The notion of jackpot is inseparably connected with games of chance. Any gambler dreams of winning. However, what is a jackpot for an online casino? How to use it in the most effective way possible? What types of jackpots are there? How do they function and what is the return on investment? You may find the answers to some of these questions in the review prepared by Slotegrator.

What is a jackpot

Jackpot is a poker notion introduced in the United States in 1880-1885. This notion was coined from two different words such as “jack” and “pot”. According to old poker rules, the amount of wins doubles if one of the gamblers gets less than two jacks. If in the current game the gambler doesn’t get two jacks in a row, the prize fund is partially transferred to the next game. However, sooner or later the necessary combination appears and the lucky winner gets the jackpot and the new prize fund starts forming all over again. That’s why the notion of jackpot served to denominate stacking of poker bets in a pot.

Nevertheless, games of chance evolved continuously and within time the majority of gambling notions obtained new broader meanings. Nowadays “jackpot” as a notion is used to define big winners’ pots in slots, lotteries, roulette and the rest of games of chance. A jackpot is the maximum cash prize a winner can get. To hit the jackpot means to win the whole amount of the prize fund. There are different types of jackpots categorized according to rules and conditions of each individual poker game. Basically, it is calculated as a certain percentage out of all losses and bets. Let’s discuss in greater detail what jackpot in contemporary gambling is.

Jackpot in different games of chance

Jackpots in lotteries

It seems that nowadays almost every lottery has a jackpot and every participant dreams of hitting a huge one. Of course, the most popular lotteries are the ones broadcasted on TV. Such TV lotteries inform in advance about the maximum amount of a jackpot. This predetermines the amount of lottery tickets and participants accordingly. That’s why a significant jackpot is not only a chance for a gambler to become filthy rich in a day, but also turns out to be an effective marketing tool for the lottery provider.

Jackpots in slots

In slots jackpots are made of certain percentage charged from each player’s bet. This percentage is insignificant, however due to the big number of bets placed by gamblers, especially in online casinos, jackpots turn out to be big.

Jackpots in card games

According to statistical data, big jackpots are usually given out in slots and lotteries, however, the rules of some card games also provide certain conditions of getting a significant money prize. The most popular jackpots are those of video poker. But such games as Caribbean poker or black jack also provide jackpot rewards for gamblers.

Jackpots in roulette

Jackpots are also widely spread in roulette games. The typical ones are European, French or American roulette versions. Despite of the fact that online casino content developers tend to be quite conservative when it comes to games, they always try to create advanced versions of already existing popular games providing them with jackpots. Currently, availability of jackpots in a game seems to be its main attraction and online casinos frequently make use of jackpots in order to attract more gamblers. However, in order to make this marketing tool work properly and effectively, it is necessary to compile clear rules to facilitate gambling for future casino visitors. Let’s take a closer look at different types of jackpots currently used in gambling.

Types of jackpots


A fixed jackpot is an invariable amount of money that a gambler can win in a game. This amount doesn’t depend upon the number of bets placed by gamblers nor the amount of lottery tickets sold. In order to get such a jackpot one should meet certain conditions, for instance: you have to collect a line of similar images.


Progressive or cumulative jackpots are the most popular in contemporary gambling. The progressive jackpot principle of functioning is quite easy. A certain percentage is charged from each bet or lottery ticket and transferred to the prize fund. If no one gets a chance to form a winning combination the jackpot is transferred to the next game. Sometimes providers impose certain conditions, for instance, jackpots are available only for those who place maximum bets only. However, the jackpot is made of percentage charged from all bets regardless of their amount. As soon as someone hits the jackpot, formation of the prize fund starts again.

Mystery jackpot

The trick about this jackpot is that gamblers do not know for sure when they get it and what the amount is. Mystery jackpots have minimum and maximum rates, so that the exact amount varies.

In order to win it, one doesn’t have to comply with certain requirements, for instance collect lines of similar images or guess numbers. The final winner is determined randomly, as soon as the jackpot reaches a certain amount or rate.

Double Trigger

This jackpot presupposes an additional bonus game and provides a possibility of getting a super prize. The super prize directly depends upon the bet rate. The higher the bet is, the higher is the possibility to win, while low bets can deter you from getting a jackpot at all. Notice also that the amount of the jackpot is practically unknown to the gambler.

Door Prize

Usually it is granted to a random visitor of the gambling house. For instance, to a gambler number 3000 or 10000. Moreover, this is a fixed jackpot.

Announcement of the winner

Contemporary gambling combines different systems designed specifically to determine jackpot winners. According to experts from Slotegrator, there are two approaches to determine jackpot winners:

  1. A jackpot granting system based on certain conditions. For instance, jackpots are granted only to those gamblers who collected a certain combination of symbols, numbers on the slot reels or card combinations, or showed significant results during the bonus round. This jackpot granting system gives away wins provided that all rules and conditions are fulfilled.
  2. A jackpot granting system based on numbers. This system is used when a certain percentage is charged from all bets and automatically transferred to the prize fund. Announcement of the final winner is executed in one of the following ways:
    • Range type. Amount of the jackpot is determined by the general pace of the game. The prize fund is formed from bets and then is compared to the range set by the system;
    • Numeric type. The amount exceeds an integral number;
    • Random type. Random number generator is used.

Methods for determining the player who won the jackpot

Payoff of wins

Payments are executed by entities owning the prize fund. In case with online gambling prize funds are owned either by providers or online casino operators. Let’s discuss in greater detail the difference between them.


The biggest progressive jackpots are stored in a system called Area Wide owned by the provider. A big number of online casinos use gaming software of one and the same provider. Due to a special function embedded in the game itself, all online casinos make up a unified network. That’s why gamblers from all online casinos pay a certain amount from each spin that eventually forms a progressive jackpot. The main advantage of this system is that the main responsibility for formation of the progressive jackpot is on independent provider, while money are transferred to the general prize fund even from competitive online casinos. Due to this fact jackpots may reach several million dollars each.


Gambling houses can also form jackpots according to “In-House” principle. Casino operators follow the same principle of progressive jackpot formation, as providers do. The difference is in that the prize fund is managed by a certain gambling house and is formed, for instance, based on one of a couple of gambling slots presented on this very online platform. Sometimes such jackpots can be formed within participation of other partner casinos, in this case the prize fund will only increase.

How to form a jackpot

The prize fund is formed based on gamblers’ bets or revenues from ticket sales. Each operator distributes funds in its own manner. However, usually the main share of the total prize fund is divided into smaller wins and prizes, while the other share is given away as a jackpot. It should be taken into account that the majority of jurisdictions require high percentage of wins. Usually this percentage fluctuates on the level of 75%, while serious gambling houses keep this index even higher.

Percentage of payoffs in jackpots

The majority of users nowadays are questioning the reliability of online casinos in terms of timely payoffs, especially when it comes to jackpots of a significant scale. Experienced gamblers are making thorough researches regarding the statistics of payoffs of any casino they plan gambling at. The percentage of payoffs in the majority of land-based casinos is substantially higher than the required minimum. As a rule it accounts for 90-94 %, while in online casinos it’s even higher- up to 98%. This index is very important for business competitiveness. As long as competition online is higher, gambling houses do not want to seem greedy. Moreover, it is also known that professional gamblers do not gamble at casinos with payoffs lower than 96-98%.

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Jackpot Payouts to Players

Jackpots can be paid in several ways. The most common are the following:

  • Part payment. This kind of payment is often practiced in lotteries. For example, in the USA, known for its big lottery winnings. The winners choose whether they want to receive the money in a form of relatively small annual payments or they want to collect the entire jackpot in cash. In the second case, the prize amount is significantly reduced.
  • Offer to play other gambling on the site. Today, many online casinos offer their winners special offers, bonuses and additional games. In such programs you can win valuable prizes - from a gadget to a car or significantly increase your winnings. This type of offer is used in cases when the money won in the jackpot remains virtual - it can not be cashed out and can be used for virtual gaming only.
  • Limited payments. Additionally, an online casino can set a limit on winnings. And no matter how successful the player might be in a game, for example, in roulette - he can not win and get more than the online casino is ready to offer.

Jackpot as a marketing tool

It’s plain to see that gamblers have extremely low chances of winning a jackpot, while they can lose a lot while gambling. However, a lot of users are gambling in online casinos hoping to gain a big jackpot and totally change the lifestyle.

The second psychological feature of gambler’s perception of a jackpot is importance of winning. For the majority of gamblers money is less important than the victory. Sometimes winners spend more money than they actually win. Many users follow the example of winners and a jackpot seems to be a powerful psychological motivation for devoted gamblers. Such psychological orientation of users turns out to be very profitable for casinos. Jackpots themselves are amazing advertising campaigns for the majority of gambling websites. Another effective way to attract new gamblers is to post “stories of success”. But the most powerful advertisement is the total amount of jackpot. Technically, progressive jackpots are unlimited reaching incredible amounts. Moreover, the minimum amount of a jackpot in a respectable casino accounts for $1 million. Operators do everything possible to make the main prize stay within the eyesight of gamblers. It may be seen on the jackpot meter, located not only on the online casino webpage, but on banners too. In order to catch the eye such banners are extremely colorful.

Jackpot pay-back

Of course, all operators know that jackpots quickly pay off, as well as other effective tools for online casino advertising. For example, most of the winnings on a typical slot machine are for small payouts, and not for the jackpot at all.

But even the opportunity to win a jackpot of $ 30 thousand is attractive enough to retain big numbers of visitors to the gambling house willing to play for money. Perhaps one of them will be lucky.

Income tax

In many countries, casinos adhere to the following principle: the more a player spends money on a game, the lower his taxes on winnings are. Thus, regular customers of casinos avoid paying taxes. Basically, the smallest winnings are not subject to taxation, however, you might be forced to pay taxes only if your winnings account for thousand dollars or more. On the other hand, there are countries where there are no benefits for players, and all the winnings are taxed.

Taxation systems have their own peculiarities in every state. For example, in France, players pay 10% out of each bet, and in Greece, players are completely exempt from tax, provided they win less than 100 euros.

The same situation occurs with winnings in the lottery. For example, the highest taxes on winnings are paid in the US. The minimum federal tax accounts for 25% followed by additional state taxes. And if the winner desires to receive the whole amount of wins in cash – the amount is reduced by 55-60%.

In European countries, the whole approach to taxation on lottery wins is different. For example, in England, Germany and Finland, the jackpot is not taxed. In Italy, the tax is 6% out of the amount of the winnings exceeding 500 euros and 20% out of the sum exceeding 2.5 thousand euros. In Bulgaria, lottery wins taxes account for 10%, and in the Czech Republic – 20%.

In Australia lottery wins taxations is not provided at all.


Operators gain benefits for providing jackpots in their online casinos. In order to hit a jackpot gamblers risk greatly placing almost everything at stake. Sometimes casinos offer to bet on jackpots in order to earn additional money. That’s why online casino owners and operators should definitely use this effective tool.

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