Paysafe Survey Reveals Sportsbook Customer Priorities

Data from Paysafe’s recent market survey reveals that customers prioritize ease and speed of payouts above all else when choosing a sportsbook.

Consumers Prioritize Easy Payouts

Leading integrated payments platform Paysafe has published the results of its most recent All The Ways Players Pay research survey. The survey aims to understand consumers’ payment habits and preferences in order to optimize product offerings.

The survey was commissioned in December 2020 and was conducted in eight regulated online gambling markets in the US – Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. The data provides important insights as to how consumers prioritize the various services and opportunities that sportsbook can offer.

According to the survey data, US sports bettors prioritize quick and easy payouts of winnings. Around 37% of participants listed this as the most important factor when choosing an online sportsbook service.

An accompanying factor is the presence of alternative payment methods, such as a digital wallet. Alternative methods can help sportsbooks deal with various potential hiccups in the payouts and transactions, such as card declines.

The remaining four factors are of secondary importance to consumers, though not by a wide margin. From most to least important, these factors are brand reputation (32%), promotions (28%), competitive odds (27%), and sports markets offer (11%).

Payouts and Declines

Payouts are by far the most important factor for consumer retention. According to the data, dissatisfaction with the speed and ease of payouts was the leading factor for consumers to withdraw from the platform. In fact, 79% left with a negative opinion of the sportsbook if their payouts took longer than expected.

The importance of card declines cannot be understated as well. Frequent instances of card decline negatively impact customers’ experience and perception of the company. In turn, this hurts the brand’s reputation, which damages its customer retention and acquisition.

According to the survey, 47% of participants would blame the sportsbook itself for card declines. Around 45% would drop the brand if faced with frequent declines, and 65% would not recommend the product to their peers. This is noteworthy due to the apparent increase in card decline instances. The frequency has increased from 10% in January 2019 to 14% in January 2021.

The data reveals that providing alternative payment methods can help overcome the challenges posed by card declines. Digital wallets are by far the most preferred method (35%) and are used primarily by high-volume bettors. This is likely because of the flexibility provided by digital wallets.

Market Context

The recent developments in the gambling market do not exist in a vacuum. The ongoing pandemic and the associated socioeconomic developments are quickly changing the face of gambling.

Perhaps the most relevant factor for the developments in the gambling market is the economic crisis. Weaker economies create an environment of financial fear and insecurity among the population, which in turn affects their gambling behavior. Simply put, gambling becomes more viable as a form of income during economic downturns.

The lockdown plays an important role as well. This year, many casinos and land-based gambling locations were forced to shut down for a prolonged period of time. This has allowed online gambling and sports betting to thrive. While casinos have reopened, albeit, with occupancy limitations, we see a very obvious drop in attendance in some cases.

According to the study, 68% of sports bettors say that the pandemic has made them more comfortable with online gambling. Furthermore, 61% say that they plan on gambling and wagering online more frequently in 2021. This drastic shift in the public perception of online gambling has certainly contributed to the massive growth the new market is experiencing.

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