The Ontario market has been a popular topic of conversation within the igaming industry since the Canadian province chose to regulate sports betting and online casino in 2022. Since then, we’ve seen swathes of operators and suppliers alike flood into the market in the hope of getting in on the action.

But with so many stakeholders active in Ontario, what can casino and slot companies do to stand out from the competition? Christoffer Ødegården, Head of the Casino at Bojoko, shares his views on engagement and retention strategies used by igaming operators as well as the importance of responsible gambling tools for players.

CasinoBeats: What do you believe is the most important factor for a new slot site to stand out in Canada?

: While there are several aspects to consider, offering attractive bonuses and promotions, providing a diverse range of convenient payment methods, and ensuring a seamless user experience are paramount. 

We do vigorous analysis of what casinos convert on our platform, and what pages these conversions come from, and you might be surprised by how easy it is to stand out in the Canadian market. 

This is how we can say with certainty that simply increasing the bonus percentage so that it is somewhere over the norm of 100 per cent has an instant impact, while adding niche payment methods instantly makes you attractive to additional player groups you may otherwise miss. 

The game library is also incredibly important, from the live casino offering to the slot selection. Slots in particular is the game of choice for most players, but the number of slots tally into the thousands. It is possible to build a solid user base by only offering the essential classics and the latest hits, but you will be losing players along the way. Just as with payment methods, catering to as many niches as possible will open you up to more players.

Additionally, a smooth and user-friendly experience enhances player satisfaction and fosters loyalty. By delivering on these core elements, new slot sites can differentiate themselves and make a memorable impression in the competitive Canadian market.

CasinoBeats: When it comes to game selection, what strategies do you suggest for new slot sites to attract Canadian players?

: Canadian players appreciate a diverse range of high-quality games. It is important to offer both quality and quantity. In our handpicked selection of the best new slot sites in the Canadian market, we highlight the casinos that manage to be the full package, delivering the big classics, the hottest new slots and still manages to satisfy key niches. 

Canadians have diverse preferences, so catering to different tastes can help attract and retain players. I can also not stress enough how important it is to regularly update the game library with fresh releases.

CasinoBeats: Bonuses and promotions are always enticing to players. What kind of offers do you suggest new slot sites provide to attract Canadian players?

: Yes, bonuses and promotions play a significant role in attracting players. New slot sites should put a lot of their focus on offering attractive welcome packages. As I mentioned earlier, just offering a bonus percentage slightly above the norm has an instant impact, but I would recommend setting your welcome bonus to 200%. Any casino that does this can expect a near-instant increase in FTDs.

Of course, bonuses are not just about attracting new players, they are also about keeping the players you have secured happy. Regular promotions such as reload bonuses, cashback offers, or tournaments help retain players’ interest. 

It’s essential to ensure that these offers come with fair terms and conditions, transparent wagering requirements, and are communicated clearly to players. By providing appealing and transparent promotions, new slot sites can captivate the attention of Canadian players and encourage their loyalty.

CasinoBeats: How can new slot sites be seen as safe in the Canadian market?

: While it’s important to note that currently only Ontario has a licence for online gambling, new sites operating in the rest of the Canadian market can still showcase that they are safe by displaying licensing information from regulatory bodies, not to mention certificates from review sites, such as our own. 

Canadians do their due diligence when choosing casinos to play, for instance by signing up through a service such as Bojoko, where all casinos we list are safe, trusted and tested. This is an instant way for players to know that they are signing up at a casino they can trust.

Additionally, they can promote responsible gambling by providing tools for setting limits, offering self-exclusion options, and collaborating with organisations that support responsible gaming. The industry standard utilising SSL encryption to protect player data and transactions is also a must, as is working with trusted payment processors. By following these measures, new slot sites can prioritise player safety and provide a secure experience for Canadian players, regardless of the limited licensing options.

CasinoBeats: How can new slot sites ensure they get the necessary exposure in the Canadian market to reach potential players?

: Gaining necessary exposure in the Canadian market is crucial for fresh slot sites, and this is where affiliates like Bojoko play a vital role. While bigger brands can spend money on large advertisement campaigns, paid search, etc. smaller casinos can actually drown in costs due to exuberant campaigns.

This is where we come in. When partnering with Bojoko, casinos only have to pay for the players that actually register and make a deposit. And of course, we come with a large built-in user base that uses our platform to find their next casino. Casinos will be available on all lists relevant to them, including lists showcasing bonuses, payment methods, game developers and all other key attributes a player might be interested in. 

This is another reason to focus on having a large number of payment methods and quality offers, as it also increases your exposure on our platform. However, regardless of how many attributes you may have, all the latest casinos will be added to our lists dedicated to new casinos and new slot sites.

Generally, a small casino should prioritize affiliation, but if you have the funds, carefully targeting paid advertising, engaging with players through social media channels, and collaborating with reputable influencers and content creators can also contribute to gaining exposure in the Canadian market.