What distinguishes Denmark's high-staking gamblers from the rest?
June 7th, 2023, Oliver Rowe

What distinguishes Denmark's high-staking gamblers from the rest?

Gamblers who stake more than Kr3,000 each month make up a small slice, just 12%, of all monthly gamblers in Denmark (excluding those who only play lotteries). In this piece, we examine who these ‘high-staking bettors’ are, their betting preferences and what motivations fuel their betting behaviour.

The demographics

Relative to Danish gamblers who stake lower amounts each month, the high-staking bettors are similar is gender but are a significantly younger cohort. While 68% of all monthly bettors are male, those aged 18-44 make up 73% of the high-staking cohort, but only 48% of lower staking gamblers.

Income data shows that high-staking bettors are slightly more likely to come from middle or lower-income groups than lower staking gamblers (65% vs 54%).

What do they bet on?

High-staking bettors are just as likely than lower staking bettors to have bet on sports (excluding horse racing) online in the past month. Almost two fifths of both groups have bet on sports online (39% vs 38%) but looking at offline sports betting the gap is wider with 19% of higher stakers having bet offline at a track/stadium and 19% away from a track/stadium, while for lower stakers it is only 8% and 13% respectively. Looking separately at horse racing online, 15% of higher stakers have bet on it in the past month compared with just 6% of lower stakers.

Away from sports the top online betting activites for higher stakers are slots (35% vs 16% of lower stakers), casino table/card games (28% vs 12%), and skill games (24% vs 8%). There is also a large gap between high and low stakers for poker (20% vs 9%), bingo/keno (16% vs 9%) and esports (13% vs 4%). Other gambling such as spread betting, fantasy sports and live streaming table games and game shows are also all stronger with higher stakers.

Where lower stakers out-index higher stakers is on lottery games. 21% of lower stakers play lottery offline compared with only 15% of higher stakers (online 26% vs 20%), and the same pattern is true of scratch cards offline (18% vs 13%) but not online where higher stakers over-index (11% vs 8%).

Which online bookmakers do they use, and how to they select one?

Looking at the online betting sites they use, the most used for high stakers is bet365, with 27% of them saying they used it in the past week versus only 17% of lower stakers. The top site for lower stakers is Danske Spil which is almost twice as popular as for higher stakers (43% vs 24%). Oddset from Danske Spil is the only other site that is more popular with lower stakers (12% vs 9%).

For the higher stakers the next most popular sites are Casino from Danske Spil (16% vs 6% of lower stakers), Unibet (12% vs 7%), Eurojackpot (12% vs 6%) and Bingo from Danske Spil (10% vs 4%).

When it comes to how these high and low stakers pick an online betting provider, for higher stakers being fun comes top (35% vs 21%), followed by having the best selection of slots/games (30% vs 13%) and has the best odds (29% vs 28%). For lower stakers top is having an easy to use site/app (32% vs 26% of higher stakers).

Which sports do they bet on?

Looking at the type of sports bet on reveals that while high-staking bettors under-index quite significantly on football (39% vs 52% of lower stakers), they are more likely to have bet on almost every other sport in the past 12 months.

This includes handball (23% vs 14%), tennis (20% vs 10%), American football (18% vs 7%), ice hockey (17% vs 8%), horse racing (14% vs 5%) among others. Political elections also over-index for higher stakers (16% vs 3%).

What fuels their betting choices?

Just over two fiths of high-staking bettors say they only use betting sites that offer loyalty schemes (42%), significantly higher than the one fifth of lower staking bettors (20%). But the attraction towards loyalty schemes does not keep high spenders tethered to one bookmaker – half of them agree they “like to try new gambling/betting sites that I’ve not come across before” (50% vs 19%).

Also they are more likely to be attracted by the offer of a free bet than lower staking players with 45% agreeing compared with 26% of lower stakers.

Methodology: Data is taken from YouGov’s Global Gambling Profiles tool which interviewed a representative sample of 1,760 regular gamblers in April 2022 and November 2022. Fieldwork was completed online and all respondents are members of YouGov’s Danish panel of survey respondents.

Image Credit: Darya Sannikova on Pexels