In a technical sense, setting up and launching an online casino isn’t particularly difficult. The basic templates are there for the taking, the games themselves are sourced from external developers and it’s not exactly expensive to secure yourself a decent hosting package. Nevertheless, setting up and launching a successful online casino is an altogether more challenging affair.
This is precisely why of the dozens of new online casinos that emerge every month, only a few have what it takes to go the distance. Most of the technical aspects of building and operating an online casino are becoming simpler and more accessible all the time. But it’s what you deliver and focus on beyond the basics that will determine if and to what extent you succeed.
In terms of whether it’s worth giving it a go, the figures alone suggest the answer is an obvious one. In the European Union alone, annual online gambling revenues come in somewhere around the €13 billion. That’s quite a lot of cash – particularly when considering that the industry is technically open and accessible.
It’s simply a case of acknowledging the fact that getting set up and building your online success story might not prove as easy as expected.
Speak to those who’ve made their fortunes (or at least a decent living) by setting up online casinos and they’ll probably quote thousands of weird and wonderful tips and tricks for success. All of which have the potential to prove helpful, but can also confuse things significantly.
However, ask the same experts to narrow down their suggestions to a few basic essentialities and it’s likely they’ll provide you with pretty similar responses. The following examples representing the most important keys to success, for anyone looking to make a name for themselves in online casino gaming:
Preparation is everything
Before even thinking about getting your casino off the ground, you need to come up with a comprehensive and meticulously detailed business plan. It’s not simply a case of starting things off and summarily making up the rest as you go along. You need to know everything there is to know about the online casino industry, along with the ins and outs of running an online business, how to make accurate financial projections and so on. From official licensing rules to regulations to taxation, there’s a lot to take into account in the early stages. Unless you can honestly say you understand the industry inside out, you may not be ready to take the next step.
Choose your markets carefully
You also need to think extremely carefully about which markets you intend to target with the online casino. On the surface, you’d naturally assume that the most lucrative markets in the world – the UK, EU, USA etc. – represent the most obvious choices. In reality, you may find that competition within your specific niche is far too intensive for you to stand even the slightest chance of succeeding. If you plan on bringing something completely new to the table, you could certainly try your luck in a competitive market. By contrast, set up a casino that simply serves up the same as every other casino on the market and you’re unlikely to gain traction.
Plan your marketing strategy
Make no mistake about it – nobody will even know your casino exists, unless you get serious with marketing. You only need to spend a few minutes online these days to see just how ferocious competition is worldwide when it comes to online casino marketing. Players have the choice of literally thousands of different online casinos, all primarily offering the same gaming experiences. As such, it’s the way and extent to which you market your casino that will determine if your audience finds you and takes you seriously. Marketing should form one of the core elements of your business plan from day one.
Determine your USP
Simply set up and launch an identical copy of the kinds of casinos already up and running and you’re in for a rough ride. The key to success with any online business being to first establish your unique selling proposition. What is it about your casino that makes it different from all others on the market? Why would the average gamer (within your target audience) choose you over everyone else? What can you offer that nobody else can? Do you even have a unique point of appeal? Your USP should form the basis for everything your casino and your marketing strategy are built upon.
Focus on the user experience
These days, the average online casino gamer isn’t particularly impressed by OTT visuals and unnecessary garnishes. Instead, they’re all about the overall user experience. Streamlined, reliable and comprehensively user-friendly online casinos that don’t waste their time. You’ll need to invest as heavily as necessary in the creation of an outstanding user experience, regardless of how heavy said investment may be.
Focus on retention
You’re far more likely to succeed by working hard to retain a relatively modest audience, than if you were to continually attempt to attract bigger audiences of new customers. It’s the classic case of retention being easier and costing less than chasing new leads. So once again, you need to do whatever it takes to delight those who join your casino and ensure they’ve no reason to go anywhere else. Quality gaming, outstanding value for money, reliable customer service and so on – all the kinds of things that contribute to better retention rates.
Keep things fresh
Last but not least, variety really is the spice of life when it comes to online gaming. While quality will always matter more than quantity, you still need to provide your customers with plenty to keep them busy. Online casino technology is accelerating at its fastest ever pace, resulting in the launch of truly extraordinary games and general casino experiences practically by the day. It’s your job to keep things fresh and ensure your casino remains consistently up to date, if you’re to stand any chance of retaining your customers’ attention.
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