Africa's Online Betting Challenges
With its growing number of young sports fans, high levels of technological adoption, and regulated markets, Africa is one of the most exciting and promising markets in the world. However, African markets can also pose some challenges, despite their high potential.
There are several challenges that operators planning to expand to the African market need to be aware of and tips for overcoming them are provided in this article. We at Uplatfrom know the challenges and complexities of this market well and have shared some valuable insights with you below.
Challenges in Infrastructure
Online betting can convert offline bettors, but the transition entails quite a few challenges. Access to the internet is a critical issue in Africa because it is relatively slow. A third of Africans use the internet, but the number varies greatly across the entire region. In Kenya, for example, the penetration rate is 85.2%; however, rates are below 10% in Western Sahara, Eritrea, and South Sudan.
To have a successful betting business in Africa, operators have to be able to handle all types of betting and react effectively to market changes. Where does the operator start?
Firstly, an omni-channel platform is necessary to be effective, albeit a hybrid one. You must have a presence online and in retail. More and more operators are opening their doors to players adopting omni-channel strategies. This strategy serves a dual purpose: it allows players to easily and gently adapt to changes such as lockdowns while simultaneously educating them on the advantages of online solutions, thereby speeding up the move to online betting.
In Africa, mobile devices are the most common method of accessing the internet, as less than 10% of households have computers. Despite the increase in time spent online and wide use of devices, the widespread process of expanding digital coverage and changing will take some time. As a result, operators must implement a multi-device solution to match the market's unique requirements; Uplatform offers a variety of options to serve African bettors, including a fully adaptable website with a light web version, mobile versions, and applications for iOS, Android, and Windows.
In addition to all of these advantages, Uplatform makes it easy to create a betting site that everyone can easily use and navigate. After implementation, an effective marketing strategy is essential for informing potential new members about the benefits of bonuses and why trying something new is a good option.
Challenges in Transition
Bettors from Africa also bet online, but for various reasons, they prefer retail. Inadequate internet connection or socialization could be two factors. It's also possible that they're hesitant to make a total transition since they're unsure how much they trust online betting websites.
Online betting can be enjoyed by nearly everyone who currently enjoys betting offline. Operators must fully comprehend the reasons why people opt to remain offline in order to effectively reach this goal. Operators can develop a concrete plan for moving forward and converting an increasing number of wagers by researching the market and segmenting different types of customers.
As there is still land-based and online betting, an omni-channel solution can be beneficial in many cases. This strategy allows the operator to expand their online business while maintaining their traditional betting shops. Uplatform provides a complete omni-channel solution: shared wallet, loyalty program and access via one registration. Players may deposit and bet offline and vice versa while preserving their bonuses and loyalty programs.
Challenges facing payments
A betting site must offer all local payment methods to be successful. Several parts of the world have already used this approach. So what is different about Africa that makes it necessary to use a unique approach? Typically, online banking methods such as e-wallets and credit cards are less prevalent here than in most other parts of the world. The percentage of Africans with a credit card is less than 5%.
Alternative payment methods, such as e-vouchers and cash deposits, are the most popular. Nevertheless, it's worth mentioning that mobile payments hit highs in 2021. In Kenya, for instance, 84 percent of internet users used their mobile phones to make a purchase. The figure in Nigeria is 60 percent, and it is expected to rise. As more people move to the main banking options, African betting sites must continue to offer the region's most commonly used and preferred payment options.
Uplatform provides our partnered clients with a wide selection of local payment providers and alternative payment methods, including bank transfers, e-vouchers, and mobile payments, comprising more than 300 payment options to select from. Collaboration with agents is also one of the most important aspects of developing business in the African market. Uplatform also offers a software solution to help with setting up an efficient agent system.
The Covid Impact
The last couple of years have had a big impact on sport in Africa, in a few different ways. Perhaps the most noticeable effect has been the cancellation, postponement or playing behind closed doors of numerous high-profile sporting events. Since the likes of the African Cup of Nations and the CAF Champions League are among the most popular events for sports betting here, any change reduces the options for online bettors.
To make up for this, many of the region's operators compensated by offering extra options, such as Esports and casino games, while virtual sports betting helped keep football fans entertained while stadiums were closed. Although this contributed to introducing Africans to alternative gambling activities, the overall effect was still a decrease in betting numbers.
Sport has returned to normal in recent months, with more fans betting on events, with the online option becoming more widely known than it was before. One of the other impacts seen around the world and repeated in Africa is how many people have saved more money in the past few years due to uncertainty about the future.
Uplatform recently participated in a roundtable that discussed the future of online betting in Africa. It is initiatives like these that are ensuring the market's future success, with exciting levels of growth set to continue thanks to the way the industry's leaders are facing up to the challenges ahead. You can check it out here.
Entering the African market requires operators to be prepared
Africa's young adults, aged 18 to 29, are influenced by convenience, innovation, and technology, with 21% of the population ages 18 to 29. However, the customary tradition of bet shop gambling, local agents, and the lack of quality digital infrastructure greatly influence the betting market in Africa.
Despite the reopening of African economies and major sporting events, the African betting market has its challenges and its preferred ways. An analysis of the increasing need for African-inspired business solutions was presented in this article. And Uplatform's range of solutions highlights the need to be prepared, with solutions such as SMS and telegram, along with the determination to be flexible and adapt to the region's needs.
With its diverse cultures, lack of wide-scale digitalization, and local customs, the African continent can present a bit of a challenge. Furthermore, to form a strong connection and build trust with your brand, African bettors must conveniently be offered everything they need. As a result, having the correct strategies and tools is critical for success.
Uplatform offers the solutions and expertise to help you overcome these challenges. Whether you want to launch into the African market or enhance your current operations with new solutions, we can help. Feel free to contact our professional team for expert advice.