The gambling industry has enjoyed massive financial growth in the UK recent times and it is a trend that looks set to continue over the coming years.
According to the Gambling Commission, the total gross gambling yield (GGY) was £13.9 billion for the period October 2016 to September 2017 betting sites accounted for over 35% of that figure.
Read on as we look some of the main reasons behind the continuing boom in the UK gambling industry.
Improved marketing techniques
Developments in technology has allowed gambling operators to revolutionise the way they market themselves.
Traditional advertising platforms such as television and radio are still used to promote their services, but the growth of the internet has allowed betting brands to boost their marketing operations.
Social media is now a major part of how operators promote themselves to their customers, with offers, enhanced odds, tips and expert analysis used to try and attract people to bet with a particular company.
Content marketing is also hugely popular, although the challenge in this area is for operators to “sell” their products to customers without being overly intrusive.
Many people skip through advertising material, but if it’s included in content that is informative they are more likely to be receptive to what they are being offered.
Changing payment habits
Cash payments still have the place in society, but the growth of e-Wallets and cryptocurrencies has helped to fuel an increase in the number of people who gamble.
Debit and credit cards have traditionally been the most popular payment methods online, but the use of payment methods like Neteller, Skrill, PayPal and Bitcoin has shown a sharp increase over the past few years.
E-Wallets offer a safer alternative to card payments, with what is effectively an electronic purse allowing you to make online payments by using an email attached to your account without sharing your personal financial details.
Similarly, cryptocurrencies are an alternative form of virtual money that allow for secure and anonymous transactions to be made on blockchain protocols.
The shift to mobile
The days when use of the internet was limited to a desktop computer in your house are a thing of the past.
Advancements in mobile technology has led to significant changes in consumer habits, with people now able to access their favourite websites whilst on the move.
Numerous gambling operators have now optimised their sites for mobile devices, with many also developing apps for both their sportsbooks and online casinos.
This has made it far easier for people to enjoy gambling and it is a factor that is likely to drive further market growth in the future.
Social gambling is also on the rise, with friends and family able to interact with each through online gambling sites.
Virtuals & eSports sparking further growth
Many operators now offer wagering on virtual sports, with sports such as horse racing, greyhounds and motor racing available in betting shops and online.
Punters are never more than one minute away from being able to place another bet and that ease of availability undoubtedly helps betting turnover.
eSports also seem certain to have an increasing impact on the gambling industry over the next few years.
The worldwide eSports market was valued at over £1bn in 2017 and interest in the genre is expected to rise significantly over the next few years.
More operators are including an eSports offering in their services, giving them access to new groups of customers.
More women gamblers
The Gambling Commission found that men (62%) are more likely to participate in gambling than women (52%), but developments in technology will allow that to change.
Research has shown that women prefer to gamble in private, generally so they feel less intimidated by male players.
The internet has helped to facilitate a growth in the number of women who gamble and other burgeoning technologies such as virtual reality (VR) could also have an impact.
VR takes things to another level
VR technology allows players to replicate visiting a real-life casino by transporting them to their favourite destinations around the world.
Using a suitable headset with a VR-ready computer enables the user to travel into a virtual space where they can play games like blackjack or roulette without leaving the comfort of their own home.
Players can chat with other players or the dealer via VR, allowing them to enjoy gambling in an environment that suits their personal requirements.