Research on corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities and consumer perception of CSR activities is increasing over the recent past. The purpose of this paper is to gain an understanding of the consumer perceptions of CSR activities of banks in India. It provides insights on whether consumers want their banks to take up CSR initiatives and would these perceptions influence their attitude towards the bank.
Self-report questionnaires were personally administered by the researchers and their team. Respondents’ responses were based on their awareness of their bank’s involvement in CSR initiatives. The study uses convenience sampling, given the resource limitations. The research was conducted in the city of Nashik, India during June–October 2015.
The results of the study show that consumer perception towards the CSR activities of the bank influenced their attitude and satisfaction. Though consumers expressed a need for their bank’s taking up CSR initiatives, this need did not influence their attitude towards the bank, contradicting studies in the past. Consumer perception of the bank’s involvement in the CSR activities was moderate, indicating that banks need to increase their communication about the CSR initiatives undertaken by them.
Unique contribution of current research is that the CSR reputation and CSR concern of consumers in the Indian context have been investigated for their influence on consumer attitude. Unlike previous studies, CSR concern does not influence consumer attitude or satisfaction. Findings provide important insights for practitioners and academicians focussing on the banking sector in India.
Little research is reported on consumer perception of CSR in banking sector. Current research tries to fill this gap.