Of course, there is the old adage that if it is that easy, then why doesn’t everyone do it? And therein lies the problem – with new businesses launching every day, it is almost certain that if you’ve had a great idea, half a dozen or more other people will have had a similar one, and you will be in a crowded competitive marketplace from the start.
One industry that is seeing just that is the online gambling sector. You only need to switch on the television to see how many players there are in the market – online casinos are investing heavily in TV advertising to win customers and are battling to outdo each other with the bonus spins, introductory offers and so on.
Yet this sector is potentially more attractive than others, despite the high competition, due to the rapid growth it is seeing. It really does appear that there is plenty of room for everyone, and with the competition meaning prices are kept low, it is good news for customers, too.
Growth and eSports
Members of the older generations hark back to the times when the UK was the world leader in various aspects of industry. Well, in this new sector, it is right back at the top. A combination of the right regulatory environment blended with the British love of a good old fashioned wager mean that the UK is recognised as the hub of the $44 billion global industry that is online gambling.
And the best news is that this growth is continuing. Online casinos were quick to leverage the link between traditional casino games such as slots and roulette and sports betting on horse racing, football and so on. This has already seen significant cross selling success, but now the industry is launching its next major surge – eSports.
For anyone who has never heard the phrase, eSports is essentially competitive computer gaming. The concept itself is not a new one – Atari organised the World Space Invaders Tournament as far back as the early 80s – but it has grown enormously in popularity over recent years.
Serial investors have seen the opportunity and been quick to get onboard, as have big name stars such as NFL legend Joe Montana, who is believed to have ploughed millions of his own money into eSports team Cloud 9. Hot on their heels come the TV deals, leading to even higher public awareness, and before you know it, a whole new sector is booming.
And now, the online sports betting sites are seeing the potential, too. The fit is an ideal one, mixing sport, gaming and gambling, and it slots ideally into the online casino portfolio.
The games themselves come in many types, but the most popular by far is Counter Strike: Global Offensive (CSGO), a multiplayer shooter game that was first released in 2012. The game has captured the imagination of players, spectators and gamblers, and is the first to have been extensively covered by the online betting sites. One of the lead eSports sponsors, Gamerbetz compares CSGO betting sites, and there are already eight online casinos taking bets on the game.
Joining the fray
The eSports market is set to grow exponentially over the coming years. With the excitement surrounding CSGO, it does not take much to envisage the potential as other games and genres become popular at a competitive level. There is also the aspect of virtual reality – after several false starts, the technology is finally here, and the sector will explode over the coming year.
Where there is competition, there are inevitably people willing to lay down a few pounds in a friendly wager, so if you have always liked the idea of becoming a bookmaker, there has never been a better time to launch an online casino.
Like any business, it is important to understand your target market before you do anything else. There is plenty of competition out there, so what can you do to meet the needs of your chosen demographic better than the rest?
This might involve thinking a little outside the box. For example, Sheila’s Wheels penetrated the ultra-competitive car insurance market by targeting women drivers. Given that more than half of all gamers are women, it is surprising that nobody has done the same in the online casino industry yet.
There are also geographical markets that are ripe for the taking. The USA and Russia are full of potential clients who are frustrated by domestic banking constraints. Some overseas casinos have managed to circumvent this by offering the anonymity of Bitcoin payments.
In a market with so many moving pieces, there is money to be made for those with a strategic outlook.