The latest annual survey on the state of the online gambling market in the Netherlands revealed signs of market maturation. However, there has been only minimal improvement in public recognition of the legal market.
The number of gamblers is on the rise, while the percentage of problem gamblers remains steady
The latest edition of the Netherlands Online Gambling Association (NOGA) Online Gaming Barometer, an annual report conducted by IPSOS, indicates early signs of maturity in the local online gambling market.
According to the consumer survey, a growing number of Dutch people are now engaging in online gambling compared to two years ago. Additionally, the percentage of individuals using unlicensed gambling providers has decreased, with 94% now opting for the safer and more responsible environment provided by licensed operators.
The report also highlights that 14% of the adult population in the country participates in online gambling, up from 11% in the previous survey. Most online players are men or young adults, and the proportion of young players has increased from 21% in 2022 to 30% in the latest findings.
The frequency of online play has also increased, attributed to players’ preference for gambling via their smartphones, with online sports betting and online casinos being the preferred verticals.
The rise in the number of young players has contributed to an increase in the proportion of young adults classified as risk gamblers, rising from 8% to 14%. Researchers suggest that this trend may continue alongside market growth, emphasizing the responsibility of gambling providers to address and mitigate this increase.
Despite the growing number of gamblers and risk gamblers among young adults, the overall share of risk gambling in the country has not increased significantly, with the majority of players acknowledging gambling addiction as a major risk.
The survey indicates that the Dutch population expects gambling providers to play a significant role in preventing gambling harm, with nearly 9 out of 10 respondents anticipating that these companies provide information about the risks associated with online gambling.
In terms of advertising, the report reveals that fewer participants have encountered gambling advertisements over the past year, demonstrating positive results for the industry’s self-regulatory approach to advertising. However, one area that presents a challenge is the public’s recognition of legal gambling providers, which has shown minimal improvement since the legalization of online gambling in October 2021. More than two-thirds of players are unable to differentiate between licensed operators and offshore providers.
Peter-Paul de Goeij, director of NOGA, emphasized the importance of improving public recognition of legal providers, especially in light of the upcoming advertising ban. He stressed the need to collaborate with the government to enhance the safety of the licensed offering and better protect online gamblers while ensuring its attractiveness to deter illegal activities.