Don’t gamble on customer data: the importance of data maintenance in the gaming industry

The past few years have been transformative for the gaming industry with more people than ever turning to online gambling platforms. But with increasing yields also comes increasing scrutiny. As well as existing regulations to adhere to, the Gambling Commission has introduced plans for the industry to move towards a Single Customer View to safeguard vulnerable customers.  

On top of this, with the market becoming increasingly saturated, operators are under growing pressure to remain relevant and provide seamless online customer experiences.  

The simplest solution to address these challenges is data maintenance. Here, we discuss the many benefits of playing your cards right when it comes to customer data. 

Complying with regulations 

Having the ability to identify customers and maintain accurate contact information is essential in meeting the conditions of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter-Terrorism Financing (CTF) regulations.  

Failure to do so can result in hefty fines for operators. In fact, last year alone, a total of £32.1 million was paid by 15 gambling businesses as a result of fines or regulatory settlements – more than any previous year.  

Implementing address verification software enables you to capture valid address data at the onboarding stage, ensuring your database is clean from the start and you meet regulatory requirements for data quality.  

Regular data cleansing and maintenance also assists compliance by helping you identify duplicate or potentially fraudulent accounts, as well as flagging any house movers or deceased customers.  

Safeguarding customers  

Given the very nature of gaming, protecting vulnerable customers should be a key priority for any responsible operator. And it’s an issue the industry takes very seriously. Last year, the UK’s Gambling Commission announced plans to form a Single Customer View for the industry, whereby data on an individual’s gambling activity is shared between businesses to prevent gambling harm for those who hold accounts with more than one gambling company.  

With this in mind, it’s essential that operators have systems and policies in place to identify customers who may be experiencing or showing signs of gambling problems.   

In order to achieve this insight, businesses need data that’s clean and up to date. Regularly maintained data enables operators to spot issues and interact with customers early and effectively, as well as offering full transparency to legislators.  

Assigning UDPRNs (or Unique Delivery Point Reference Numbers) to customer data can also be helpful in preventing problematic behaviour, such as bonus abuse.  

Improving marketing ROI  

Turning the lens inward, there are also plenty of benefits to regular data maintenance. The most notable is improved marketing ROI. Data maintenance strips out fraudulent, inactive, and incorrect details, meaning that more of your communications will reach the intended targets. Furthermore, any learnings you might take from a campaign are more reliable after a data cleanse.   

For example, say you have 100 customers in a segment that you wish to send an email to. However, 20 of these emails are inactive, meaning there is no chance the communications will ever be seen. If you then run a report after the campaign is finished and see that the number of unopened emails was 50, you would have no idea that your campaign was actually more successful than it would appear given that 50 out of 80 active customers opened the email rather than 50 out of 100.   

As such, data cleanses give you a better idea of how your marketing campaigns are performing, enabling you to create better plans for future communications.  

Clean and accurate data is key in tackling regulatory and social responsibility challenges in the gaming industry, whilst improving customer communication and customer experience.  

Ongoing data maintenance provides you with the clearest picture of your customer base and ensures you won’t fall foul of the penalties for data misuse, making it a rare sure thing in this industry of chance.