Spinola Gaming’s Ade Repcenko raises the current issues facing traditional lotteries as more and more countries across the world go on lockdown to combat the CoronaVirus outbreak.
For as long as we know it, Lotteries have relied on sales through traditional corner store outlets in order to raise money for good causes, provide people with real-life dreams, and turn countless people into millionaires across the globe.
For this traditional model to work, it is heavily reliant on foot traffic – people frequent these corner stores where they can purchase lottery tickets – but this model is now under threat. China’s lottery sales plummeted 43.4 percent in January, while Italy’s Superenalotto recorded minimal sales between draws from the period of Feb to March 2020. This appears to be due to the fact that both China and Italy are suffering the most turbulent time in their recent history, with the widespread aggressive outbreak of COVID-19, resulting in millions of people being on quarantine and lockdown. This unprecedented situation highlights the vulnerability of the global land-based lottery market to such drastic events, and the need for companies to go online and be available to customers in a virtual space.
The spread of CoronaVirus throughout the globe has highlighted the potential threat to the oldest and most popular form of gambling, and the knock-on effect is far greater than we could imagine. Online Gaming in general is seeing a spike in revenue as more and more people across the globe become immobilized and confined to their homes, with more time on their hands to make use of online gambling products. This is an opportunity that should also be enjoyed by lotteries, but without them being available online, the opportunity is missed out on.
The global increase of smartphones and e-commerce has highlighted how people from all walks of life prefer to shop on the move, and in their own time. Amazon has become the most dominant e-commerce marketplace in the world, putting many retailers out of business as more and more people opt for an easier way to shop.
Lotteries have lagged behind in the online world, but it is time for them to quickly start adapting to the mobile marketplace and see the benefits of how moving online will allow them to be more effective in their marketing strategies, and sell more tickets to a new market of players who don’t visit the corner store. But there is more to it than that… The outbreak of the CoronaVirus just highlights the need to be more accessible, more available, and how important it is to take games directly to the people, and not rely on where they physically visit, to make sales.