Bingo is a game rooted in British culture, with the generations before us regularly attending bingo halls up and down the UK. Though those establishments are much rarer than they used to be, bingo is seeing a surprising resurgence in the digital world.
There are now countless online offerings of bingo games with various ways to win cash prizes. If you’re wondering where you can find the best bonuses, check out this guide.
The origins of the game are actually quite hard to pin down, but the roots of its form can be traced back to Italy in the 16th Century. It wasn’t until the 18th Century that the pastime made its way to the UK, but even then it still wasn’t known as bingo.
It took that name during the 1920s when the game was popularised at fairs and carnivals, but a change in gambling laws in 1961 saw bingo become a widespread phenomenon across the UK.
Online Bingo Games
Since 2005, however, hundreds of bingo halls in the UK have closed as gambling taxes have risen and more people moved to online gaming.
While it may have seemed the game was dying a slow death, it’s seen a surprising rise in popularity in recent years, particularly among young people. Recent surveys have shown that 1 in 5 millennials play bingo at least once a week, and roughly the same portion play at least once a month.
In fact, bingo is producing huge sums of revenue on these shores. Between April 2019 and March 2020, bingo outlets – both online and offline – generated a Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) of roughly £910m.
Further still, studies in 2016 highlighted that more people in the UK take part in bingo than they do tennis. According to the report, 1.7m people played tennis compared to 1.9m who regularly played bingo.
So, why the recent bingo revival? The main reason is, unsurprisingly, the internet. Online bingo is far more accessible than bingo halls as you can take part from the comfort of your own home and it’s easy to dip in and out of games.
Bingo has shared the success of online gambling and casinos and is often packaged alongside them, exposing the game to a much wider audience.
Online gaming has also developed into mobile gaming, meaning people can play bingo from their phone. You no longer need to be sitting at your computer to play bingo; you can take part on the go or from anywhere you’ve got your phone and an internet connection.
It’s estimated that 75% of UK online gamblers aged between 18 and 34 used their smartphones to place wagers. This figure accounts for online gambling as a whole, including casino games, sports betting and bingo.
This rise in accessibility has led to an increase in competition inside the bingo market, with more suppliers offering bingo games than ever before. Players can browse through these platforms and choose the games and suppliers which appeal to them the most, making the prospect of bingo much more appealing.
This choice gives more power to the consumer and creates a higher chance of them having a positive experience and becoming a returning customer.
A competitive market also means the suppliers need to work even harder to attract players, which results in bonuses and special offers being made available. These usually come in the form of things like free games or deposits into your virtual wallet and are traditionally aimed at new customers.
These incentives to make extra profit from playing bingo naturally help the game grow in popularity as more people see it as an engaging way of making money.
The technology involved in online bingo also allows for a more enveloping experience as opposed to a regular bingo hall. Added features that make small tweaks to gameplay and keep the game fresh help maintain engagement.
Many suppliers have also implemented a chat feature into their bingo games, meaning players can communicate with one another while playing. This helps create a sense of community among those involved and adds more value to their experience.
So, for those who are more attracted to the social and enjoyment aspects of bingo, there are unique ways to replicate that community spirit found in most bingo halls.
Bingo has managed to adapt to the times and is now very much part of the digital world, meaning a much larger audience is aware of it and has access to it. From there, the game is a pretty easy sell; it’s predominantly luck-based and isn’t too intensive, plus there’s the irresistible thrill of marking out a full bingo card.
In fact, brick-and-mortar bingo halls are reporting increases in the amount of people regularly attending games, particularly from younger demographics.
So, whether it’s online or in person at bingo halls, the simple game is experiencing an intense Indian summer. Regular player numbers are steadily rising given how accessible bingo is online, and there are dozens of suppliers offering different games and bonuses, meaning there is something for everyone.