Illinois Online Casino Advocates Can Tout iGaming Demand Among Women

Illinois Online Casino Advocates Can Tout iGaming Demand Among Women
Fact Checked by Jim Tomlin

Analysis of iGaming customers reveal a gender disparity between customers who prefer online sports gambling as opposed to those who are fans of other types of gaming, such as slots and table games.

And recent findings are likely one more way advocates of legalizing Illinois online casinos can bolster their arguments.

Rush Street: 53% of iGaming Customers Are Female

According to Rush Street Interactive, the Illinois-based parent company of BetRivers and PlaySugarHouse, males make up 83% of the sports betting cohort compared to just 17% female. However, female customers make up 53% of the iGaming (or iCasino) users compared to 47% of male customers.

While the above figures represent statistics from just one operator, they agree with the broader findings about gaming in general that other gambling research had shown.

Illinois does not currently have legalized iGaming, the term-of-art for online versions of slots and table games. Legislation for Illinois iGaming was introduced in both the state House of Representative and the state Senate. But those bills are in a race for passage before the legislature adjourns on May 19.

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Another Study Covers Online Casino Demographics

Returning to the appeal iGaming has for various demographic casino cohorts, a report prepared by Spectrum Gaming, a New Jersey-based gaming consultancy for Indiana Gaming Commission and published last July, discussed the demographics of online gaming.

Only six states have regulated iGaming, and Indiana is not one of them. Only New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Connecticut, West Virginia and Delaware have legalized iGaming, though it is widely conceded U.S. gamblers can access iGaming at illegal offshore gambling websites.

In its 100-plus-page report for Indiana, Spectrum Gaming noted the following from Golden Nugget Online Gaming data: For online sports betting customers (ages 30-35), the breakdown was 95% male to 5% female; for iGaming customers (ages 40-45), the customers were 55% male; for land-based casino customers (ages 50-55), the clientele was 51% female.

Sports Betting Much More Widespread than iGaming

So far, the spread of online gambling or mobile gambling has largely been about sports, such as wagers available at Illinois sportsbooks. More than 30 states have legalized sports betting and a substantial number include mobile sports betting.

With a certain target audience in mind, the marketing and advertising by national sportsbooks has had a distinct tenor.

When casino demographics have been studied, it has been found in the brick-and-mortar gambling world that slots customers have skewed both more female and older than other types of gamblers. Slots make up a substantial part of online casino gambling, which has grown in popularity just like the use of online Illinois sports betting apps.

Slots Studied at Traditional Casinos

An Oregon State study published in 2013, looking at gambling behaviors in traditional casinos, concluded “the most common profile of a slot machine enthusiast was a female homeowner, between the ages of 55 and 60, with at least some college education and an annual household income of more than $55,000.”

How much such a profile might translate to the current gaming landscape, one that has evolved in the last decade to include the potential for gambling on smart phones and computers, remains to seen.

Also to be seen will be the nature of the U.S. online gaming industry’s marketing outreach in the years ahead.

In the meantime, check out the top Illinois sports betting promos available at IllinoisBet.

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Bill Ordine covers state gambling issues for He was a reporter and editor in news and sports for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Baltimore Sun for 25 years, and was a lead reporter on a team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News. Bill started reporting on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for 10 years.

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