Well, if you weren’t sure before, the experts have confirmed it: the online gambling industry is getting bigger every year.
Web trackers and analysts, Jupiter Media Metrix, has just announced that it will now start monitoring online gambling sites and ad campaigns as a unique category after recording a huge jump in the number of impressions (clicks) on online casino ads during a one-year period.
That number rose from 900 million impressions in December 2000 to more than 2.5 billion by December 2001 – an increase of 170 percent.
Online gambling ads are now the fifth largest ad category that Jupiter tracks, up from 11th place last year. By comparison, the largest online ad sector (retail goods and consumer ads) only grew by 40 percent during the same period.
According to Jupiter, online casino ads are now competing directly with mainstream companies. What’s more, casinos are actually serving the largest number of unique ads. There were 2,448 unique casino ads on the Net in December, compared to 2,043 for the next highest category – Books, Movies, and Music.
Aggressive marketing by Situs Judi Slot Online Terpercaya casino companies has also helped to expose online gambling sites to the general public. 39 percent of casino ads are found on larger general-interest portals, rather than the niche sites that dominated the casino ad market a year ago.
Not surprisingly, Casino-on-Net held the lion’s share of the online ad market with 45% of the impressions and an 11th place ranking overall (it maintained its number 1 ranking from the year before). Fortune Lounge Casinos came second with 9.2% of the impressions and a 67th place standing overall.
Land-based casinos, on the other hand, barely register on the Internet ad market and make up less than .01 percent of the number of online casino ads.
So what do all of these numbers mean? They mean more traffic to gambling sites, the potential for more revenue, and that the industry as a whole is growing.
More ads, both at general-interest portals and elsewhere on the Net, bring more people to casino sites. With an increase in visitors comes an increased possibility that a percentage of this group will like what they find.
More visitors also mean the opportunity for the casinos to make more money. For example, if 10 people spend $100 each at an online casino ($1000 in revenue), 10 times the number of people coming to the site theoretically means the chance for 10 times the revenue ($10,000, using this example).
Finally, more impressions on casino ads mean that more people are interested in seeing what online gambling is all about. Whether they actually spend money or not at the casino is another matter, however.
And all that extra traffic relates directly to an issue casino operators are dealing with – stickiness. Stickiness is the ability to retain customers on the site. All the traffic in the world doesn’t mean much if people aren’t staying at the site and spending money, as camera makers X10 can attest to.
The ever-present and highly annoying X10 pop-under ad campaign blanketed the Net for much of 2001. 34.2 million people visited X10’s site in June 2001 after clicking on the ads, but only 1.2 million spent at least three minutes on the site. And that didn’t translate into a lot of revenue for the company.
Online casino operators seem to be having more success in this area, if early numbers are any indication. According to Jupiter, 13.6 million people visited a select group of online casinos last December. Not all of them placed a real-money bet, but visitors spent more than 20 minutes at these sites during the month. The key for casinos is to convert those visitors into real-money players.
One other reason for the jump in the number of casino ads over the past year is the fact that the cost of advertising online has gone down. Online casinos are paying less for their ads, which means they can get more ads out there for less money than ever before.
Casinos are pushing hard to control the online gambling market, as evidenced by Casino-on-Net’s massive ad campaign, and it looks like the effort to get more people to online casinos is paying off. Legislative issues remain a rather substantial hurdle to overcome, but the numbers don’t lie: online gambling is becoming more popular every year and this rapid growth rate doesn’t look like it will slow down any time soon.