What to look for when comparing online casinos
When you begin the journey of comparing online casinos you will realise that there are hundreds of casino sites out there. Online gamblers are truly spoilt for choice as there are casinos of every shape, size, and theme you could possibly think of and maybe, even a few you couldn’t!
This presents us with question:
What should a player look out for when comparing casino websites?
We have produced a list based on five criteria, in no particular order, and these are as follows:
1. Games selection
3. Player support
In this article, we will be talking you through this list in more depth and explaining how it can help you make the right decision when it comes to choosing your right casino!
1. Games selection
It’s pretty obvious but it bears repeating for emphasis – choose a casino that offers the type of gambling activities you enjoy. There’s no point heading to a slots-focussed site if you are only really interested in sports betting and vice versa.
There are a growing number of casino brands online that are trying to be all-rounders i.e. hosting slots, table games, live casino and sports betting on the same site and some have had better success than others.
Even if you like the look of an all-rounder casino, take some time to find out exactly what kind of games selection it offers. If you have a preference for the casino games created by a specific developers, find out if that casino hosts those titles.
Finding all this out is fairly simple and in most cases, you won’t even need to sign up for an account. Simply have a wander around the casino and take note of the categories on offer, roughly how many games or events (in the case of sports betting) are available, and get a feel for the general vibe of the casino.
Does it offer free play or demo mode on slots? Is the sports betting page easy to understand? What calibre of live casino games does the site host? If you are comparing two casinos directly, it might be handy to make a list of all these factors and take note of how each one performs.
This criterion may not be as important to some players as to others but we would argue that it will affect all players in one way or another.
For players who predominantly use a mobile device for gambling, this is a no brainer. A casino will appeal to this kind of player by having a fast-loading site and/or a responsive, carefully designed app. The selection of mobile-compatible casino games will be conveniently situated and should have a good number of titles.
If the casino in question performs very poorly in the mobile department, you may want to investigate further. While having a mobile site or app is by no means a prerequisite for being a good casino brand, it is well documented that more and more of worldwide web page views come through mobile devices. A casino who has not yet caught on to the importance of mobile risks being considered out of touch – not a good look for any brand hoping to make an impact in this day and age.
3. Player Support
“It’s better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it”. This old adage applies both to the extra pair of socks you pack on a rainy day and to player support at an online casino.
Most players will not need to contact a casino’s player support at any point. Their gameplay has been smooth from start to finish, they fully understand the terms and conditions, and their withdrawals have always been accepted instantly. Other players may not be so lucky and this is when a casino gets the chance to shine.
Most sites nowadays offer a live chat feature, often in addition to telephone and email assistance and all this information can be found on our online casino reviews. This makes it very easy for prospective players to get a feel for the type of customer service the site can offer. Ask a couple of questions about casino-related topics – bonuses, T&Cs, anything – and note how a) quick and b) helpful the response is.
At this point, we would like to reiterate what it is that customer support can actually help players with. Lost a grand after a few bad decisions on blackjack? Sorry, there is little anyone can do about that. If, on the other hand, a bonus you accepted is not paying out what it should, player support will be happy to help.
It’s also worth remembering that bad or threatening language will not fly when dealing with customer support. Even if you are frustrated and angry for whatever reason, there are zero excuses for poor behaviour and casinos take a very dim view of players who are abusive towards their employees. Keep it civil and you are likely to get the resolution needed and in a shorter time.
Another thing some casinos include that we appreciate is an FAQ section. These casino frequently asked questions and their answers can help players reach a solution without having to contact a support agent for help. This is definitely a plus in our books when we are comparing two online casinos.
Have you ever visited a really terribly made website? Of course. Everyone has. But can you name that website? Probably not. No one wants to revisit a confusing or chaotic site and so they rarely make the effort to remember which ones they are.
The same goes for online casinos. Thankfully, most brands today understand that before they are players, their customers are first and foremost internet users. A good website experience is crucial in helping players feel welcome and comfortable using a site. It’s important to remember that players of different experience levels will be using a casino, so it must provide an interface that is accessible to all.
When making your comparison, explore the casino sites in question. Wander around the different pages, check out the footer, delve into the games section and read reviews. Is it easy to find the terms and conditions? Do you find that, after several minutes of searching, you still have no idea where the casino is licensed? Can you find the games you’re looking for easily? These are all questions we ask ourselves when writing our casino reviews and they can help you decide if a casino is up to scratch.
We have left this bit till last because it is the most important. Casinos can only offer their online services to players if they hold an operating license. There are several licensing bodies out there and casinos can be licensed by two or more at a time. I
A casino’s operating license will determine where geographically, it can market its products and offer it to the public. For example, a license from the UK Gambling Commission allows a casino to cater to players in the United Kingdom.
Licensing is also an important indicator of security and ethical practice. Licensing authorities impose rules on license holders and breaking those rules will result in sanctions or even the suspension of the licence. These rules are aimed at protecting players from fraudulent practices, unethical advertising and the threat of problem gambling.
Choosing the right casino will entail making sure that it is legally allowed to serve players in your region and that it is obligated to adhere to high player protection standards. The two benchmark licensing bodies at the moment are the UKGC and the Malta Gaming Authority. A casino holding one or both of these European licenses is likely to be a safe bet.
As you may have realised, choosing a casino is equal parts hard evidence and gut feeling or personal preference. Comparing casinos can seem like a tedious job but it does give a player a very clear picture of what they can expect from a brand. It also helps them hone their skills so that it is easier to sort the wheat from the chaff next time. It’s important for players to do their research into such topics as how to spot rogue casinos, how to draw a line with gambling etc i order to stay safe online and make the most of the fun experience.
We know that there is an element of subjectivity, a matter of opinion when it comes to one casino over another. The RightCasino reviews are a good place to start, giving you all the important info you need to make an informed choice.