The rise of online and mobile betting throughout sub-Saharan Africa in recent years has been remarkable. It can, in part, be attributed to greater access to the internet from smartphones for millions of people in countries that already have a rich culture of following sports and sports betting.
Countries such as Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa, to name just three, have seen a marked increase in traffic to online betting sites in recent years, and current figures are projecting a continuous rise.
International operators beginning to stake their claim
In short, it’s easy to see a split in the current online betting landscape in such countries between two types of online bookmakers. Firstly native betting sites which limit themselves to offering betting services limited to citizens within their own country of operation, and secondly, the international operators.
At present international operators, to varying degrees, are seeking to tailor their services to each market to compete with native bookmakers. Perhaps one of the most specialized and readily adaptable operators is Betway, who are already offering a number of specialized services to African markets, in contrast to rival operators such as bet365 or Betfair.
The challenge of nascent markets
Eskil Kvarnström, CEO of Leadstar Media notes,
The biggest challenge for affiliates in newer and developing markets such as Africa is striking the right balance between providing worthwhile information on the core principles of online betting, whilst also ensuring that content remains localised and relevant to each particular country.
For example, if you take one of our main sites geared to the African market, BetBlazers.com, we seek to provide a variety of useful information for potential players.
On BetBlazers our Kenyan betting sites page aims to pinpoint what online bookmakers are available to Kenyan players and to rate them accordingly, but also to provide key information on deposit methods and sites that offer deposits in their native currencies. This is something we’ve replicated in Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana and will continue to do so as we look to other markets.
Understanding local needs, necessities and impediments
Indeed understanding the key fundamentals is the challenge for any online bookmaker or betting affiliate seeking to connect with a new and growing market, particularly in Africa.
Sites like BetBlazers.com, as noted by Kvarnström, have aimed to strike the right balance between informing players on such things as viable deposit methods, the importance of deposits in native currencies, as well as how welcome offers and bonuses work in practice.
Kvarnström says that
The key is to remember that not everyone who is interested in betting online may be familiar with how it actually works, how they can actively participate, or even if they can trust online betting sites. These are features particular to newer markets.
Affiliates like Leadstar Media, who operate sites like BetBlazers, have placed particular importance on providing concise information and localized content to maximize user experience and awareness.
Not only do they review the best bookmakers in each particular country, but they also seek to enforce the trustworthiness of international operators in new markets. Subjects such as available deposit methods, walkthrough guides on how to deposit and withdraw from betting accounts, as well as how to make an educated decision on how and where African players should look to get the best for their online betting experience all come into consideration.
We value the members of our African community greatly and will continue to provide a unique, informative and localised service that we aim to constantly improve so our visitors get the best betting experience possible.