The new survey from Synergy Blue highlights several factors that will impact the gaming industry going forward including the effect of the economy and health and safety standards on consumer confidence, while the report also suggests that younger gamblers will lead the way in returning to casinos following the coronavirus pandemic.
Synergy Blue has released a new report revealing consumer opinions on casino gambling in a post-COVID world.
The company surveyed gamblers to better understand what they will expect from operators in order to return to casinos. While the data shows gamblers’ confidence in casinos – 51 percent say they’ll return to casinos once they reopen – it also reveals the need for some long-term changes.
“The casino industry has been hit hard by the crisis and, with high levels of uncertainty surrounding the long-term impact, it’s difficult to map out the best path forward,” said Georg Washington, CEO of Synergy Blue. “Our goal with this report is to provide the industry with resources and insight into what gamblers would like to see and, more importantly, what they expect from casinos when they return. We’re all in this together. And together, we can rebuild our industry. But in order to do that, we’ll need to reshape it to fit the changed preferences of our biggest supporters: the gamers and gamblers themselves.”
The report, titled The Path Forward for Casinos in a Post-Covid World, is based on a survey conducted in late April 2020 of 1,000 gamblers about how their expectations have changed and multiple factors that will impact their return to casino floors, including the experiences they now seek, the role the economy plays in their confidence, and if their interest in online and mobile gambling will continue after social distancing.
The study examines the health and safety standards that gamblers would like to see. While confidence is solid, gamblers also believe casinos need to take ongoing measures to ensure health and safety. The survey found that 56 percent of gamblers said casinos need to permanently improve their health and safety standards following the pandemic.
The report also uncovers a dynamic that has long been on the radar of casinos. The data shows that a shift in casino demographics may happen much sooner than expected. Older gamblers are more hesitant to return to casinos amid higher concerns about health and safety. But younger demographics are now poised to lead the charge toward casino recovery. Nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of younger gamblers (ages 29 and under) and 56 percent of those ages 30-45 say they’ll gamble in casinos again once stay-at-home orders have lifted. Only 40 percent of respondents over age 60 said they too would return.
While slots were the traditional main draw for casinos, a younger generation of gamblers also points to declining interest in traditional slots. The survey found less than half (47 percent) of those 29 and under and 58 percent of 30-45 year olds said slot games would draw them back to casinos, compared to 69 percent of 45-60 year olds, and 73 percent of those 60 and older who are drawn to slot games.
The report also includes several additional findings. Of those planning to return, 48 percent said their gambling spend would remain the same. Nearly two-thirds said they gambled online or played mobile games (pay to play/free to play) during the pandemic, and of those, 93 percent said they will continue with online or mobile gambling once stay-athome orders have lifted. Of those who are unsure or not planning to return, 58 percent say it’s because they’re uneasy about the economy.