Betting is a huge industry in Ireland. It’s a favourite past time of a large part of the population—indeed, per capita, the Irish are the third biggest bettors in the world. It’s not surprising, then, that there are so many established betting sites doing business in the country. But what are the common features of the biggest ones?
Today, we’re going to look at what makes the biggest Irish bookmakers—what features they offer, what problems they solve, and how they get to the size they do. There are many contenders for the top spot in the betting industry, so let’s look at what all the biggest ones seem to be doing right.
Let’s get started.
1. Live Betting
As the digital world has gotten faster and faster and everything more readily available, live betting has become a staple of even online betting, today. All of the biggest Irish bookmakers run live bets on the biggest events, whether that is in sports or even more niche events like Eurovision.
Around €10 billion is spent by the Irish on betting in an average year. Betting on live games is one of the most exciting things about betting, and now is more or less ubiquitous to all the largest betting sites.
If a bookmaker wants to take centre stage in Ireland, it needs to offer live betting.
2. Bet Building
Next, we have the much-loved bet building feature. This is a way for punters to build their own wagers, making big bets on the outcomes of multiple events. For example, you might bet on the results of three successive football games.
The risk is, of course, increased, but so is the reward. You will get a hefty pay out if you manage to accurately predict these outcomes.
Again, this is a feature that you see in virtually all the major betting sites now. It is something bettors have become used to, and operators know they need to offer these types of bets to take the top spots.
3. Bonuses and Promotions
For the bettors, probably the single most important thing we think about is how good the promotions and welcome bonuses are. This is one of the most obvious and immediate ways that operators are able to compete with each other. They offer a welcome bonus to new customers—usually in the form of free bets.
The most common way these work is you get X amount for your first deposit—for example, you might get €50 of free bets for your first €10 deposit. You can also get them in the form of bonuses of the amount of your first deposit.
Either way, a bookmaker cannot expect to attract many customers without a lucrative bonus on offer. Customers will simply go elsewhere.
4. Mobile Apps
Though the humble website is still very much here to stay, there is a clear and obvious trend towards mobile apps for betting. Smart phone users spend about 90% of their time on their phones on apps, compared to on websites.
If a bookmaker does not offer a mobile app, then they will have a much harder time getting to the levels of popularity of their competitors. Apps are more convenient, accessible, they improve the user experience, and are just overall the preferred way to play these games.
No doubt, in the future, apps will all but completely replace traditional betting websites. That said, there are still around 1,175 physical betting shops in Ireland, so the formats will continue to be mixed for some time.
5. Live Streaming
Finally, just being able to bet on the events via the apps isn’t enough anymore. Customers want to watch the events they are betting on. Many bookmakers are moving to offer this service, with livestreaming of any and all events that they can secure streaming rights too.
This means that the biggest bookmakers are essentially making sure that everything is done within their app. You make your bets and you watch the event unfold within the app or site itself—or even in the shop!
Again, people’s needs are simply changing, and the biggest bookmakers are typically the ones who recognise and move with this. By providing not only odds and markets to bet on, but live streams of the events, the bettor could not really want anything more from the app.
So, as you can see, there are some really great features that are common to pretty much all of the biggest betting sites. This is the basic way that these sites get to the size they do—they use great features to attract more and more customers. Certainly, the bonuses are one of the most important ways the biggest bookmakers compete with one another—but all of these factors go into their success.
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