Why do so many women play bingo online in the UK?
We invited Paul Marion, a UK bingo expert, who writes for Bingo HQ, an online bingo review site that helps players engage and discover the best deals offered by today’s leading bingo brands, to share his input with us on PlayersJet so we can gain a better understanding why women play bingo.
Bingo has always attracted large number of female players, even when you go back to before the addition of online games, local bingo halls and clubs across the UK were the place where female players would gather for fun and bingo excitement.
So what is it that drives females to be the predominate demographic for online bingo games and other similar social gaming sites?
Bingo is a social game and is more rewarding when played amongst friends. Unlike play Casino games, bingo is enhanced while you chat and engage with other players in the game. It is an opportunity for friends to connect online, catch up, share and be part of something greater than themselves.
Women tend to be more of a social butterfly than men and that could be one reason why today, the UK bingo demographic is 90% female vs. 10% male players.
Knowing your customer group well is vital to online bingo operators, but are today’s UK bingo operator doing a good enough job catering to true needs of bingo players?
If you poke around any new bingo site to existing well established brands like Gala Bingo and Tombola Bingo, you’ll notice the following:
- Free Bonus War – which site has gives away the best free bingo bonuses?
- No Deposit Bingo War – which new site offers the highest no deposit bingo offers?
- Jackpot Wars – which site will give me the biggest bingo jackpot?
Today’s pay to play bingo sites compete on those three exclusive offers and I believe, most sites are missing an obvious strategy and understanding why drives women to play social games like bingo.
If you step a bit outside of pay to play bingo and look at today’s Popular Facebook Bingo Games and other social gaming like Farm Vill, you’ll find there hundreds of millions playing these games online through Facebook.
If you pay attention to these games, you’ll soon realise that these games are not always the best designed games and certainly don’t offer any real cash prizes, free bonuses or free no deposit bingo. Instead what they offer is something greater that pay to play UK bingo brands are missing out on – these successful games are satisfying emotional needs that women tend to value:
- A sense of reward
- A sense of progress
- A sense of achievement
And if you take a closer look at core demographic of these social games, you’ll find forty-three years old housewives. I submit, that these valuable demographic in their everyday lives are not getting a lot of sense of achievement, progress, status, and affirmation. Given they’re so hungry to get these emotional needs from anywhere, they’re getting them at the moment from online social games like Facebook bingo games and City Vill.
UK online websites, from the new to the well established can start to bring more of these gamefication elements to their bingo game experience, to improve loyalty and player engagement. Through effective game mechanics bingo sites can further engage their users in a more meaningful way and reap tangible business benefits, such as increased customer loyalty and increased time spent on site vs. getting stuck in free bonus and prize wars with other operators which only creates commodity instead of strong brand loyalty.
Note to UK Bingo operators, take a closer look at successful social gaming apps on Facebook and study the different game mechanics they use to drive engagement with their players. Then, try to implement some of these game mechanics to your own bingo site, analyse, measure and tweak. I’m positive, over time, you’ll waste less money on meaningless bonuses, prizes and provide female bingo players what they really want, an experience that satisfies their emotional needs.