It’s no secret that the African online betting market is one of the most lucrative markets on the planet right now. 

Even so, it poses several challenges to operators hoping to enter. 

Leading sports betting platform provider Uplatform recently published an analysis of what it means to be successful in this market. The report also explains the main challenges operators can expect to encounter. 

Infrastructure

Helping a bettor transition from retail betting to online betting can be challenging. 

In Africa, the challenge of infrastructure comes into play in a significant way due to the slow progression of online access. While only 33% of all Africans make use of the internet, this number varies enormously from country to country. 

For example, of Kenya’s population, a decent 85.5 percent of people have access to the internet. While in regions like South Sudan, Eritrea, and Western Sahara, that rate drops to an average of below 10 percent. 

For this reason, sports betting operators in Africa must adopt a so-called hybrid approach. This means having a strong presence in retail and online areas. 

A multi-channel path helps bettors to make the transition from retail to online at a pace they’re comfortable with. 

Another important factor is that less than 10 percent of African households have access to a personal computer. For most Africans, mobile devices such as smartphones are how they access the internet. For this reason, it’s crucial that operators follow a multi-device strategy, with full mobile access at its core. 

Other solutions for wider accessibility should include the option to place bets by SMS or even telegram. 

Transition

The Uplatform team concludes that nearly everybody currently enjoying retail betting (or offline betting) can be converted to online entertainment. 

To achieve this, operators must have a clear understanding of the reasons behind why people still prefer to bet offline. 

Many African bettors remain uncertain about the trustworthiness of the world of online sports betting. Others could be choosing retail betting over online betting because of a slow internet connection, or even due to socialization. 

To navigate the African betting market, operators must first understand the challenges if they’re to come up with an effective solution. 

In most cases, adopting an omnichannel approach involving both retail betting as well as online betting is the best starting point. This allows the provider to grow its online presence while still providing sports betting offerings to retail betting shops. 

Payments

Operators wanting to break into the African market must remove all possible obstacles, including that payment solutions. 

Africa poses a unique challenge to online providers in that less than 5% of its population owns a credit card. 

For this reason, it’s important that operators offer a wide range of local payment methods to bettors, including mobile payments, bank transfers, and e-vouchers. 

Preparation is Key

Operators must be mindful of the fact that young bettors in Africa between the ages of 18 and 29 are heavily influenced by innovation, technology, and convenience. 

Operators wanting to be successful in Africa must adapt their offerings to appeal to this segment of the market. 

Preparation remains the number 1 key to unlocking this market of enormous promise. 

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