Online gambling has thrived over the last few years. This sector has grown rapidly in Europe, particularly in Italy and more specifically in the United Kingdom, its first European market.
Let’s find out the specificities of this sector and how, as an online operator, you can support online players to offer them a seamless user experience and premium customer support.
A continuous growth
In Great Britain, online gambling knows no recession. According to the Gambling Commission, in 2016, online gambling accounted for 33% of all gambling in the country (compared to only 17% in Europe as a whole) which means it was the largest gambling sector in Great Britain with a 1Gross Gambling Yield of £4.5billion generated in 2016!
There are two reasons to such success: the measures implemented against irregular gambling and the increase in the number of online players.
Measures against irregular gambling
The Gambling Commission, established under the Gambling Act 2005, has committed itself to license and regulate the people and businesses that provide gambling in Great Britain including the National Lottery. It provides licensing procedures for websites offering online gambling which are located in the United Kingdom.
Online gambling is strictly regulated: companies paid for licensing and taxes get, in exchange, permission to operate within the UK borders. Websites from offshore companies need to be white-listed by gaining licensure through a gaming commission considered to be legitimate by the United-Kingdom.
Being licensed may seem like a long hassle when, in fact, it offers online players many advantages over illegal players. In case of dispute with a website of online gambling, the latter can be hold accountable. By playing on websites that do not abide by the UK online gambling laws, players are facing major risks such as not being able to have any recourse against the illegal site that don’t pay them for example.
Earlier this year, the Gambling Commission reinforced its regulations to enhance consumer protection in the online gaming sector. New rules will bind remote operators to ensure that:
“Innovation and technological advancement continues to drive growth in the £4.5 billion a year online gambling market.
We are seeing operators developing new gambling products and technologies every day – something that it is vital to the further advancement of the sector.
But as the industry transforms, operators are reminded that we too will continue to adapt our regulation to raise standards across all gambling sectors and enhance the protections available for consumers.”
Sharon McNair, program director at the Gambling Commission
An increase in online gambling
According to the Gambling Commission (UKGC), between October 2015 and September 2016, online gambling made up 32% of the overall gambling market.
This growth can be explained by an increase in the number of online players but there’s more to it! It also comes from an extended offer on the market. In recent years, new operators have arrived on the market, competing with “historical” operators which increased the competitive nature of the market. This means that players can choose between many websites that comply with the Gambling Commission’s laws.
The rise of mobile gambling
Using a mobile device has become a second nature for most people. Online gambling is no stranger to this trend. Indeed, betting on your smartphone is much easier than placing a bet on your desktop after coming home. As players are also more connected on their mobile devices, it also means they spend more time playing online which can generally mean that they also bet more online. According to Optimove, mobile players turn into paying customers almost twice as fast as desktop players.
The rise of mobile gambling is an opportunity as much as a challenge: mobile platforms are a chance for operators to offer a unique betting experience. But it is also a challenge as operators need to keep up with players’ demands for a customised experience with real-time excitement.
A sector that attracts different types of people
Users of online gambling websites have different profiles. Some users are used to playing online and perfectly know how to place their bet on the next football match or bet on an online casino. Others, however, are your main target: they would like to bet or play, but they don’t know exactly how to do so.
Sometimes, visitors experience difficulties online because of the structure of the website: websites are often too saturated with elements that are not immediately understandable. Also, in order to be as transparents as possible for visitors, websites share a wide variety of information which can be misunderstood, creating a feeling of uncertainty: this results in many players leaving the website.
Brands have to reassure their visitors by answering any type of questions that may arise while visitors browse their website. This means brands have to offer real-time support on their website or wherever visitors want to contact them (messaging apps, social media, etc.).
Which type of support should you offer to online players?
First, in order to help visitors in difficulty, brands need to interact with them before they leave their website. To do so, you need to know when visitors have questions and offer them the opportunity to contact someone who can help them.
But which tools could help brands provide qualitative support? First, you need to identify the touch points used by your visitors and the touch points through which you could offer them real-time assistance. In fact, given the wide variety of touch points available online, visitors won’t hesitate to switch from one website to the other unless they receive a quick answer to their questions.
And because visitors want immediate answers, brands could meet their expectations by using messaging applications. What about WhatsApp? This messaging app has entered its users’ daily life. Taking advantage of this touch point means getting closer to its users, allowing them to communicate in a simple and pleasant way, as if they were writing to a friend or a family member. iAdvize allows you to communicate through this messaging app directly from its platform, centralising all conversations on one single platform.
ibbü experts, the precious allies of online players
Brands also have another alternative: relying on ibbü experts. These experts are savvy enthusiasts who have experience and knowledge about a specific subject and they get paid to give authentic advice to online visitors.
– Watch the ibbü video –
For example, in the online gambling industry, an ibbü expert might be an active player who knows all the details of a website on which he or she plays and makes bets. What is ibbü’s added value? It seizes all your contact opportunities by giving your visitors valuable and authentic tips at any time. In fact, when people play in the evening or at weekends, they cannot receive real time support as customer service teams are not available. But ibbü is the key to this problem. In addition to enhancing your brand image and offering premium customer service, ibbü provides advice to your online visitors when your customer service team are not available (in the evening, at weekends or when they are overwhelmed by peak traffic) as ibbü experts log in to the ibbü platform whenever they want.
Find out how we select the best experts => Read our must-read guide
Offering premium support to your online visitors show that your brand is available at any time when visitors need its help.
1Gross gambling yield (GGY) – the amount retained by operators after the payment of winnings but before the deduction of the costs of the operation.