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Archive for March, 2012

All About Online Bingo: Part 2

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

In the first part of this article we looked at the rise of online bingo, some broad statistics that have been gathered about the type of people who play the game and why it’s so popular, and also touched briefly on the success of free online bingo offers from companies like Costa Bingo which have helped to bring in millions of new customers every year.

But what else do we know about the average online bingo player? And what can it lead us to assume about the market in general and where it’s heading?

First of all, around 8% of the European population plays bingo, kids in Germany use it to learn their mathematical tables and the British armed forces are allowed to play it (which is relevant because it’s the only ‘gambling’ game that they are allowed to play). That leaves a lot of scope for an increase in players, especially as internet access spreads and the demographic widens of bingo players.

Can we assume, then, that one or two bingo sites will end up monopolising the market? Early indications suggest not with 67% of online bingo players paying at more than one bingo site. Although, as discussed in the first half, money is not the motivation for most bingo players, many are drawn by deposit bonuses and special games which encourages people to open more than 1 account. So, for the moment, unless there is a period of consolidation in the market, we can expect the wide range of choice to remain – although perhaps fewer new sites will appear.

We can also assume that there will a greater separation between the land-based and the online version of the game. At present only 25% of online bingo players do go to land based bingo clubs and as technology improves and the online version becomes even more social than it already is, we can assume that this figure will diminish.

Another, and much more trivial, statistic that is likely to diminish in the coming years is the random fact that 68% of online bingo players smoke compared to 28% (which represents the UK average). How, or why, this information was gathered is hard to say, but it seems likely that the number will fall as a great spectrum of the UK take up the game.

Last of all, what predictions can we give for bingo in general, will it continue it’s rapid growth in popularity? We think that it will, there is a lot of scope for the game to develop further, and its growing youth appeal is a major supporting factor. The industry is also very well set up, with it’s only support networks in the shape of GamCare and a lot of money being spent on advertising. All in all, the future is bright for online bingo.

 

Image: Ian Robertson

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All About Online Bingo: Part 1

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

The online bingo industry has been one of the most spectacular, and yet unexpected, successes of the internet era. Just twenty years ago the game was confined to schools and church halls, and a number of the bingo halls around the country were being closed down. Now it’s one of the most popular games in the world, almost entirely fuelled by the online game.

Identifying root causes for this success is difficult, although most marketing experts agree that the industry has been remarkably good at advertising itself through the likes of special bingo bonuses that are common with sites like Costa Bingo. These attract players because they give the opportunity to win money without actually risking any of their own cash.

So what else do we know about the online bingo community? Despite the success of bingo bonuses and advertisements they’re noticeably not driven by money with winning being cited as only the 5th most important reason for them playing the game. This has led some observers to suggest that online bingo players are originally drawn in by curiosity and the idea of winning money but that after a while other factors become more important in their playing.

The biggest of these is, undeniably, the social side of the game. Chatrooms make up a vibrant and important part of each bingo website, and the wider online community works hard to promote the game, and to keep it safe by running watchdog schemes that highlight rogue sites.

Research suggests that many online bingo players come from similar demographics, 85% are female, 30% are under thirty (although most are between 40 and 50), the vast majority have young children and come from households with similar annual income. That said, those statistics could be said to be more like a snapshot of Britain in general rather than any particular industry.

Another factor given for the popularity of the game is that it’s accessible to everyone. Although some people argue that there is a strategy behind the game, most people agree that anyone can play, and, as 96% of online bingo players have won at some point, anyone can win. The average game also takes only 4 to 5 minutes, so it’s not time consuming and you can dip in and out at will.

Whatever the reasons, bingo is growing rapidly and the popularity doesn’t look set to disappear any time soon, in the second half of this article we’ll look at some of the more unusual facts about online bingo and try and predict what’s going to happen in the next few years.

 

Image:martathegoodone

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