Market intelligence provider SuperData has reported a year-on-year decline in social casino usage during the 12 months through to December 31, with monthly active user numbers down by 13%.
In its ‘Social Casino Metrics: Industry Trends and Analyses’ report published this month, the company revealed that despite a year-on-year drop in usage, players have become more engaged with social casino games.
SuperData, which noted that its research does not include Asia, also said that the share of players who log in every day has increased, with the number of casual players dropping during the past 12 months.
Other key findings in the report include data that suggests the top 10 publishers now control 81% of the market, compared to 69% in the first quarter of 2014.
Carter Rogers, a casino analyst at SuperData, told iGaming Business that although the social casino audience may be shrinking, this may not necessarily be a bad thing for the larger publishers.
“As the social casino audience shrinks but becomes more dedicated, the largest publishers have particular advantages,” Rogers said.
“They're able to spend more on user acquisition, and land-based casino patrons recognise names like Caesars, IGT and Scientific Games.
“Small and mid-size publishers are carving out space in this market by developing casino games with unique themes or gameplay instead of trying to compete directly with the most popular titles.”
SuperData also forecasts that social casino revenue on mobile will surpass that of desktop games during the coming year, with earnings from mobile social casino games expected to rise by 11% to hit approximately $1.4 billion (€1.3 billion).
In addition, the report highlighted the use of VIP rewards programmes as one of the most popular tools used by publishers to entice players.
“The top five publishers with VIP programs earned 68% more in December 2015 than the top five without,” Rogers said.
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