The latest gambling behaviour report released by the Gambling Commission covered activity in January, February and March 2023, a period that included the Cheltenham Festival horse racing event.
The Commission said the increase in online GGY was primarily driven by growth in real event betting and slots. The regulator also noted a rise in the total number of bets and spins, as well as average monthly active accounts.
Online real event betting was up almost 13% to £555m, with the number of bets 19% higher and average monthly active accounts 9% up year-on-year. The Commission put this down to the popularity of the Cheltenham Festival and player retention from the 2022 Fifa World Cup late last year.
Meanwhile, online slots GGY edged up 2% to £525m, helped by a 9% rise in the number of spins to 19.5 billion and a 15% increase in average monthly active accounts to 3.9 million.
In terms of other activity, online casino GGY slipped 4% to £153m, virtual betting declined 3% to £12m and online poker fell 7% to £18m, although esports betting was level at £2m.
Turning to land-based activity and total GGY for this area of the market increased 6% year-on-year to £585m.
Gaming machine GGY was 5% higher at £292m, with average spend per session increasing to £12.26. The average number of spins per machine session was also up to 131 spins, while 3% of all machine sessions lasted for more than one hour.
The popularity of self-service betting terminals also continued to grow, with GGY hiking 28% to £125m. The Commission also noted a 28% rise in the number of bets placed on terminals to 37 million.
However, over-the-country GGY was down 5% to £167m, with the number of bets falling 4% to 138 million.