Why Can’t We Be Friends? Online Casinos Would Complement Retail Casinos In Colorado

Written By Dan Holmes on 08/08/2023 - Last Updated on August 9, 2023
co online casino complement retail casino

Many states are debating legalizing online casinos, including Colorado. As of now, only retail casino gaming is legal in the state, but that could change in the near future if advocates get their way.

There are several reasons online casinos could benefit brick-and-mortar casinos. While online casino apps may seem like a natural competitor to retail casinos, it doesn’t have to be that way. Casinos in the cloud (as it were) can supplement and even complement the real-world casino gaming floors and all they have to offer.

Online casinos appeal to younger audiences

Online casino apps can build affinity for gaming and could even drive consumers to attend retail casinos in Colorado. That’s especially the case for young adults, who may have never considered visiting a retail casino as an entertainment option, but might after spending time on Colorado online casinos.

According to research by Gitnux, in 2022, 46% of online casino customers were between the age of 21 and 44. While the biggest age demographic was 45 to 54 (at 21%), the second largest was 35 to 44, and 10% of all players were under 24. That indicates tremendous potential for growth.

Colorado casinos don’t need to fear online casino apps: the two can co-exist in a thriving gaming industry. In many states, an online casino app may be required to partner with a retail casino to gain access to the market.

Practice with online casinos before visiting retail casinos

Many people feel anxious about gambling at retail casinos because they’re unfamiliar with the games and rules. No one wants to look foolish.

Online casinos allow players to learn a game in the comfort of their homes without peer pressure. Table games and even slots can be complicated unless you understand the rituals and customs of the game. Through trial and error, new players can play CO online poker and other games to train themselves on the rules.

Many online casino apps offer free play games. This allows users to play the games without having to bet real money, to learn and test strategies. Look for these games from your favorite gaming companies in Colorado.

Casino reward programs benefit players both online and at retail

Two of the most popular rewards programs in gaming are BetMGM and Golden Nugget. Those programs give their members perks that the average gambler cannot receive. Both the Golden Nugget and BetMGM programs extend to their online product, which means if you already belong to those rewards loyalty clubs, your points can usually be used either way: online or at the retail casino.

The BetMGM reward program offers points every time you play online or at one of its retail casinos that can be redeemed for complimentary food or beverages, entertainment, and even hotel stays. Whether you are playing on an online casino app or at a retail casino, responsible gambling should be at the forefront of every gambler’s mind.

Online casino apps aren’t hurting retail casinos elsewhere

There are six states with legal online casinos: Delaware, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. While online casinos are attracting consumers in those states, retail casinos are still flourishing. That’s not to say there won’t be an impact on retail casinos, but it’s certainly not the boogeyman.

In Michigan and Pennsylvania, both of which rank in the top ten in gaming revenue in the U.S., casinos across the state are still performing well. That’s likely because online casinos attract many new customers, as opposed to siphoning customers away from those who regularly visit casinos.

The type of person who enjoys flipping through an online casino app on their phone playing poker or slots is not necessarily the same person who enjoys going to a casino in their region. Often, a casino trip is a night out, a journey for entertainment in the real world, or maybe to add to a dinner or concert.

In Michigan, for example, casino revenue has grown since the state legalized online casino apps. As reported by PlayUSA, the same is true in Pennsylvania, which topped $164 million in gross revenue in June, an increase of 30% from 2022.

Across the U.S., states are learning that consumers enjoy legal online casinos where they can bet real money. Colorado sports betting apps have generated more than $400 million in revenue since they were legalized in 2020.

Earlier this year, Colorado’s Department of Revenue Executive Director, Mark Ferrandino, stated CO online casino legislation talks had started among some in the state. It may be only a matter of time before Coloradans can download and play online casino apps.

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Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes writes about sports betting, sports media, and sports betting legislative matters. He's the author of three books, and previously reported for Major League Baseball, as well as the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

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