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Player reactivation: simple steps to get your clients back

Ayvar Gabidullin
October 12, 2023
12 min

“It’s cheaper to keep players than acquire new ones” is heard from every direction. And as usual, it’s easier said than done. Read this article to learn more about player reactivation and how Slotegrator can help online casinos to optimize their strategy and minimize their costs.

Player loyalty is hard to earn.

Today’s players prefer to have accounts on several different platforms at the same time, their lifetime on each platform is shorter than ever before, and their game sessions are quicker. Players have a wide choice of gaming content and an interest in trying everything available to them, which means they will — inevitably— churn.

Churn rate [tʃɝːn reɪt] is the percentage of people who used a company’s services for a period of time but stopped doing so in a given time period. This measure can also reflect the number of employees quitting their jobs after a certain period of time, but in our case, this is the number of players who used to play on a platform but haven’t made any bet recently (last month, last three weeks, etc.)— basically, churn rate is the opposite of retention.

Every gambling site aims to prevent churn. With the help of existing techniques and CRM-strategies, you can keep your customers active and significantly reduce the churn rate. There are two numbers to keep in mind regarding a business’ churn: customer churn rate and revenue churn rate. Here is the customer churn rate formula:

A/B*100 = customer churn rate (where A is a number of players that have left over a given period of time, and B is a number of players at the beginning of the period).

Some companies prefer to focus on the revenue that could have been obtained had their users not left. The formula for calculating the revenue churn rate looks like this:

A * B * C = revenue churn rate (where A is a number of inactive players over a given period of time, B is an average payment, and C is an average number of payments over a given period of time).

Statistics show that if a gambling company increases the retention rate by at least 5%, its profit can grow by up to 95%. It is worth noting that many marketers believe that reducing the churn rate should be a priority in any company, regardless of its activity.

Some gambling operators focus on attracting new players and improving their offer to target new player segments. In general, 20% of the player base generates 80% of profit; this relation demonstrates how important it is to work with existing players, not only newly acquired ones. To fix the issue of inactive users, operators study problems they might face on their way, and to do that, they create and analyze the player journey.

Player journey [ˈpleɪər ˈdʒɜːrnɪ] is the path that platform users take from the moment they see the brand for the first time to the moment they leave after using its services. Player journey includes registration, every contact with a platform, deposits, game and currency choice, playing, withdrawing winnings, etc. Every step of the journey should ideally be engaging and smooth, as any delay or mistake can lead to disappointment.

Why players churn

Players can churn at any point in their journey. Some issues can discourage a user from the beginning of their experience on the platform, while others manifest themselves after weeks of playing. Understanding what is causing the churn allows operators to plan a win-back strategy or fix the issue to avoid losing players at all.

Below is a list of the most common issues known to cause churn in online casinos.

Technical issues

Registration or verification failure

Any technical issues with the sign-up or verification processes can be disastrous for your business. Whether it's a faulty registration form or a problem with uploading identification documents, you risk losing customers right at the beginning of their life cycle. What's worse, if players cannot easily withdraw their funds due to technical issues in the casino's verification process, you'll have quite a fire to put out.

Payment system failure

This is the most sensitive part of the whole experience on a gambling platform. If a player wants to withdraw and the transaction is not completed promptly, they have a solid reason to leave right away.

Gaming experience

Your competitors have better offers and bonuses

The iGaming industry is growing and developing very fast, and it is one of the most competitive industries around. For this reason, each iGaming company tries to stand out with sign-up bonuses, special offers, and marketing tools such as jackpots, tournaments, and free spins. It's hard to imagine that an online casino could be successful in this market without offering any boon.

You don’t offer enough games

Top brands have a vast offer and years of experience in the market, making them hard to compete against. Their offer is based on experience and the analysis of players' preferences. Newer operators do not have this experience to rely on, which is why they have to provide the broadest possible range of gaming content. By allowing players the freedom to choose, operators can gather intelligence to hone their offer. We recommend you to pick different types of games, including live dealer games, slots, table games, esports, and provably fair games.

The games offered don’t respond to market demands

If your online casino offers a mix of classic and modern games with lots of features and attractive bonuses, you're on the right path. If your catalog doesn't contain what the market you operate in is looking for, however, you'll have a hard time retaining players. To avoid this, choose your providers carefully and analyze the market in depth.

Your catalog isn’t updated regularly

You can have the most comprehensive and innovative catalog, devised specifically for your market, but that doesn't mean you're set for good. Players get tired of games and love to try new releases. If, after some time playing, they do not see any updates to your offer, they're most likely to churn.

User experience

Poor player support

Customer service is arguably the most crucial department in your company. Interacting directly with the players, it's tasked with solving problems and making clients feel they are taken care of. Support is there to make everything smooth and quick, to let customers know that it is safe to stay and fun to come back. If this service is slow, impolite, ineffective, or unprofessional, your players will leave.

Progress bar is a new feature in a turnkey platform from Slotegrator — this widget allows players to view their history, demonstrating all their wins, opportunities, key indicators, and achievements, acting as a self-motivation tool. The widget can be placed at the header, sidebar, or any page of the online casino enabling constant tracking of the progress.

Inadequate search and navigation tool

Ease of browsing is essential: players shouldn't be forced to scroll endlessly to find the game they are looking for. It's best to provide a clear layout and tools like a navigation bar or a search box.

Wrong bonus calculation

If you promise players a bonus, it should be properly calculated and paid out on time. If players don’t get what they were promised, they churn, and the chances to get them back are very low.

Our turnkey platform solution is constantly updated. One of the latest additions is a wheel of fortune — a wheel divided into sectors with different kinds of prizes that players can win, following the classic roulette-style mechanism. Contact us to learn more about this and other modules of our online casino platform.

Poor currency and language support

Ideally, you want to allow players to use their currency of choice, or at the very least that of the market they reside in.Cryptocurrency is a must today — over 420 million people own cryptocurrency worldwide, and 71.4% of our clients believe that crypto adoption will grow in the next few years. The same is true for language support: if users don't understand the product or its terms and conditions, they're more likely to churn in favor of other platforms that better meet their needs.

How to prevent high churn rates

Both preventing churn and reactivating players require the involvement of several departments at the same time.

You might want to dedicate a special team to find weak spots and work on them, but when it comes to player journey, a number of teams will invariably be involved. At minimum, you’ll look at player support (and their procedures for handling complaints), marketing (and their email and SMS campaigns), VIP support (and their personalized approach), security (and their strict but smooth anti-fraud checks) to make sure every point of the player journey is compliant, transparent, smooth, and fun.

Determine the reason

To prevent client loss, start by identifying the primary triggers. You’ll want to communicate with your customers to understand which parts of the product need to be changed or improved.

Offer a wide range of games

Any online casino should provide a wide range of games and add titles that are popular in your market, keep up with your providers' scheduled releases and diversify your offer as much as possible. This retention effort helps to reduce the churn rate.

Maintain a proactive approach

You have to learn to look ahead, predict possible issues your players might encounter, and find solutions before they turn into a problem. Answer your players' questions before they ask them and communicate with them efficiently, announcing the latest updates, features, and product improvements – any interaction will increase your brand awareness.

Stand out from your competition

Understand what makes your product unique and take it to the next level. You can add live dealer games to your catalog, run tournaments, offer great bonuses, or create a loyalty program.

The Artificial BI module of our online casino platform is essential for a successful gambling project operation — use it to collect data from your platform, analyze player behavior, define your weaknesses and strengths, and plan your decisions accordingly. Artificial intelligence allowed us to develop a feature that takes casinos on a different level of strategic planning: it enables anonymous and confidential comparison of your metrics with metrics of your competitors in the same niche and region. Learn more about this and other moduleshere.

How to reactivate churn players

Before reapproaching the players, operators should think about the effort needed and the likely results. Is it worth it? Your reacquisition plan will come with costs, and its effectiveness will largely depend on the quality of the planning. Before implementing a reacquisition strategy, operators should ask a few questions:

  • How high are the chances that a player will return?
  • How long will the player remain for after their return?
  • Will the player be profitable enough to be worth the attempt?

These questions require some guesswork, but they are essential nonetheless. The first two can be answered considering the reasons why players churned. This is where your analysis comes in handy: if, for example, players left the platform because of a lack of exciting games, you can safely assume that they might return and stick around if you can offer them a more extensive and diverse choice. If, on the other hand, the player has left because another casino offered better bonuses, then they will be tricky to retain going forward without continuous incentives. In this case, your reacquisition efforts might not be worth it in the long term.

Remember that reactivated players will also have to go through a retention process, so getting a player back to the platform is only the first step. You don’t want to invest time and effort in winning back a customer that you won’t be able to retain.

Next, consider how profitable this player will be. While it's impossible to be entirely accurate, you can come up with an estimate based on the player's previous experience on the platform. Will the player be profitable enough to warrant your reacquisition efforts?

Once you have identified the fraction of players lost to the churn who are likely to come back to your online casino, stick around, and play enough to be profitable, it’s time to devise an attractive win-back strategy.

There are several ways to get players’ attention back:

  • Find out what communication channels your players prefer and contact them the way they like it, whether it’s email, phone call, or Whatsapp message.
  • Design a good email marketing strategy to remind them about yourself. This may include messages triggered by some action (registration, deposit, withdrawal), events (football match, player birthday, tournament), or time (one week no playing, one month no playing).
  • Add new games, bonuses, payment methods, or features to your platform and inform your churned players about all the news — let them know that you fixed or improved things they didn’t like.
  • Create personalized offers based on data collected on your platform and have dedicated account managers for VIP players.
  • Try new marketing channels — your re-acquisition strategy might be more effective if you rethink how and where to find your target audience.

How can Slotegrator help

Slotegrator has over 10 years of expertise in player support and online casino operation optimization. We see what difficulties gambling operators face and develop products and solutions that would help them deal with them.

Ourturnkey online casino platform has everything you need to efficiently collect, store, and analyze data about player’s behavior and history at every stage of the player journey. The Artificial BI module enables you to anonymously compare your project’s key metrics with those of your competitors so you can better understand your performance.

Our bonus module allows you to set, adjust, and schedule marketing campaigns according to your goals and based on player segmentation. This is a great tool to attract, retain, and reactivate users, offering them what they will like.

We can find a solution for every stage of your player journey, and a free consultation from our specialists will help you start your journey to bigger revenues.

Ayvar Gabidullin
Ayvar Gabidullin
Business Development Manager
Ayvar has over five years of experience managing B2B and B2C sales departments in the online gambling industry. He started his career working in customer support for online casinos and grew to become the head of a department offering tailored services to VIP players. He joined Slotegrator with a strong focus on our company’s products and deep knowledge of what players need. His passion for the industry leads him to keep expanding his knowledge every day.

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