The next generation of bingo

Bingo club admissions have been in decline since 2012, but investment into new formats and venue updates aim to put a stop to this decline and move the market in a positive direction. A big topic of conversation is how to broaden the appeal of bingo, particularly for younger players who currently view bingo as something for a slightly older audience.

With this in mind, what is the industry doing to invigorate bingo halls in an attempt to attract younger age groups?

In 2016, Mecca and Gala proposed new venue concepts in order to appeal to a younger audience. Mecca plans to open city-centre venues with a range of food and drink in order to create a similar social environment to bars, pubs and coffee shops. Gala has also designed a new venue, where there’s slot machines, ‘after-hours Bingo’ and pub style food to attract younger players as well as a 500 seat hall for a more traditional bingo experience.

While the industry are going to great lengths to encourage younger generations to visit bingo halls, are there any opportunities to attract younger age groups to play online?

Recent results from Mintel suggest there’s potential for mobile gambling to attract a younger audience, as the proportion of 18-24 year olds using smartphones to gamble is higher than that of desktop (44% vs. 32%).

As well as this, our Business Science benchmarks for the Entertainment & Leisure sector show that since the beginning of 2016, the proportion of web traffic driven by mobile has overtaken that of desktop and continues to increase.

However, Gala Bingo claim that over half of its members are now playing on electronic tablets in their bingo halls, demonstrating that retail and online bingo don’t have to be treated as two separate entities. As well as creating a more informal and flexible atmosphere, the merging of online and retail bingo allows the two types of play to work together, allowing for a more seamless experience for customers.