The online gambling industry is huge and getting bigger. With the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, more people signed up for online gambling than ever before. There were record numbers of Google searches in the U.K. alone for online casinos. This huge and growing market of players brings more casinos and more competition.
Online casinos cost a lot of money to create. A conservative estimate would be between $1 to $2 million. After that initial investment comes marketing and advertising to drive traffic to the site. A new online casino can easily start with a monthly budget of $50,000 upwards and bigger companies will spend even more to compete with their rivals. With this much money involved, there is a clear need to make sure customers come to the casino.
To entice new players, online casinos use a variety of techniques such as free bets and sign-up bonuses, but they also use modern technology to stay ahead of the competition. SEO plays a big part in keeping a casino at the top of Google rankings and even the hosting they use affects who plays on their sites.
The Popularity of Online Casinos
Online casinos and other forms of online gambling have increased their revenue every year. Although there are no figures for 2020, all expectations are that it is likely to be a record year. With bookmakers, bingo halls and casinos closed during the various lockdowns around the world, the online industry suddenly saw an influx of players. Some of these were already registered, some were gamblers that couldn’t visit a land-based establishment and others were simply curious and bored people stuck at home.
Optimization for All Devices
One reason that online casinos and other gambling sites are so popular is that they are easily accessible. Companies want as many customers as possible regardless of which business they are in. In the casino industry, they want you to be able to access their site with no problem, so they make sure everything is optimized for smartphones upwards.
Use of Geolocation and IP Tracking
Online casinos can use your devices to build up a profile of you. Put simply, your smartphone contains GPS and the apps and games on your device can record your location and movements. Once that has been matched against the searches you make on the internet and sites you visit, a digital marketing agency can target you with specific adverts.
For example, the agency knows you live in Canada from your GPS. It also knows you have been searching for casinos online. It can then target your social feeds and other websites with adverts specifically for online casinos accepting Canadian players. This technology can also be used to send offers to specific regions and to avoid advertising in countries that are barred from playing. It is also used simply to stop players from countries where gambling is banned from even accessing the website in the first place.
Online casinos will likely employ specialist agencies who will deliver an SEO strategy customized for the online casino they are working for. There are many steps to providing the perfect SEO strategy, but the basics include optimizing keywords and phrases, updating content to make sure it is relevant and optimizing images and videos on the site.
Keywords and Key Phrases
Keywords need to be included in the content of your site in a natural way so that Google recognizes the relevance of your content against searches users are making online. These keywords will need researching to find the best phrases to use, and over time, they will need to be updated and tweaked.
Content is king, and a casino site will need to regularly update articles on their site to keep the content fresh. When new content is published, Google will take another look at it – quality content can help Google rankings on searches.
Relevant articles for a casino site would be about poker tournaments, large wins and new developments in the gaming world. They might do an article on virtual casinos or a new app to download.
Optimizing the Website
The SEO agency will look at optimizing everything on your site. Every page will need to be looked at to see if the length of the articles are correct. Longer articles work better. Photos, graphics and videos will need to have both the physical dimensions and their file sizes set correctly. File types are also important. Big files will make sites load slowly and can drive visitors away. If a site has a high bounce rate, it will fall down the rankings.
An online casino will need fast, secure, dedicated servers and the tech staff to maintain them. One thing a casino cannot do is lose the trust of their players. If anyone had a slight suspicion an online casino wasn’t 100 percent legitimate, they would leave. This means the bandwidth must be very high so there are no nasty lags while a card is about to be turned or a roulette wheel stops spinning.
They also have to be secure so there are no concerns about payment methods used and they will need to have a high level of storage, as online casinos carry an extremely large amount of games, especially slot machines. Be sure to learn more about hosting so you’re able to make the right decision.
Another type of hosting online casinos use is offshore servers. This simply means that the company gains a license in an overseas location and places their servers there. This can be for a few reasons: It can avoid large tax bills in the home country of the company, or it could be because licenses are less expensive and easier to gain offshore. The most likely reason, though, is so that the casino can accept players from areas where online gambling is banned.
Other tech being employed by casinos includes virtual reality with 3D-rendered gaming. Live dealer casinos are common now, where a real dealer organizes the game on the casino website. All manner of payment methods are now employed including bitcoin.
Online casinos will continue to use SEO combined with other technology to gain more players and continue to grow. While the traditional market has suffered in 2020, the online industry appears to be thriving through 2020 and beyond.