Nearly Half of Mobile Sports Bettors Reduced Discretionary Spending at the End of 2022
New TransUnion report examines financial health and behaviors of mobile sports bettors
Nearly half of consumers who engaged in mobile sports betting (49%) reduced discretionary spending in Q4 2022, according to new research by TransUnion (NYSE: TRU). This included Millennials and high-value bettors—those who spend $500+ per month—both of which are key segments for the gaming industry and generally represent high-income earners.
The trend is largely due to concerns over the economy, as half of mobile sports bettors believe the U.S. is currently in a recession, while nearly 40% believe the U.S. will enter a recession in 2023. Consequently, the number of consumers who engaged in mobile sports betting dropped from 19% in Q2 2022 to 11% in Q4 2022.
Mobile sports bettors are not monolithic, especially in the high-value segment. As operators are focused on acquiring and retaining a sustainable pool of players, they’ll need access to rich data sources to help them identify sustainable players.
The research comprised an online survey of 2,835 adults in November 2022, as well as an analysis of gaming industry performance and consumer liquidity, leveraging TransUnion’s proprietary CreditVision® attributes. A full report of the findings is available in the new “Online Sports Betting Study.”
“While Millennials and high-value bettors have held back from gaming, operators should focus their efforts to stay engaged with them,” said Declan Raines, head of U.S. Gaming at TransUnion. “These groups are a key market segment and, given their optimism for personal finances over the next 12 months, are much more likely to become return players when the economy bounces back.”
A complex consumer segment
High-value bettors show considerably greater signs of resilience compared to mobile sports bettors in general and non-sports bettors. This includes levels of income, optimism over future income, and increased discretionary spending. However, this group also shows greater signs of distress, with increased usage of retirement savings and intent to cut back on discretionary spending, as well as increasing their usage of available credit.
Financial Health in Q4 2022: High-Value Bettors | Mobile Sports Bettors | Non-Sports Bettors
Household Finances Better Than Planned
Income Increased in Past Three Months
Optimistic About Household Income Over Next 12 Months
Used Retirement Savings in Past Three Months
Cut back on discretionary spending
Increased usage of available credit
*HVB (High-Value Bettor) | MSB (Mobile Sports Bettor) | NSB (Non-Sports Bettor)
Both positive and negative indicators should be caveated by comparison to findings from Q2 2022. For example, fewer mobile sports bettors saw their incomes increase in Q4 compared to Q2—and fewer reported optimism for increased income over the next 12 months. Conversely, the number of mobile sports bettors who used retirement savings and increased usage of available credit fell in Q4 2022.
Here again, high-value bettors managed to buck some of these trends. When looking at increased incomes, high-value bettors did manage to do better in Q4, albeit by a small degree (85% in Q4 vs. 82% in Q2).
“Mobile sports bettors are not monolithic, especially in the high-value segment,” said Raines. “As operators are focused on acquiring and retaining a sustainable pool of players, they’ll need access to rich data sources to help them identify sustainable players.”
For more information about the research, read the “Online Sports Betting Study.”
This online survey of 2,835 adults was conducted Nov. 1–9, 2022, by TransUnion in partnership with third-party research provider, Dynata. Adults 18 years of age and older residing in the United States were surveyed using an online research panel method across a combination of desktop, mobile, and tablet devices. Survey questions were administered in English. All states are represented in the study survey responses. To ensure general population sample representativeness across United States resident demographics, the survey included quotas to balance responses to the census statistics on the dimensions of age, gender, household income, race, and region. Generations are defined as follows: Gen Z, born 1995–2004; Millennials, born 1980–1994; Gen X, born 1965–1979; and Baby Boomers, born 1944–1964. These research results are unweighted and statistically significant at a 95% confidence level within ±1.84 percentage points based on calculated error margin. Please note some chart percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding or multiple answers being accepted.
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