Throughout the years, the online casino industry has been continuously evolving to fit the needs of players throughout the world. Gamification in online casinos has been a priority in recent years by focusing mainly on the player’s experience. This strategy has overshadowed casinos that provide more games, which was something that was a priority a few years back. So, Betivity would like to dig into the concept of gamification and its role in the casino industry. We’ll cover definitions, a bit of history, player mindsets and more.
Gamification is all about creating engagement with the customer, giving a sense of purpose and a sense to what they are doing. When gamification comes into play, there is an experience created that makes the customer part of the plan. There is also a feeling of accomplishment for the client when integrating these strategies, like fulfilling a requirement to complete an objective.
There are online casinos out there that have implemented these techniques. For example, when creating an account, you can select which avatar you would like to represent you while playing their casino games. This gamification gives the player freedom to choose different options and make their own decisions on how to play. There are also options where players can redeem accumulated points to purchase features (clothing accessories, weapons, etc.) for your chosen avatar.
Other casinos provide the player with ”daily missions” to complete, moving from level to level as objectives are completed and rewarding them in the process. The previous example provides the player with a sense of accomplishment. It not only helps them fulfill what is required but also to acquire a prize. All these are examples of how gamification helps engage the player to perform a more prominent role in the online casino.
We also see online casinos getting very creative by providing players the chance to move through different stages throughout their gameplay. For example, there is a casino that starts new players on an island. If the player completes everything required, they will move over to a different island with new objectives. Moving from level to level keeps players intrigued and provides them with new things to work on. This strategy makes casino players loyal to their brand.
In the early days, casinos were simply out to provide customers the services of their games. They were attractive because it was something new that beat out having to go to a land-based casino. Players were happy with the technology and with the simplicity of it all. Online Casinos focused on giving the players entertainment values. They provided the slot or table games and means to deposit and withdrawal their money.
In the later years, live dealer casino games started to appear. It’s a type of gamification since it generated an interaction between two people across a live feed. Players could chat up the dealer and even give them tips. Interactions like these keep players coming back because it makes them feel part of something, so the addition of live dealer casinos was a welcomed one. The added benefits were that players would feel even more like they were at an actual casino.
VIP Programs (Loyalty programs) also came along as a type of early gamification. These categorized casino members into different groups from least important to most. This also gave them certain engagement with the casino since it was based on point accumulation. The more a person plays, the more points they have. What those points meant varied from casino to casino but most of the time players were exposed to certain exclusives, just like any VIP concept. Some brands gave players a chance to redeem points in exchange for merchandise or even free spins. But the fact that they gave players a choice to pick was a method to provide them with freedom and power. I know I would much rather choose my reward from multiple options than be handed one from the casino itself.
Live chat support considered itself a part of this strategy. Perhaps it is in the division of customer service, but its a great engagement tool for players to use. Chat service gives casino members the power to ask for what they want almost immediately. No longer do they have to do the traditional wait of sending an email and gathering up patience for the response. Players now have the tools necessary to ask what they want, whenever they want. It’s a tool to empower the player and keep them happy with great customer service. This feature is actually a great opportunity to show their clients just how good (or bad) their customer support is.
Nowadays, we are seeing the new type of gamification with online casinos. Just like the ones I mentioned in the first segment. More and more casinos are trying to catch up to these ideas. The main reason is that they are noticing the attention that players are giving it.
I am starting to think this is a must for casinos to have. Just like at one point live dealers games was a must. I consider a casino depleted if they don’t have the basics like a loyalty program, live dealer tables, live chat service and other benefits. I wouldn’t even call them benefits anymore; the “additions” are just the necessary parameters to get start. I see more and more casinos implementing avatars and daily missions to their offering. Just wait and see, and we can verify if I am right or not in the future.