Mobile Casino Lobby Review

gala casino

How effective is your mobile casino

The online gambling industry is a highly competitive market where the aim of every operator is to maximise the value of the customer by keeping them playing for as long as possible.

In the mobile environment, this is even more crucial as users can easily get distracted by a variety of other apps occupying their home screens. They can abandon the app if it doesn’t offer what they’re looking for straight away or has too many steps to find a game. It’s important to consider how an online casino interface and user experience (UX) could be optimised for mobile and tablet devices to provide the best possible experience, as well as directing users to the right tasks.

This report follows our review of desktop casinos and aims to evaluate mobile casino lobbies of the same brands. It provides evaluation of the available features, UX best practices and recommendations for improvement that operators could consider. This report focuses solely on the mobile UX of casino lobbies and the key actions users would take to start playing.

The objectives of this report are to

  • Create an awareness of different UX practices in mobile environment for online casinos
  • Evaluate existing mobile casino features
  • Offer suggestions on how to develop or improve some of the mobile features

The Degree 53 team has been working with gambling operators for over a decade, helping them to innovate online gambling products with their mobile app and web development solutions.

Degree 53 holds the Remote Gambling Software Licence accredited by the UK Gambling Commission which enables it to provide software development services to the UK gambling industry. The experts have an in-depth understanding of the challenges operators frequently face and how to overcome them with digital products and solutions.

The team of experts at Degree 53 carried out research for this report and evaluated casino lobbies utilising a standard usability review to score different UX components (homepage, error prevention, consistency, common functionalities). The review can be applied to any mobile website or app which helps to establish a basic level of the features it should have. More about the usability review can be found in the Methodology section.

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Key findings

The figures below show a substantial demand for online gambling products, which means there’s a big potential for operators in terms of user acquisition and retention. Mobiles and tablets enable users to access different services on the go and engage with different apps more frequently than with desktop websites. There’s a big potential for casino operators to gain some of that space on the devices of their players.

This can be done by providing a smooth gaming experience tailored to these platforms. A clear UX that doesn’t involve too many steps is more likely to draw users back to the casino. As there can be very little brand loyalty among players, who are always on the search for better offers, it could be a powerful tool of keeping them playing. Therefore, one way of retaining customers could be by improving the UX, making sure the journey is simple, enjoyable and offers a great gaming experience.

Since 2009, the UK online gambling sector has grown by around 150%, currently being estimated at £4.5 billion.

More than 6.5 million people regularly visit gambling websites. 43% of these users play on their mobile and tablet devices.

Online casino games have seen a surge in popularity in the past few years, taking up 63% of the overall gaming activity, which is a 11% increase from 2013.

Mobile UX best practices

There is a variety of considerations for creating an online casino for portable devices, from screen sizes, operating systems, different versions to user behaviours. It’s also important to keep in mind the different situations when users might be engaging with an online casino on their mobiles and tablets. They can be commuting, waiting in a queue, sitting in a cafe or checking their account for short periods of time while at work. This means that they don’t have much time to browse the website or app and the UX of a mobile casino needs to address that.

One of the ways a good mobile casino user experience can be achieved is making specific functions faster and more relevant to the objectives of the user – to play a casino game. The steps of registering or logging in and depositing money are essential to reach these goals. Efficiency is important to make sure the user doesn’t switch to another app or task.

Best practices for a mobile casino UX:

  • Availability of an optimised mobile website or a specialist app for a number of platforms
  • Clear, uncluttered UI with a good overview of available options and services
  • Key calls to action, such as register, log in, deposit or play should be prominent and accessible from the homepage
  • The UI needs to adapt to the screen size, so the player wouldn’t need to zoom in or accidentally tap the wrong button
  • Accessible help and contact details
  • Consistent and legible content
  • Simple registration forms
  • Efficient search functionality
  • The UX needs to guide users to their main objectives

Common Trends

Here are the strongest and weakest UX features that we’ve come across in our evaluation of mobile casino lobbies.

Good points

  • Demo plays available
  • Responsive mobile website and apps
  • Mobile casino available on iOS and Android
  • Strong focus on registration
  • Native app functionalities used (Touch ID, onboarding)
  • Clear layout and a good overview of available features
  • Simple registration forms
  • Support for users of all levels
  • Operators can be contacted in different ways
  • Consistency between web and app casino versions
mobile phone pros
mobile phone

Not so good points

  • Different UI before and after the login
  • No search functionality
  • Illegible and unclear CTAs or banners
  • No game information
  • Limited browsing options
  • Hidden or missing Help and contact details
  • Bugs or slow performance of the app
  • Small game icons
  • Confusing navigation

Reviews

888

The 888 mobile casino app offers a good overview of the available games and content. However, the confusing navigation and lack of user support significantly bring down its UX. Inconsistencies in design and page structure may hinder some users too, resulting in lower sign up rates and spend.

The mobile web version mirrors 888’s desktop functionality, offering a number of different casino services. However, it also suffers from a complex navigation and changing UI after the login. The Help section doesn’t fit
the screen and is hard to browse, so users may struggle to find relevant information.

888 mobile casino

Pros

  • Demo plays available
  • New users are able to play demo versions
  • Strong focus on user acquisition

Cons

  • Inconsistent UI before and after the login in the web version
  • The mobile casino has confusing navigation and a lack of search functionality
  • The Help section has bugs (doesn’t fit the screen), is difficult to navigate and the operator can only be contacted via a form

Recommenations

  • Use a consistent look and UX across the web and app versions
  • Create a simple and relevant Help section with multiple ways of getting in touch with the operator
  • Create an intuitive navigation and prominent buttons/ CTAs to direct users to key tasks

bet365

bet365’s mobile casino caters to different platforms, focusing on the variety of games on offer. The app provides a more engaging gaming experience and user support than the web version.

The web version needs to be updated to be in line with the mobile app. This would further enhance the gaming experience and bring consistency between the two platforms.

bet365 mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino has a strong focus on the available games and relevant content
  • The apps are intuitive and offer easy access to key features, such as account, help and game rules
  • The apps offer great user support with an accessible Help section and various methods to reach the operator

Cons

  • The web version has confusing navigation and a lack of search functionality which some users may struggle with
  • The web version doesn’t display Help or
    contact details in the most prominent way
  • Both web and app versions need to clearly display all the key CTAs and main navigation points

Recommendations

  • Create a more consistent UX and UI between the web and app versions
  • Offer more support to users of all levels, from an intuitive Help section to live chat and casino specific FAQs
  • Highlight the more popular features and content with clear CTAs, offering easy access and an intuitive UX

Betfair

Betfair’s mobile casino displays a great game selection and has a simple navigation across both apps and the web. Both offer key features a user would need, e.g. registering or logging in, finding out about promotions
and learning about the available games. New users are well supported with Betfair offering demo plays and being able to access Help from the homepage.

One of the drawbacks of having so many features on the homepage is that it makes the layout quite busy. Some icons are quite small and potentially hard to read, as some game names don’t fit on the line and can’t be seen very well amongst the graphics. The UI could provide a clearer snapshot of the available features and use larger icons for improved visibility.

betfair mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino has a strong focus on the
    available games and relevant content
  • The apps offer easy access to key features, such as account, help and game rules
  • The apps offer great user support with an accessible Help section and various methods to reach the operator

Cons

  • Both web and app versions have a busy
    layout, with some game icons and names being hard to read
  • The iOS version lacks the search functionality, including live chat and social media

Recommendations

  • Provide more casino specific content,
    especially in Help
  • Declutter the UI to allow for larger elements and a clearer overview of the available games and features
  • Introduce the search functionality to help users find games faster

BetVictor

BetVictor’s mobile casino app and web versions are very similar. They tick all the boxes in terms of offering an overview of available games and a simple registration process, as well as offering demo plays. The layout is
quite clear, although game icons and banner copy could be larger in size for improved visibility.

Both versions lack the Help section, live chat and search functionality, which may hinder many users. It’s also hard to find BetVictor’s contact details. Adding these features would significantly improve the user experience for many players, particularly new ones.

BetVictor mobile casino

Pros

  • The casino lobby layout in the app and web versions is clear and uncluttered
  • The app navigation is clear and is solely focused on the casino
  • The registration form is simple and easy to complete

Cons

Recommendations

Betway

Betway’s mobile casino website and apps are very similar, with a good selection of games and features. However, the navigation is too complex and could be simplified for easier user journey. The casino could be optimised to support users of all levels, including providing a more relevant Help section and demo plays.

The mobile website has a dual landing page - there are two UIs, which might be slightly confusing for first-time users. The app comes up in search as Betway casino, however it also contains sports betting, live casino and vegas options which the user might not expect. This also means that there are extra features that casino-only users won’t need.

betway mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino has a strong focus on user registration and promotion of its games
  • The mobile casino offers good support for new and regular players, including live chat and other contact details
  • Users can browse games by different categories or search for specific ones

Cons

  • The mobile casino has a limited Help section which opens in a browser from the apps
  • The navigation is complex and it’s hard to get back to the casino page from certain sections
  • The mobile casino has a dual landing page and duplicates the account menu

Recommendations

  • Streamline the navigation and menu options across the mobile casino for an improved UX
  • Offer casino specific help, game information and demo plays to support all users
  • Optimise the registration form to facilitate the process and help users complete it quicker

Coral

Coral’s mobile casino app and web versions are very similar in terms of layout, design and functionalities, however, the app also contains sports betting options. While these products guide users to the key tasks, such as finding games or registering, some may find it difficult to find help or get in touch with the operator.

Players would be more supported with a direct way of getting in touch with the operator, as well as finding casino-specific information to resolve any issues.

coral mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino offers easy registration and onboarding features
  • Both web and apps versions offer relevant content and a good overview of the available games
  • Users can play in demo mode

Cons

  • The mobile casino has a busy layout, with some banners that are hard to read
  • The help section isn’t casino specific and contact details are hard to find
  • The mobile casino has a confusing lower navigation which takes users away from the casino

Recommendations

  • Optimise the homepage to focus on key games/ features and offer a more user friendly gaming experience
  • Streamline the navigation to keep users in the main casino section without diverting elsewhere unless necessary
  • Provide easier access to Help and offer support to users of all levels

Gala

Both Gala’s mobile casino website and apps have the same design and functionalities, which keeps them consistent and familiar for the users. Almost everything is within one tap, making the experience more efficient.
However, users may struggle with the navigation in the Help section which is quite an important area for many players.

One of the great elements is having Help always present at the bottom of the page/screen as the user scrolls through. However, the main Help page looks like a warning sign and users may not even understand what to do next. The Help page has a drop down menu to select the relevant query, but its
navigation is quite complex and not very intuitive.

gala mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino uses consistent navigation and
    different categorisation for browsing games
  • The app and web layout is clear, using the space to its advantage
  • Users are easily able to access Help when required

Cons

  • Users may struggle to navigate the Help section, find contact details or search for games due to inconsistencies in the UX
  • The registration form is long and dull with insufficient support

Recommendations

  • Improve the registration form to aid users during the sign up
  • Optimise the Help section and bring forward key areas that users may struggle with, including finding contact details
  • Focus on registration and displaying games in the most effective way

Ladbrokes

The Ladbrokes’ mobile casino offers a great selection of games and shows good use of displaying different features and elements. Both app and web versions are fairly consistent in terms of look and feel, offering a good experience for users of all levels. However, elements, such as Help or user account could be optimised further.

The app itself is a little slow, especially when users try to navigate between sections. It also tends to repeat the login process even after the user has logged in previously. Similarly to the mobile website, the account is split into different sections, which makes it slightly more complicated to navigate.

Ladbrokes mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino shows great use of highlighting different games, guiding users to play and offering demo versions
  • Both app and web versions support users by providing live chat, a clear registration process and game information
  • There is a clear consistency in design between the app and the web versions

Cons

  • The user account is split into different sections in the menu which makes it harder to navigate between them
  • The app tends to reload between different sections and repeats the login process, which slows users down

Recommendations

  • Optimise the Help section to be available
    for all users, offering relevant information to players of all levels
  • Make the UX of both web and app versions more consistent
  • Simplify the user account

Paddy Power

Paddy Power’s mobile casino website and apps are the same, using a clear layout and a straightforward user journey. The navigation is user friendly, so players are clear on where they can find everything. New users are
sufficiently supported, as they can play some games for free before joining and find further help if required.

However, it would help them if some game information was available as well. Overall, it’s fairly easy to understand how to use the website and play, however if users needed to find more specific information, they might need to spend some time looking for it.

paddy power mobile casino

Pros

  • The mobile casino shows great use of
    space to highlight games, guiding users to
    play and offering demo versions
  • Users are supported with casino specific Help content, accessible live chat and social media contact details
  • The registration form is simple and account information is displayed very clearly

Cons

  • The mobile casino lacks a search functionality and an option to view games by favourites or most
    recent
  • The registration form has some bugs
  • The app tends to reload between different sections, which slows down the navigation

Recommendations

  • Improve the app functionality to ensure all pages are loaded quickly with minimum errors
  • Work on the registration form to eliminate any
    bugs and help users complete it faster
  • Offer users to search games and browse them by a number of different parameters

Unibet

Unibet was the leader in our desktop Casino Lobby Review, however, its mobile web and app versions are quite different. The apps are much better optimised to provide an engaging gaming experience with a clear navigation and layout. The website needs more work on guiding users to their main objectives and supporting them if any issues arise.

The app supports users of different levels, offering information about jackpots and highest wins for regular players, as well as demo plays for novices. The Help in the web version is casino specific and offers some FAQs, however they are quite limited and don’t necessarily address the most common issues. The information provided isn’t always sufficient, so users may need to contact the operator for further help.

unibet mobile casino

Pros

  • The web offers users to browse games by a variety of categories and play demo versions
  • The apps are easy to use, have a clear layout
    and navigation, guiding users to the main
    features
  • The apps are very effective in getting new users to register, view account information and start playing

Cons

  • The web is cluttered and it’s hard to identify the key features
  • Help isn’t casino specific and it’s hard to find relevant information
  • Some key elements, such as Help or contact details are located outside of the apps

Recommendations

  • Bring more consistency between the web and apps, focusing on key user objectives and simple UX
  • Ensure the Help section is casino specific, supporting users of all levels
  • Ensure the web version guides users to the main tasks, e.g. registering or playing

To find out how these operators scored, please enter your details below.


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