How has the casino industry changed since the arrival of online casinos?
The first online casinos were launched at the end of the 1990s. Internet gambling took the world by storm, only held back by technological limitations. The role of the online casino has mirrored how the internet grew.
Gambling was previously the exclusive preserve of the land-based casino, but things have changed over the last generation. Let’s take an exciting look into the evolution of the casino industry.
Growing player base
Within the US, owning a land-based venue was the only way to attract players. Due to prevailing legislation, casinos across the country were limited to Atlantic City, Las Vegas and Native American reserves. Many states outright banned gambling, so the only way to play was to go on a road trip.
The sheer number of casinos was limited by the amount of money available. Investing in a casino venture required millions upon millions of dollars.
The rise of the online casino changed that, with operators no longer needing a land-based venue at all to attract new players. Major brands could also appeal to players regardless of location, with players from across the world gathering under the same umbrella.
It allowed people who would otherwise be unable to travel to a casino to play for the first time.
The nature of bonuses
Bonuses and promotions have always been an essential tool for casino brands to attract and retain players.
Traditional casino bonuses were restricted to compensation in the form of free hotel rooms, drinks, meals and tickets to shows. They were experience-based bonuses that had no bearing on the games being played.
Online casinos changed how bonuses worked, with promotions focusing on free spins, no deposit bonuses and more. Players now actively search for the best online casino bonuses to increase their profits and wring more money out of the casino industry.
Experience versus profit
Online casinos have altered the way operators view the land-based experience versus the online experience.
Recognizing the threat posed by other online casino brands, operators have switched their land-based venues to concentrate more on the overall experience rather than the potential of nailing a massive jackpot.
It has led to a complete revamp in land-based customer retention programs, and the comps offered to visiting players.
Gambling on the go
Online casinos began as browser-based experiences, but mobile technology has meant that more players than ever are enjoying their favorite casino games on their smartphones and tablets.
Approximately 74% of casino goers also use apps to gamble with. It should come as no surprise that these apps have become more advanced over the years, leveraging better graphics, audio and features.
Most games don’t require any significant time investment. Even if you only have a few minutes to spare during a commercial break, you can throw a few dice or enjoy some spins on the latest slots games.
The old stereotypes of casinos were confined to dark, smoke-filled card rooms or shady individuals using double VPN encryption to circumvent gambling laws. Gambling was viewed in a negative light by millions across the nation, which is why laws regarding casinos have remained so strict.
Perceptions are changing, and both online sports betting apps and online casinos have experienced restrictions easing across many states.
While perceptions are changing, so are the demographics, with younger generations and women partaking in online gambling more than at any other point in time.
Home is where the cards are
Visiting a physical casino requires time and effort, especially if you live in a state where gambling has been illegal for decades. The average person either didn’t have the time or the money to visit an brick-and-mortar casino.
It’s a well-known fact that most players prefer to play from home, where they don’t have to dress up or pay for gas and meals.
Innovations such as live dealer games and the coming of augmented reality games are bringing the live casino experience into millions of homes. Such advancements have only been possible due to the advent of the online casino.
When online casinos initially came to prominence, there were genuine worries from traditional casino operators that they would spell the end of the land-based casino. The reality has been far different.
Land-based casinos occupy an entirely new role within the world of gambling. Both have worked in harmony to lock players in for longer and encourage more people to give classic casino games a try.
Do you prefer to gamble online or at a land-based casino?