Mobile sports bettors have high incomes
Posted on: Aug 31, 2022 at 5:01 am.
Last updated on: August 30, 2022, 06:17.
More than half of mobile sports bettors in the US make $100,000 or more annually. But TransUnion suggests that online sportsbooks know their customers better.
Chicago-based TransUnion, one of the “Big Three” credit agencies, decided to enter the US gaming industry last year after 12 years of monitoring gambling in the UK and Europe. TransUnion has since shared insights into the casino and online gambling industry, with its latest research focusing on Internet sports betting participation.
TransUnion found that most sports bettors who gamble online in the US have high salaries, but inflation has eroded the purchasing power of those earnings. Soaring costs for everything from milk to electricity have led some mobile sportsbooks to express concerns about being able to pay their monthly bills in the near future.
While 54% of mobile sportsbooks are earning a six-figure salary, 79% told pollsters they are worried about their ability to pay off their current bills, loans and other debts in full in the coming months. That’s far more than the 52% of the general population who are worried about their liabilities, TransUnion said.
Customer insights required
The TransUnion study, conducted by external research firm Dynata, concluded that sports betting platforms should know more about their online customers’ finances.
In the current economic climate, it is important for operators to better understand their players and promote responsible and sustainable gaming.” Said Declan Raines, Head of US Gaming at TransUnion Casino.org in an interview.
Raines added that government regulators might be wise to require licensed online sportsbooks to conduct affordability ratings for players – something that is common in the UK and Europe. Affordability checks, which give operators a deeper understanding of a player’s personal finances and financial well-being, could allow online sportsbooks to draw more informed conclusions to determine how much a customer can afford to bet.
Raines also believes that operators need to better educate their customers about available responsible gaming resources and programs. The belief is that this would better ensure their sports betting activity remains fun and a form of entertainment. Along with affordability ratings, the TransUnion Gaming executive believes this would better protect consumers and limit the potential societal harms of gambling as the industry continues its reach online.
TransUnion naturally pared the mobile sports study down to what it does best – analyzing the data and information related to credit. And for mobile sports betting operators worried about paying their bills, the rating house stressed the importance of looking after one’s creditworthiness.
“Payment history and credit utilization rate, a measure of how much available credit someone is using compared to their total credit limit, are two of the most important credit scoring factors,” said Margaret Poe, director of consumer credit education at TransUnion. “Long payments and accumulated balances can have a serious, negative impact on a consumer’s creditworthiness.”
According to Raines, the financial resilience of mobile sports bettors is already being tested amid record inflation. And while the majority of bettors are likely to continue to gamble responsibly, more oversight would prove valuable.
“At first glance, most consumers who participate in mobile sports betting can probably afford it. At the same time, our results highlight the importance, particularly in times of economic uncertainty, that operators use comprehensive data to identify both resilient and distressed consumers.
“This can help operators protect players and provide a safer experience for consumers participating in regulated betting,” concluded Raines.
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