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Let’s Talk Gambling: Leveling up retention with the power of human engagement

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Lets Talk Gambling With Jenny Riley From 2mee

Talk Gambling Founder & CEO Ross Timmins spoke with Jenny Riley, Head of Customer Success at 2mee to discuss how operators can level up retention with the power of human engagement. Jenny says that while onboarding and KYC is a major friction point for operators that can see up to 45% of players drop off, human pop-ups can push players through the process while fostering trust

The number one priority for online sports bettors and casino players is getting down to it. While they understand there is an onboarding process to go through when signing up for a brand for the first time, they expect that process to be smooth, seamless and fast.

For the operator, onboarding is not only a necessity under KYC and compliance requirements, but it’s also the first experience the player will have with their brand. This means it’s critical to make a good first impression and set expectations for what the player experience will be like.

Nail this, and the relationship between player and sportsbook/casino brands gets off to a great start, get it wrong and the player is likely to drop off before even making a deposit. Given the sky-high cost of acquisition and fierce competition, operators can’t afford (literally) for this to happen.

So, what factors make onboarding arduous?

In most cases, it’s the number of steps the player is required to go through, often without explanation as to why they have to go through each step and how many more steps are to come. Another is being asked to provide too much personal information, especially around affordability.

This is a significant loss point for all of the operators we speak to, with poor onboarding seeing up to 45% of potential customers dropping off during the process.

“if it’s too hard for customers to sign up, deposit and play, they won’t.”

Ultimately, if it’s too hard for customers to sign up, deposit and play, they won’t. They will likely ask themselves “If signing up is this hard, will spending my time there be worth it? I mean, how long will it take to withdraw my winnings if it takes this long to make a deposit?”.

Of course, operators are obliged to perform know-your-customer checks and in regulated markets such as the UK, these checks are likely to become more stringent. But these checks are important for protecting players, too.

Operators can determine how they go about KYC. Some allow players to sign up, deposit and bet with very few friction points but then require customers to complete a KYC check when they want to withdraw their cash or winnings.

This then usually requires them to complete forms with personal details, contacts, addresses, email and other fields and, in some cases, provide additional ID documentation. To the player, this can feel like the operator is dragging its feet when it comes to paying out.

This makes for a catch-22 for operators – they either carry out the KYC checks at sign up and risk the player dropping off if the process has too much friction, or they do it at withdrawal but risk frustrating players if it delays their payout.

From a psychological perspective, people are naturally guarded about how they share their personal information, especially online.

Skirting around these regulatory and KYC requirements is a no-go, and understandably so. This means operators need to find clever solutions to reduce friction in the sign up process by improving the end-user experience.

This means giving players more information about the KYC process and the information they need to provide and why, and on their terms. This can be done by making changes to how information is provided to players, the information that is provided and by using smart technologies.

At 2mee, we believe human pop-ups are incredibly effective at doing this. This allows operators to leverage the power of face-to-face communication and the strong trust that can be fostered between bettor and brand through a real, recognisable face.

A frustrated player may be wary or not understand why they are being asked to provide personal details, why those details are required and how their information will be used. Operators can explain this in text, but it can be hard to read on a smartphone device and is usually wrapped up in legalese.

But a human pop-up can explain all of this easily and clearly in a conversational tone that everyday players can understand. By delivering the message using a real person, a human connection is formed, and the player is far more likely to complete the actions required of them.

In short, sportsbooks and casinos can better inform customers in plain-speaking terms, empowering them to own the choices they make while engendering trust, transparency and play (both for the first time and continued) with their brand.

Hi, I'm Ross, founder of Talk Gambling. I've operated within the gambling industry for several years, primarily within the affiliate sector. I originally focused on design and user experience but in recent years I've pursued a passion for SEO, digital marketing and creating great content. Please feel free to get in touch and say hello!

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