson, 2006; Sathye, 1999), and Asia (see Yiu et al., 2007; Chan and Lu, 2004; Suh and Han, 2002). However, there is limited published work exploring the factors that capture the acceptance of Internet banking from the perspectives of customers in the context of developing countries in the Middle East. This paper focuses upon Saudi Arabia that has a diverse immigrant population, a Sharia, a legal system and a developing economy and therefore makes an interesting and unique case study. To date there have very few such studies, a notable exception is the study by Almogbil (2005) who studied Internet banking adoption in Saudi Arabia and he focused on adopters. However in contrast, the focus of this study is both adopters and non-adopters (i.e. potential adopters). As Saudi Arabia joined the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on November 2005, the researchers believe that findings from this study will aid the local commercial banks and the multinational banks to develop strategic plans in order to promote products or services, introduce more /$ - see front matter r 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. doi: /j.technovation
2 S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) sophisticated electronic facilities and applications and more importantly design easy, useful and trustworthy systems over the Internet. This paper addresses the following research questions: (1) what are the factors that influence the customers tendency to accept and use as a primary banking channel?; (2) what is the relative importance of these factors? and (3) what is the nature and strength of the relationship among these factors? 2. Theoretical background The theoretical framework in this paper is comprised of three sections. The first section addresses the current theories and models that can be used to explain customers acceptances of technology. Secondly, previous research on the critical factors which may have significant impact on the acceptance of will be discussed. Finally, the review will be concluded by proposing a model which will be used to understand customers acceptance of online banking in Saudi Arabia Information technology acceptance It has been found that users attitude towards the acceptance of a new information system (IS) has a critical impact on its success (Succi and Walter, 1999; Davis et al., 1989; Venkatesh and Davis, 1996). Researchers have been trying to find factors that influence individual s acceptance of information technology (IT) in order to enhance its usage. Several theoretical models have been proposed that have their roots in ISs, psychology and sociology (Venkatesh et al., 2003). The current study proposes the application of the technology acceptance model (TAM) to capture factors which have significant impact on the acceptance of. TAM as illustrated in Fig. 1 is one of the most utilised models for studying IS acceptance (Al-Gahtani, 2001; Venkatesh and Davis, 1996; Davis et al., 1989). TAM posits that two particular beliefs, perceived usefulness (PU) and perceived ease of use (PEOU) are main determinants of the attitudes (AT) toward using a new technology. PU concerns the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would enhance his or her job performance; while PEOU is defined as the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would be free of effort (Davis, 1989; Davis et al., 1989). These two beliefs create a favourable behavioural intention (BI) toward using the IT that consequently affects its self-reported use (Davis et al., 1989). Moreover, TAM postulates that BI is viewed as being jointly determined by the person s attitude towards using system (AT) and PU (Davis et al., 1989) TAM was adopted and based on the theory of reasoned action (TRA); this is a psychological theory that seeks to explain an individual s action which is determined by his/ her BI to perform it (Fishbein and Ajzen, 1975). Intention is considered a direct determinant of behaviour in the TRA that is influenced by the attitude (attitude toward performing behaviour), and subjective norms (social pressures to perform behaviour). TRA has been tested and used extensively as well as its extension, the theory of planned behaviour (TPB) (Ajzen, 1991). More recently, Venkatesh et al. (2003) proposed a more complete model for the understanding of the acceptance and the adoption of IT namely the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) which integrates eight previously established models on individual acceptance of IT. They state that four elements play a significant role as direct factor of user acceptance and usage behaviour, namely performance expectance, effort expectance, social influence and facilitating conditions. TAM has been the instrument in many empirical studies and it has been found that its ability to explain intention and attitude towards using IT is better than TRA and TPB (Mathieson, 1991). Chang (2008) used TAM to identify consumers acceptance of intelligent agent (IA) technology for the automation of auction websites. Chang (2008) used questionnaires of a total of 388 Taiwanese consumers with online auction experience and found that PU was the most influential in promoting intention to use auction website. The outcome of another study by Wang et al. (2003) confirmed the validity of TAM with different populations of users and different software choices. It is worth noting that King and He (2006) conducted a statistical metaanalysis of TAM as applied in various fields using 88 published studies and the results showed TAM to be a powerful, highly reliable, valid and robust predictive model that may be used in a variety of contexts. Moreover, Herna ndez s et al. s (2008) study demonstrated that a basic TAM model can correctly explain the acceptance level of a technology in the business context as long as the focus and subject proposed are correct. Many researchers have introduced additional variables to TAM and suggested that these external variables may be Perceived usefulness (PU) Perceived ease of use (PEOU) Attitude towards using (AT) Behavioural intention to use (BI) Actual System use Fig. 1. TAM model (Davis et al., 1989).
3 132 ARTICLE IN PRESS S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) added as a way of improving the model s predictive power (AlSukkar, 2005; Davis et al., 1989; Davis, 1993). Herna ndez et al. (2008) stated that in spite of these extensions, the majority of studies in the business environment attain values (R 2 ) of between 1% and 45%, with only a few exceeding this figure Factors influencing acceptance Many factors are seen to be influencing the acceptance of. It is important to take these factors into account. This study has taken additional factors related to Saudi Arabia and included them into the model as discussed below Quality of the Internet connection The quality of the Internet connection is an essential component for any Internet-based application. The Internet was introduced in Saudi Arabia in 1998 and is controlled by the Saudi government and fire walls were created to block users from accessing material on the Internet that violates religion or encroaches on the Saudi culture (e.g. pornographic sites). Sathye (1999) used Internet access as one of the factors affecting the adoption of in her research. Without a proper Internet connection the use of is not possible. Almogbil s (2005) study confirms that there is a significant relationship between the speed of Internet access and the use of services. He found that 63% of the customers in Saudi Arabia access the Internet through dial up services Awareness of services and its benefits According to Sathye (1999) the use of services is quite a new experience to many customers and low awareness of is a critical factor in causing customers not to adopt. In his study of Australian customers, Sathye (1999) found that customers were not aware about the benefits, advantages and disadvantages associated with. This is also consistent with Howcroft et al. (2002), confirming that lack of awareness of services and its benefits are found to be reasons for consumers reluctance to use the services offered by banks Trust Consumers trust in their online transactions is important and has been identified as a key to the development of e-commerce (Yousafzai et al., 2003). According to Suh and Han (2002), the issue of trust is more important in online as opposed to offline banking. Many researchers agree that trust is more important in because transactions of this nature contain sensitive information and parties involved in the financial transaction are concerned about access to critical files and information transferred via the Internet (Alsajjan and Dennis, 2006; Suh and Han, 2002). In another study, Mukherjee and Nath (2003) tested a model of trust in India in which shared value ; communication and opportunistic behaviour were key antecedents of trust. They concluded that both shared value and communication played a significant positive role on trust and that trust had a significant positive influence on commitment Social influence Venkatesh and Morris (2000) confirm that social influence plays an important role in determining the acceptance and usage behaviour of adopters of new ITs. In Taylor and Todd s (1995) study, social influences were equivalent to subjective norm and defined as other people s opinion, superior influence, and peer influence. Furthermore, customers may have unfavourable or favourable perceptions towards use because of the perceptions of a family member, acquaintances or peers influence. In a similar vein, Davis et al. (1989) believed that in some circumstances people might use a technology to comply with others mandates rather than their own feelings and beliefs Resistance to change The issue of customers resistance to change from traditional ways of conducting banking activities to online banking has received considerable attention in the literature (e.g. Sathye, 1999; Wallis Report, 1997). Generally, unless such a need is fulfilled, customers may not be prepared to change from the present ways of operating. Daniel (1999) finds in his study that there is a high level of customers inertia in changing their established banking activities to Computer self-efficacy Computer self-efficacy is defined as an individual s selfconfidence in his or her ability to perform tasks across multiple computer application domains (Monsuwe et al., 2004). Several studies have examined the relationship between self-efficacy with respect to computer use (e.g. Wang et al., 2003; Eastin, 2002; Bandura, 1977; Monsuwe et al., 2004; Wang and Newlin, 2002). Davis et al. (1989) and Wang et al. (2003), find that computer self-efficacy and perceived ease of use are related. In the area of online banking, researchers have found positive relationships between perceptions of convenience and the use of online banking (Wang et al., 2003; Gerrard and Cunningham, 2003; Polatoglu and Ekin, 2001; Lassar et al., 2005). Polatoglu and Ekin (2001) imply that customers, who are familiar with the Internet and , should not find Internet banking to be complex. Based on the theoretical and empirical support from the IS literature, it can be concluded that, the stronger a person s self-efficacy beliefs, the more likely he or she tries to achieve the required outcome.
4 S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Demographics characteristic The review of the literature concerning a typical online banking user reveals that a typical user can be classified as a highly educated, relatively young and wealthy person with a good knowledge of computers and especially the Internet (Karjaluoto et al., 2002). Many studies recognise that demographic factors impact heavily on consumer attitudes and behaviour regarding (Alagheband, 2006; Sathye, 1999; Lai and Li, 2005; Lassar et al., 2005; Eastin, 2002; Lee and Lee, 2001; Burke, 2002). Sathye (1999) indicated that young, educated, and wealthy consumers were among those most likely to adapt online banking in Australia. 3. Research model Drawing upon the earlier discussion based on the theoretical background, this study investigated the determinants of customer attitudes towards acceptance in Saudi Arabia using an extended TAM taking into account the effect of a few additional important control variables (e.g. the quality of Internet connection, awareness of and its benefits, social influence, computer-related self-efficacy, trust, resistance to change and demographic characteristic). PEOU and PU influence an individual s attitude towards using ; in turn, attitude will influence the intention to use online banking services and therefore influence the actual use of. Actual use will be predicted by individual s adoption intention (AI). The extended TAM used in this study is illustrated in Fig Research hypotheses Several hypotheses were constructed for testing as summarised in Table 1 and the sources from which they have been derived. 4. Research methodology 4.1. Survey administration The survey method was used for collecting the data to test the hypotheses. A sample of 400 people was randomly chosen from the Saudi community. These people worked in different organisations and in different industries. All participants were bank customers selected randomly from universities, companies, Internet cafe s and businessmen from private and public sectors. Two hundred and two usable responses were collected, yielding a response rate of 50.5% (202/400). Direct delivery of the survey questionnaire to participants was preferred as opposed to using online or postal surveys because the postal system in Saudi Arabia is not reliable and the use of online surveys would exclude nonadopters of the Internet. Since the study focuses on customer attitudes towards the adoption and usage of online banking demographic items were including in the model testing. Table 2 summarises the demographic characteristics of the respondents. Forty-four per cent of the respondents were male and the largest proportion (35%) of respondents by age group, were those in the years old category. Overall 22% of the respondents indicated as their preferred method for performing Control Variables Social Influence (SI) Awareness of services (AW) Self Efficacy (SE) Quality of Internet connection (QI) Control Variables H2 H6 H1 H4 Resistance to change (RC) Trust (TR) Perceived Usefulness (PU) H11 Perceived Ease of Use (PEOU) H12 H13 H5 H3 H14 Attitude Towards Use (ATT) H15 H7 H8 H9 H10 Adoption Intention (AI) Age Gender Education Income Control Variables Online Banking Usage (U) Fig. 2. Proposed research model the extended TAM.
5 134 ARTICLE IN PRESS S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Table 1 Research hypotheses Hypotheses H1: Quality of the Internet connection has a positive impact on customer s perceived ease of use H2: Awareness of services and its benefits has a positive impact on customer s perceived usefulness H3: Customer s trust in site has a positive impact on his/her attitude towards using H4: Social influence has a positive impact on customer s perceived usefulness H5: Resistance to change has significant impact on customer s attitude towards using online banking H6: Higher computer self-efficacy has a positive impact on customer s perceived ease of use H7: Age has a significant impact on customer s attitude towards using. Young customers are more likely to adopt online banking H8: Gender has a significant impact on customer s attitude towards using online banking. Males are more likely to adopt online banking H9: Education has a positive impact on customer s attitude towards using H10: Income has a significant impact on customer s attitude towards using H11: Customer s perceived ease of use has a positive impact on his/her perceived usefulness of H12: Customer s perceived ease of use has a positive impact on his/her attitude towards using H13: Customer s perceived ease of use has a positive impact on his/her attitude towards using Source Pikkarainen et al. (2004) AlSukkar and Hassan (2005) Sathye (1999) Yousafzai et al. (2003) Pikkarainen et al. (2004) Pikkarainen et al. (2004) AlSukkar (2005) AlSukkar and Hassan (2005) Venkatesh and Davis (2000) Sathye (1999) Alagheband (2006) Agarwal and Karahanna (2000) Eastin (2002) Wang et al. (2003) Pituch and Lee (2006) Eastin (2002) Alagheband (2006) Lai and Li (2005) Davis (1986) Davis (1989) Davis et al. (1989) Agarwal and Karahanna (2000) Lederer et al. (2000) Venkatesh and Davis (2000) Table 1 (continued ) Hypotheses H14: Customer s perceived usefulness has a positive impact on his/her intention to use online banking H15: Customer s attitude towards using online banking has a positive impact on his/her intention to use it Table 2 Profile of survey sample Respondents characteristics Source Number of respondents who answer (n ¼ 202) Moon and Kim (2001) Lai and Li (2005) Gender Male Female Age Percentage (%) Education High school Bachelor s Master s Doctoral Other Income (in SAR) a Less than 50, , , , , , , , , More than 300, Level of computer literacy Expert Advanced Intermediate Some capability Beginner Don t know how to use computer Internet access location At home At work At school In Internet café In a friend s place I do not use the Internet Preferred methods of performing banking transactions ATMs Visit bank Telephone Online banking services a 1USD$ ¼ 3.75 SAR.
6 S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) banking transactions and only 9% of the respondents visited the bank to conduct their banking transactions. ATM usage prevailed as the main means of carrying out banking transactions. The survey respondents were generally well educated with over 25% holding an advanced degree and 47% having a 4-year first degree. The results indicate that the largest proportion (33%) of respondents had advanced computer literacy and only a tiny proportion claimed to have no or little computer ability Measurement development Measurement items used in this study were adapted from previously validated measures or were developed on the base of a literature review (Table 1) or were derived from thorough consultation with IS experts to ensure their reliability and validity. Moreover, a seven-point likert scale ranging from (1) strongly disagree to (7) strongly agree were used to assess responses. A pilot test of the measures was conducted on a representative sample of 20 people randomly chosen and questionnaire statements were modified based on the results of the pilot test. The final questionnaire items used to measure each construct are presented in Table Data analysis The technique of partial least-squares (PLS) analysis, an implementation of structural equation modeling (SEM), was applied to test the measurement model to determine the internal consistency reliability and construct validity of the multiple items scales used to operationalise the study variables. PLS is a second-generation multivariate techniques that helps in construct testing of the psychometric properties of the scales used to estimate the parameters of a structural model, i.e., the strength and direction of the relationships among the model variables (Lohmoller, 1989; Fronell, 1982, 1987). Basically, PLS and LISREL are the most widely used SEM-based techniques. In this study, PLS was preferred to LISREL for analysis due to the data distribution and sample size. LISREL requires relatively large samples for accurate estimation and relatively few variables and constructs for convergence. On the other hand, PLS is applicable to small samples in estimation as well as testing and appears to converge quickly even for large models with many variables and constructs (Lohmoller, 1989) Validation of the measurement scale The data analysis employed a two-phase approach suggested by Anderson and Gerbing (1988) in order to assess the reliability and validity of the measures before using them in the research model. The first phase includes the analysis of the measurement model, while the second phase tests the structural relationships among latent constructs. The test of the measurement model involves the Table 3 Summary of measurement scales Constructs Perceived usefulness (PU) Perceived ease of use (PEOU) Behavioural intention to use (AI) Attitude towards using (ATT) Quality of Internet connection (QI) Awareness of services and its benefits (AW) Measures PU 1 PU 2 PU 3 PU 4 Online banking enables me to accomplish banking activities more quickly Online banking enables me to improve performance of utilising banking services Online banking enables me to accomplish more banking activities Online banking gives me greater control over financial banking activities PEOU 1 Interaction with site is clear and understandable PEOU 2 It is easy to do what I want to do using PEOU 3 Learning to use will be or has been easy PEOU 4 I expect to become or I am already skilled at using PEOU 5 Overall, I expect will be easy for me to use AI 1 I will use on regular basis in the future AI 2 I expect my use of for handling my financial transactions to continue in the future AI 3 I will strongly recommend others to use ATT 1 ATT 2 ATT 3 ATT 4 QI 1 QI 2 QI 3 QI 4 QI 5 Aw 1 Aw 2 Aw 3 Aw 4 Online banking development will support customers I will encourage the use of online banking among my colleagues I am not satisfied with using traditional banking services when carrying out financial activities Overall, the attitude towards online banking usage is positive My access to the Internet is easy. The Internet enables to handle my online financial transactions accurately Using the Internet for handling online financial transactions is efficient The Internet enables customers to access the bank s website 7/24 The Internet guarantees that all transactions to the bank have been completed I receive enough information about services I receive enough information about the benefits of I receive enough information of using I never received information about from the bank Trust (TR) TR 1 The site is trustworthy TR 2 I trust in the benefits of the decisions of the site TR 3 The site keeps its promises and commitments
7 136 Table 3 (continued ) ARTICLE IN PRESS S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Examination of research hypotheses Constructs Measures TR 4 TR 5 The site keeps customers best interest in mind I trust my bank s site Social influence (SI) SI 1 I would consider using if someone personally recommended it SI 2 When trying new technology, I trust my own instinct more than advice from others SI 3 Most people who are important to me think that I should use or continue to use Resistance to change (RC) Computer self-efficacy (SE) RC 1 RC 2 RC 3 SE 1 SE 2 SE 3 SE 4 I am interested to hear about new technological developments Technological developments have enhanced our lives I feel comfortable in changing and using services for my financial activities I could conduct on line banking transactions if I had only the system manuals for reference I could conduct transactions if I had seen someone else using it before trying it myself I could conduct transactions if I could call someone for help if I got stuck I am confident of using system even if I have never used such a system before estimation of internal consistency reliability as well as the convergent and discriminate validity of the research instruments, which indicates the strength measures used to test the proposed model (Fronell, 1982, 1987). As shown in Table 4, all reliability measures were well above the recommended level of 0.70 as an indicator for adequate internal consistency (Hair et al., 1995; Nunnally, 1978). The constructs also illustrated satisfactory convergent and discriminate validity. As suggested by Fornell and Larcher (1981), convergent validity is adequate when constructs have an average variance extracted (AVE) of at least 0.5. Convergent validity can also be examined when items loading on their associated factors are well above 0.5 (Hair et al., 1992). On the other hand, for satisfactory discriminate validity, the AVE from the construct should be greater than the variance shared between a particular construct and other constructs in the model (Chin, 1998). Table 5 illustrates the discriminant validity of constructs, with correlation among constructs and the square root of AVE on the diagonal. All indicators load more highly on their own constructs than on other constructs. All these results point to the convergent and discriminate validity of our instrument items. This section discusses the results relative to the structural model and the hypothesis formed for each construct. The structural model can be assessed by examining the path coefficients beta weight (b) which illustrates how strong is the relationships between the dependent and independent variables and the (R 2 ) value, which shows the amount of variance explained by independent variables. Both, the R 2 and the path coefficients indicate how well the model is performing. R 2 shows the predictive power of the model, and the values should be interpreted in the same way as R 2 in a regression analysis. The path coefficients should be significant and consistent with expectations (Chwelos et al., 2001). The software package used to perform the assessment of the research model was Partial Least Squares Version (Chin and Frye, 1995). The results of statistical analysis of the research model are shown in Fig. 3 and Table 6 lists the examination of the research hypothesis. There are 12 variables with significant statistical support. Quality of the Internet connection, the awareness of online banking and its benefits, the social influence and computer self-efficacy are correlated significantly with the PU and PEOU. Moreover, PU and PEOU (basic TAM constructs) are correlated with the attitudes towards use (ATT). The results of the statistical analysis of the research model showed that PU has significant correlation with intention to use or adopt (AI). Education, trust and resistance to change also are correlated with the attitude towards the likelihood of use. Moreover, age, gender and income are not correlated with ATT. It was found that social influence and awareness of services and its benefits together explain 77% of the variance in PU. Both paths had positive effects, with path coefficients of and 0.403, respectively, meaning that Hypotheses 2 and 4 were supported. Selfefficacy (SE) and quality of Internet connection did have significant effects on PEOU and together explain 72% of the variance. These two factors had positive path coefficients of and meaning that Hypotheses 6 and 1 were also supported. PEOU and PU influenced customer attitudes towards using, supporting Hypotheses 12 and 13. Theses factors had positive path coefficients and 0.797, respectively, and along with resistance to change, trust, age, gender, education and income, explained 85% of the variance in attitude towards use. As suggested by Hypotheses 5, 3 and 9, resistances to change, trust and education significantly impact customer attitudes towards using, with positive path coefficients 0.718, and 0.156, respectively. Surprisingly, age, gender and income had no effect on attitudes towards use, as indicated by the three nonsignificant and negative paths meaning that Hypotheses 7, 8 and 10 were not supported. Moreover, both Hypotheses 14 and 15 which suggest that PU and attitude towards
8 S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Table 4 Psychometric properties of the constructs Constructs Items Loading t-value Composite reliability Cronbachs alpha (a) Average variance extracted (AVE) Quality of Internet connection (QI) Awareness of services and its benefits (AW) Perceived usefulness (PU) Perceived ease of use (PEOU) Attitude towards use (ATT) Behavioural intention to use (AI) QI QI QI QI QI AW AW AW AW PU PU PU PU PEOU PEOU PEOU PEOU PEOU ATT ATT ATT ATT AI AI AI Trust (TR) TR TR TR TR TR Self-efficacy (SE) SE SE SE SE Social influence (SI) SI SI SI Resistance to change (RC) RC RC RC using have a significant positive influence on AI were supported with positive path coefficients and 0.683, respectively. Attitudes towards use explain 83% of the variance in AI with path coefficients of As a result, Hypothesis 15 was also supported (Table 5). Moreover, Hypothesis 11 which posits that PEOU has a positive impact on PU was supported and the empirical results provided a strong support for this hypothesis with positive path coefficients Discussion of findings The growth in the use of the internet has encouraged companies to advertise and sell their products and services online. Many banks and financial organisations have implemented new applications through the internet such as to increase efficiency, to reduce costs and to improve services quality. As more and more banking and financial institutions implement services, it is essential for these institutions to identify factors that influence customer attitudes towards adoption and usage of these services. The current study identifies several significant factors impacting customer attitudes towards acceptance in the Saudi commercial banks including, quality of Internet connection, trust, social influence, resistance to change, awareness of services and its benefits, computer self-efficacy and education. It is
9 138 ARTICLE IN PRESS S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Table 5 Discriminant validity of constructs Construct QI AW PU PEOU ATT AI TR SE SI RC QI AW PU PEOU ATT AI TR SE SI RC Note 1: Diagonal elements (in bold) are the square root of average variance extracted (AVE). Off-diagonal elements are the correlations among constructs. For discriminant validity, diagonal elements should be larger than the off-diagonal elements. Note 2: QI ¼ quality of Internet connection; AW ¼ awareness of services and its benefits; TR ¼ trust; SE ¼ self-efficacy; SI ¼ social influence; RC ¼ resistance to change; PU ¼ perceived usefulness; PEOU ¼ perceived ease of use; ATT ¼ attitude towards use; AI ¼ behavioural intention to use. Fig. 3. Results of structural model. important to emphasises the high explanatory power (R 2 ) achieved in this study in which attitudes towards use (ATT) explain 83% of the variance in AI. Moreover, PEOU, PU, resistance to change, trust, age, gender, education and income, explained 85% of the variance in attitude towards use. It is noteworthy that, Herna ndez et al. (2008) asserts that if the subject proposed is not correct, the model will always have R 2 that are far away from 100%. The current study demonstrated that the extended TAM model correctly explains the acceptance of in which all R 2 values were close to 100% and exceeded that of other studies which include a greater number of variables (Herna ndez et al., 2008). Interestingly that over half of the sample had advanced computer literacy and only 3% of the respondents did not use Internet. The implication of such findings is, nearly all respondents indicated Internet usage in various settings, suggesting familiarity with this medium and thus the potential openness to engaging in. We also found that most of the respondents never received information about from the bank and the item loading for this particular construct scored the lowest loading (0.519) among other items (see Table 4).
10 S.A. Al-Somali et al. / Technovation 29 (2009) Table 6 Assessment of the structural model No. Hypothesis path R 2 Path coefficient (b) t-value p-value Supported? H1 QI-PEOU *** Yes H2 AW-PU *** Yes H3 TR-ATT *** Yes H4 SI-PU *** Yes H5 RC-ATT *** Yes H6 SE-PEOU *** Yes H7 Age-ATT No H8 Gender-ATT No H9 Education-ATT ** 0.02** Yes H10 Income-ATT No H11 PEOU-PU *** Yes H12 PU-ATT *** Yes H13 PEOU-ATT *** Yes H14 PU-AI *** Yes H15 ATT-AI *** Yes Note: ***Significance at po0.001, **Significance at po0.05. The implication is that low awareness of is a critical factor in causing customers not to adopt or use. Saudi commercial banks need to encourage customers by using various types of advertising media such as leaflets and brochures, SMS messages through mobile phones and . This will result in the widespread promotion of the services to a wider audience and educate potential customers about the benefits of as the service is quite new to many customers. Generally, the increased availability of broadband connection throughout the country would lead to greater adoption of, as the current lack of infrastructure plays an important part in limiting adoption rates by Saudi customers. Overall, widespread usage of in Saudi Arabia is an unrealised but promising practice, especially if banks can promote the benefits and security features of in the context of increased broadband provision. 7. Concluding remarks The aim of our research was to identify the factors that encourage customers to adopt in Saudi Arabia which can be useful for e-commerce practitioners in general and e-banking practitioners in particular. This study represents a contribution towards validating previous TAM results from different contexts and shows the applicability of a uniquely extended TAM in predicting the factors that influence the Saudi commercial banks customers to accept. This is consistent with King and He (2006) stating that TAM is a powerful, highly reliable, valid and robust predictive model that may be used in a variety of contexts. The main strengths of this study are its derivation of its factors from previous conceptual and empirical research. The applied measures used in this study were developed through an extensive of the literature reviews. In addition, the research variables, which have been used in many previous technology and adoption studies, were found to have adequate reliability and validity. Future studies could further extend the TAM model to include other variables such as customer loyalty to Internet banking, cost, perceived value and perceived risk. It would also be interesting to focus upon the factors affecting business customers rather than consumers. This study was conducted in the city of Jeddah, the most cosmopolitan city of the western region in Saudi Arabia. Information about adoption and acceptance in other parts of the country, especially in rural areas may vary. Future comparative research could target these areas to gain comparative national results. The study could even be extended to include other countries operating in similar conditions to see if comparable results are achieved. Acknowledgements The authors wish to acknowledge Saudi Arabian Ministry of Higher Education for financially supporting this research and Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau in UK and Dar Al-Hekma College for their assistance and support. Moreover, the authors wish to thank Jonathan Linton (Editor-in-Chief) and two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments on earlier version of this paper. References Agarwal, R., Karahanna, E., Time flies when you re having fun: cognitive absorption and beliefs about information technology usage. MIS Quarterly 24 (4), Aladwani, A.M., Online banking: a field study of drivers, development challenges, and expectations. International Journal of Information Management 21 (3), Alagheband, P., Adoption of electronic banking services by Iranian customers. Master Thesis, University of Technology, Sweden, Luleå.
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