A lot of hopes have been put on the shoulders of legalized sports betting, especially in New Jersey.
States with sports betting hope the additional revenues will make up for budget shortfalls.
Casinos and racetracks that offer sports betting hope the additional activity will contribute to its bottom line and attract new customers to its other gaming offerings.
The sports leagues hope sports betting will increase fan engagement, bolster its viewing audiences and result in a new revenue stream.
Sports bettors hope a legal sports betting market will drive competitive lines and offer a fun and engaging environment to get some skin in the game.
And guess what? Those hopes are turning into reality. And, it is probably not a surprise that the online sports betting market is doing the majority of the work.
The power of online sports betting
In September, 52 percent of New Jersey’s sports betting revenue came from online sports betting. Oh, and it was the first full month of online sports betting revenue.
That percentage is likely to grow in the coming months as more sportsbooks come online and as new customers settle into placing bets online. The power of legal online sports betting goes beyond just revenue, though.
A regulated sports betting market provides assurances to the sports bettor that will help the market grow beyond expectations. Specifically, it provides:
Convenience – Obviously, the convenience to place a sports bet in the comfort of one’s home (or wherever, as long as it is in the state), is a key contributor to the power of online sports betting. There is no doubt that bets happen that might not have happened if a trip to the local casino was mandatory.
Confidence – Having confidence that deposits and payouts are safe is necessary. Online gambling with real money can be risky. Knowing the money is on a regulated site eliminates the risk. Of course, it does not reduce the risk of losing the bet.
Competitiveness – A competitive legal market provides the avid sports bettor with the option to shop around for the best lines.
These reasons and more are not only why a legal online sports market is robust, but why it will continue to grow.
Power to the little guys
Retail locations have characteristics like location, size, and amenities that help drive revenue. The bigger casinos in the better locations tend to do more business.
Online sportsbooks, on the other hand, aren’t constrained by such parameters. Offering online sports betting levels the playing field to some degree.
The Meadowlands, the undisputed leader in the retail sports betting space, brought in $4.4 million in September. Even though it is on the same campus as the New York Jets and Giants, it couldn’t compare to Resorts $8.5 million for online sports betting.
The sports betting fever will spread
As states tackle sports betting legislation, all eyes are on New Jersey, even more so than Nevada.
Sure, Nevada is still the top earner among sports betting states, but New Jersey is new to the market. While they had legislation on the books, they still had to put regulations in place and then launch the thing.
Most would say the launch of the brand new gambling vertical was successful. There were some hiccups here and there, as one would expect given the nascent industry. Even so, New Jersey posted nearly $24 million with only four months of sports betting and only one of those including online figures.
The bottom line is the power of a regulated online sports betting market is in its ability to reach more customers and drive revenue. And States’ regulatory bodies across the US are paying attention.