For business enterprises, Africa is a place of promise. And this includes the continent’s booming online betting sector. Yet, for operators wanting to enter successfully into this promising economy, there are also several challenges to overcome.
Leading sports betting platform provider Uplatform recently concluded an analysis of what it means to be successful in online betting operations in Africa. They also focused on the main challenges that African-facing sports betting operators can expect to navigate.
Since many African bettors continue to favour retail betting over online betting, they must be motivated to make the transition. However, this can be a challenge for operators.
Perhaps the most challenging element of all within the context of the African betting market is that of a slow roll-out of access to the internet. Today, only 33 percent of all Africans make use of the internet, and this number varies enormously from country to country. This is because of a combination of tradition and a lack of local connectivity infrastructure.
In Kenya, for example, 85.5 percent of people have access to the internet, while in regions like Eritrea, South Sudan, and Western Sahara, less than 10 percent have this privilege.
This is why it’s crucial that betting operators in Africa must adopt a two-pronged approach. Such an approach means establishing a strong presence in the retail sector as well as online. Not only does this type of approach help operators to survive during a time such as the global health crisis, but it also goes a long way towards helping customers make the switch from land-based betting to the world of online wagering.
Also crucial to be mindful of is that even today, less than 10 percent of African households have access to their own computer. For most Africans, mobile devices are the preferred method of gaining access to the internet. Online offerings should therefore be 100% mobile-friendly.
These challenges don’t mean bettors are doomed to remain stuck in a traditional betting environment. According to Uplatform, almost every land-based bettor can be helped to make the transition to online betting.
If operators are to be successful at helping their customers to make this conversion, however, they need to first understand the reasons behind a preference for traditional offerings vs. online betting.
Reasons include slow internet, socialization, and even a general mistrust of online operators within the betting space.
Adopting a two-pronged strategy that includes both traditional retail as well as online offerings can help the operator to grow its online customer base while still holding on to its traditional betting market.
Payment solutions can mean make-or-break for the online betting operator hoping to make it big in Africa.
Since fewer than 5% of Africans own a credit card, a more conservative approach must be followed in terms of payment solutions. These solutions must include methods typically utilized by Africans when making payments online – including bank transfers, e-vouchers, and mobile payments.
Operators who want to do business in Africa’s growing online sector must come prepared.
Since most online bettors in Africa are between the ages of 18 and 29 and are influenced by innovation, technology, and convenience in terms of accessibility, all these factors must be kept in mind.
The key to success in Africa is for operators to create their offerings in such a way that they appeal to a younger and more progressive section of the market.