Launching an iGaming business is more difficult than ever with increased regulations
iGaming is becoming an industry that’s increasingly difficult to crack – is it still worthwhile launching your own casino in the current landscape? It has received some negative press in terms of responsible gambling, there are lots of regulations in terms of advertising and online gambling laws can also differ depending on where you are based. This can make it hard to enter into the market if you are new to the industry, so we thought we would ask the question – are emerging online casino sites too much work?
Is it Possible to Create an iGaming Company Outside the UK?
There are countries such as Germany where gambling is outlawed for the most part, however they didn’t used to be regulated at all. Owning a gambling site in this country is most definitely illegal however the rules and regulations around playing on one of these sites are a little vague.
It is important to note that although the laws can appear a little ambiguous – there hasn’t been any German that has got themselves into trouble by playing on an online gambling site. The laws are mainly in place for companies based in Germany looking to launch an operator site, making it one of the biggest opportunities in iGaming and one that more and more operators are looking to explore.
If you are a UK based company, there is absolutely no reason why you can’t accept players from countries like Germany. This means you can expand into this market and create more of an opportunity. There are some massive names in the industry that not only accept – but actively look for German traffic.
Of course, Germany isn’t the only country where there is growth in online gaming. If you look at countries such as Spain, Italy, South Africa and others, there is room to grow there too.
What are the Advertising Restrictions?
Due to the nature of the industry – there are restrictions when advertising an online gambling site that you wouldn’t have with any other product. For example, on Facebook – you actually need a license to be able to do any sponsored ads or else this could result in them closing down your page. In order to get this license, you would need to apply directly to Facebook. They are renowned for being difficult to get, in fact there is normally a minimum monthly spend put in place in order to even be considered.
TV ads are another issue. You need to make sure that your gambling ad is not what the Advertising Standards Agency consider to be “attractive to children”. Even though your advert would play after the watershed – you need to make sure that it doesn’t contain any mascots such as dogs, cats, cartoon images etc – or anything else that could be deemed to generate interest from a child.
They also need to explicitly state the terms and conditions associated with any of the offers promoted onsite. The ASA have made an example of some blue chip brands for not being clear enough, and hit them with some heavy fines.
There are other methods of advertising that you can freely use. Search engine optimisaton is a way that most operators out there focus on generating traffic. Making your gambling brand appear number 1 on Google is the best way to get players to your brand. It can also be more cost effective. If you are planning on doing link-building campaigns – it could cost a little more than it would for other projects.
Google paid ad campaigns are also something that you can take advantage of. Although, there are some restrictions that you wouldn’t find in other markets – there’s no reason why this can’t be done. It is worth noting that the cost per click will be fairly high in comparison to other sectors.
Affiliate marketing is where a lot of operators get their players from. This means offering a 3rd party a fee to send players your way. The commission structure varies and could be anything from revenue share (this is where they get a percentage of the amount the player deposits) – to cost per acquisition where you pay a one-off fee for that specific player.
What About Responsible Gambling?
As long brands are promoting responsible gambling effectively on your site this shouldn’t be a barrier. This includes having any relevant links where people can seek help if they happen to have an issue, to actively monitoring player behavior.
It’s also good practice if you are looking to venture into the online casino world that you ensure you have steps in place to ensure you are preventing any issues. A lot of operators have the facility to set limits on the amount of money people can spend on their site on a daily basis, or a specific amount they can withdraw. There are also rules regarding the number of times someone can withdraw from a site in one day. Players can also do things like set up self-imposed limits and exclusions. This means if they think they are playing on your site too frequently or spending too much money, that they ban themselves from your site for a set period of time.
There have also been things such as Responsible Gambling Week that launched in 2017 after there was a growing concern, it’s also essential that you are part of anything like this to show that you would be taking the care of your players seriously.
Is it Worth it or have Regulation Changes put People off?
Although it can seem at first as a bit of a minefield – online gambling can be a very profitable business. If you have a decent budget that you can spend on a quality product and to use on a marketing budget – then some of the challenges shouldn’t phase you. There are different kinds of challenges that will present themselves to you no matter what business you get in to. As long as you do your research, and there is a clear plan in place – then this rapidly growing market could be a good way forward.