Cookies on the Gambling Commission website

The Gambling Commission website uses cookies to make the site work better for you. Some of these cookies are essential to how the site functions and others are optional. Optional cookies help us remember your settings, measure your use of the site and personalise how we communicate with you. Any data collected is anonymised and we do not set optional cookies unless you consent.

Set cookie preferences

You've accepted all cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time.

Skip to main content

The impact of different types of gambling activities

Within this framework, the journey will look and feel different for individuals based on their specific situation. In particular, the type of gambling activity they are taking part in will have a significant impact on their journey. Below, we outline the influences that are more prevalent at each stage for different methods of gambling.

It’s worth bearing in mind that there is a higher level of crossover between betting and online, and games and land-based activities, which may be driving some of the influences outlined below. For example, people taking part in online activities are more likely to be influenced by unusually good prizes/odds because they’re more likely to be placing a bet, not because of anything inherent to online gambling itself.

Influences that are more prominent for particular types of gambling

External triggers Internal impulses Active search Play experience
Online Special offers, direct comms, tips, unusually good prizes/odds To pass the time (primarily games), to add excitement to a game / event (primarily betting) Familiarity, trust, past experience of playing/winning Winning, having fun, special offers
Land based Someone else suggested it, it caught my eye Spontaneous decision, feeling lucky (both primarily scratchcards), to be social (bingo & casinos) Caught my eye, feels like fun, felt like a good idea n/a - it reflects the overall gambling journey
Betting Tips, unusually good prizes/odds, special offers To add excitement to a game/ event, to feel part of something Having an existing account, money in the account, ease of withdrawing money, trust the operator, previous experience of winning Direct comms, receiving a tip
Gaming It caught my eye (primarily scratchcards) Spontaneous decision, feeling lucky (both primarily scratchcards), to pass the time (primarily online games) Caught my eye (driven by scratchcards), feels like fun, felt like a good idea n/a - it reflects the overall gambling journey

Key differences:

Special offers, unusually good odds and direct communications play a greater role for betting and online activities, as does past experience – either of playing, winning, or simply already having an account set up with funds.

Catching the eye plays a key role for games and land-based activities (predominantly scratchcards) both as an external trigger and in the active search phase. It’s often accompanied by a spontaneous decision, feeling lucky (both internal impulses) and the activity feeling fun and like a good idea (both at active search).

Betting and gaming tend to have opposing internal impulses – with bets driven by a desire to add excitement to another event (e.g. sports game), while games (particularly online games) are more likely to be motivated by wanting to simply pass the time.

Previous page
Key influences at each stage of the journey
Next page
Implications for higher risk gamblers
Is this page useful?
Back to top