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Mar 22, 2020

The Impact of Coronavirus on the Gambling Industry in Search

Link building in the gambling industry has never been as important as it is it the current time.
 
Furthermore, there has never been a better time get your iGaming link building right.
 
Covid-19 has caused international chaos, both on the health front, but on the economic front too. It’s a pandemic that has had devastating impacts on lives, and many businesses around the world could never have envisaged the utter turmoil it has caused.
 
As a specialist iGaming link building agency, we thought it would be good to show the impact of the Coronavirus on search behaviour in the online gambling industry.
 
The data below shows how gambling industry link building perhaps could, and should shift, during the Covid-19 pandemic that we’re currently facing.
 
NB: All data in this article, relates to the periods mentioned, prior to the date of writing – 23rd March 2019.
 
Taking the topic ‘Online Casino’ and looking at Google Trend data over the past 30 days, it has remained fairly stable:
 
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However, since the pandemic has really begun to set in over the past 5 days, with businesses closing and countries going into lockdown, searches around the topic of online casino have seen an upward trend:
 
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The incremental increase may be somewhat marginal, but nevertheless, there is certainly a pattern there.
 
However, the same marginal increase cannot be said for online poker related terms. If we take a look at the data for Google searches around the topic ‘Online Poker’, the trend is remarkably different. Rewinding back to the end of December, when Covid-19 wasn’t the household term it is now, and wasn’t causing the devastation we’re seeing today – searches around ‘Online Poker’ remained fairly constant. However, since the world has gone into isolation and lockdown to varying degrees, the surge in these types of searches have been somewhat staggering:
 
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And when we look at it over the past 30 days, the curve is sharper still:
 
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In a nutshell, searches for topics around ‘Online Poker’ have seen a sudden surge, to the extent they’ve seen almost a 400% increase in search volume over the last 30 days – quite a staggering statistic.
 
Furthermore, the same can be said about searches relating to ‘Online Bingo’. In fact, search volume around this term has seen an increase of over 400% in the last 30 days alone:
 
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These sharp increases in online poker and online bingo related searches coincide with the worsening of the Covid-19 pandemic. It’s no coincidence that as the situation worsens, and more and more people are forced into taking residence in their own homes – there is an incremental increase surrounding these online gambling related topics.
 
As we approach a stage in the pandemic where almost all major sporting events are being cancelled or postponed, less and less people are searching for terms around this. As an example, here is the Google Trends data for the past 30 days, on searches around the topic, ‘Sports Betting’:
 
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It has taken a massive nosedive, with there now only around 35% of people searching around this topic, in comparison to 30 days ago, on 23rd February.
 
So, what does this mean for online gambling companies and affiliates? It certainly presents a real opportunity for those who operate in the games, casino, poker or bingo space – or indeed those who wish to shift their strategy towards these areas. There are more searches, arguably than ever before, for topics around online bingo and online poker. As people are being forced to stay in their homes, it is clear that there is a large chunk of the population who are looking to entertain themselves with these particular products that the iGaming space has to offer.
 
As such, link building in the iGaming space should change. We wrote previously about how gambling industry link building is different, but the Covid-19 outbreak could possibly force gaming operators and affiliates to change their tact.
 
If we take, as an example, the site that currently ranks in position 1 (at the time of writing) for the search term, ‘best online bingo sites’, Bingo Views – and plum their landing page for this the aforementioned search term into Ahrefs, we get the following data relating to organic search:
 
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Organic traffic to this page has almost doubled over the past 25 days or so – likely as a result of the significant increase in searches around this term. 
 
Likewise, if we analyse the organic search data from Ahrefs for the top rated site in Google, for the search term, ‘play poker online’ – Party Poker – we can see that organic traffic to the page that ranks for this term has also shot up:
 
Picture8
 
It may not be as clear on this graph as the bingo one above, but according to Ahrefs data, organic visitors to this page have increased from around the 143k mark each day, to over 165k a day– an uplift of 22,000 visitors each and every day to this page. 
 
Of course, Ahrefs data isn’t entirely accurate – nothing is, unless we had Google Analytics data. But it gives a good idea.
 
And it also shows us the extent to which the opportunity lies. By using link building to rank better for these types of terms, and doing it properly, and in the right way, the increase in search volumes that these topics are seeing equates to an incredible amount of additional traffic.
 
As we said right at the very start - link building in the gambling industry has never been more important, and furthermore, there has never been a more important to get your iGaming link building strategy right.
 
As a specialist gambling link building agency, we have helped numerous clients with building links in this very complex niche – right through from consultation, to strategy, to implementation. The world is changing, and so should the approach for gaming companies.
 

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