How Legalized Sports Betting Is Impacting the Casino Industry


  • Canarian Weekly
  • 20-10-2023
  • Business
  • Photo Credit: Pixabay
How Legalized Sports Betting Is Impacting the Casino Industry

Gambling on the outcomes of sports events has been around for almost as long as sports have. However, sports gambling was prohibited across the United States until 2018, so gamblers had to do so illegally or not at all.

Things changed quickly after the Supreme Court overruled the law prohibiting placing bets on sports in 2018 and opened the floodgates to allow each state to make its own legislation regarding the matter. Since then, 36 states have permitted sports gambling, and the masses are eagerly showing how appreciative they are.

Although more players now spend their time and money betting on sporting events, casinos still offer the same great gambling options they’ve always had. However, with the addition of sports betting, some changes are happening in the casino industry that sports gamblers should take note of.

Casino Sportsbooks.

The most notable change is the adoption of sportsbooks by popular casino brands. Casinos such as MGM and Caesars are known for their extravagant locations. However, not to be left out of the loop, brands like these are also known today for their impressive sportsbooks.

While that is not a brush that can be painted across every casino in the country, most American casinos have launched dedicated sportsbooks as part of their portfolio. These are amongst the most easily accessible and trustworthy available to gamblers.

Because these sportsbooks are owned and operated by existing casinos and are mostly offered inside the casinos that gamblers are already visiting, they attract many players who are already in the mood to try their luck.

New Rivals.

It is not just casino sportsbooks cashing in on the “sporting gold rush,” however. Independent sportsbooks received an influx of wagers in the first 11 months of 2022. These, alongside casino sportsbook bets, accounted for almost $8 billion for the year, with $3.1 billion coming from the NCAA March Madness alone.

These sportsbooks, such as DraftKings, provide intense competition to casinos because they attract more players towards sports betting and away from traditional casino gambling. The fact that many casinos and independent sportsbooks are also available online and via apps makes the competition for brick-and-mortar and online casinos even tougher.

Innovation.

Aside from starting their own sportsbooks, many casinos are actively employing new ideas and innovations to keep players coming back and to encourage them to choose traditional gambling over sports betting.

One of the ways that they are doing this is by offering fantastic welcome bonuses (for online casinos) and extensive rewards (for physical casinos). While these are working to attract players, many sportsbooks are also offering great sign-up and registration offers, dulling the effect that casino bonuses may have.

Not to be deterred, casinos are also working hard to create newer and more exciting games, particularly slots. From VR (virtual reality) slots to games with new graphics, storylines, and jackpots that make any sports bet win pale in comparison, casinos are pulling out all the stops to keep people coming through the door.

And, while there is no doubt that plenty of people are turning to sports betting, an estimated one in five American adults have bet on sports in the last year, these tactics are clearly working.

Proof of this can be easily seen in the revenue generated by traditional casino games, which broke records in 2022 by coming in at over $47 billion, a substantially higher amount than that raked in by sportsbooks.

Advertising.

Another area in which the legalization of sports betting is changing the face of the American casino industry is through advertising. While gambling and casino ads have been legal in the country (at least for licensed casinos), sports betting operators are taking their advertising to new levels.

Adverts for these sportsbooks are commonplace online and cannot be missed or ignored if you watch any sporting event. In fact, they are blatantly and unashamedly advertised everywhere they can during a match, from the big screen to the backs of shirts worn by ground staff.

For the most part, advertising at these sporting events is thanks to a deal the sportsbook has made to sponsor either one of the teams or the stadium (or arena) where the match takes place.

While this type of sponsorship and advertising deal isn’t new because casinos have always been able to sponsor sports, sportsbooks exploit this to make their brand as noticeable as possible. In the process, they are driving out casino advertising in favour of their own.

Industry Growth.

While the legalization of sports betting may have impacted traditional casinos and how players choose to gamble, there is no denying that one thing it has done is spur the industry onto new levels.

In 2022, more than $60 billion was generated via all forms of gambling. This number surpassed all previous records (including the $53 billion hit in 2021) and remains the highest revenue for the gambling industry ever.

Many people have argued that the accessibility and popularity of sports betting will lead to increased gambling problems such as addiction and indebtedness.

However, sportsbooks and casinos alike work tirelessly alongside helplines to aid anybody that feels they need help putting an end to their spending. Therefore, as many people have said, these concerns aren’t likely to materialize.

The possibility that the sports betting bubble may burst in the future is there, as it is for any industry experiencing a boom of rapid growth. But for now, the industry is set on a course that appears to be taking it to new heights.

And whether you’re a player who loves traditional gambling like slots and table games or someone who enjoys the thrill of betting on your favourite team, the reality is that sports betting is an excellent thing for the casino industry.

From the friendly competition between sportsbooks and casinos to the innovation and bonus offers used to incentivize players to gamble in a certain way, everything is working to grow the industry of a pastime loved by many.

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