TheBigPaybak
TheBigPaybak
Joined: May 14, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 8:31:05 AM permalink
For years, I've entertained the idea of creating an elegant, easy to use website that would essentially by a comprehensive directory of land-based casinos.

While there are websites out there that do this, at least the ones that I've visited don't follow the same approach I would use and are not what I would consider to be very appealing to the end user. To be clear, I haven't done an exhaustive recent competitive analysis for this space lately, so it's possible things may have changed, although I doubt it.

The main points would be:
1. Elegant, easy-to-use interface
2. Garbage-free design- no obnoxious ads!
3. Ability to filter by region(state/province/country) or special destination(las vegas/tunica/macau), for example
4. Be able to show the closest casinos to your location(your home, a zip code, a city), for example
5. Ideally a table-game locator, although it would need to be up to date which would require periodic updates from shfl, deq, glxz, etc. At one time shfl had this on their website, but it's been a while- plus some may not want to do so for competitive reasons. We could utilize 'spotters', but the reliability would be suspect, and that would be a problem for me. This feature wouldn't necessarily be a deal-breaker for the project, though.

At least for the main functionality, strictly speaking, nothing too new here- although there would be huge efforts made to keep things simple, clean, and elegant. (This is what I do for my day job, so we have the expertise).

One thing it would do very well, is given your location, provide results closest to you- and easy driving instructions. For example, if I went traveling on business to Chicago, it would answer the question of where I could gamble and I could get a feel for my choices. This feature probably wouldn't be too useful for those in Vegas, but a lot of us aren't in Vegas. Quite frankly, I'm not even sure of all of my options within a 3-hour driving radius from my home- let alone a foreign city.

I just wanted to put it out there to see if any other forum members would find such a resource useful and if anyone you had any feedback. As mentioned above, the design and implementation wouldn't be a problem as that's what my company does, although efforts would of course need to be made to keep everything accurate.

Any ideas/feedback everyone? Thanks in advance!
Lack of prior planning on your part doesn't constitute an emergency on my part.
Mission146
Mission146
Joined: May 15, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 8:45:01 AM permalink
It's not a bad idea, but here are a couple of things:

1.) If you are not going to have ads, you are not going to have revenue, so it's going to cost. I'm not sure how much. If you were thinking of making it a paid service, I wouldn't pay for it. If I am willing to go to more than one website, I can get everything you offer for free within minutes.

2.) You can use Google to filter by region, but again, if I don't have to go through what results I want, your website would be worth knowing straight off the top, if it were free or paying for itself with ads...

3.) The table game locator is very much unnecessary, for a few reasons.

A.) Just put what table games the casino offers, the material may or may not be correct by the time the person actually gets there, then they are pissed at your website. If they know that a casino offers Let It Ride, and that's what they are looking for, then the casino's phone number will be on there anyway. They can call and see if it is open and until what time. You could also put what hours every game is generally open while still advising calling.

B.) Bravo Poker already does this for Live Poker games, and the information comes directly from the casino. The only exception is when the casino forgets to change the information, but the accuracy rate (I have called a few casinos in the country at random to check/compare) is well over 95%. I don't know how many sites the poker room manager would want to do this for every time a table breaks up/gets added, though.

4.) I have seen many sites linked up to Mapquest or Google Maps, so you only have to input your address. I don't know what, if anything, this costs, but it would be a convenient function for users.

***My advice is to re-think your position on the ads, just make sure they are not pervasive. People usually only click if they want to, and you are usually paid per click. I think you could well get casinos in competitive or out-of-the-way areas to advertise on there, so that might generate a revenue stream that could get the site to break-even, or better.
Vultures can't be choosers.
CrapsForever
CrapsForever
Joined: Mar 6, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 10:07:50 AM permalink
Excellent Idea!

I travel a lot and the first thing I check for when traveling is the closest Casino near my destination with Craps. I traveled through Europe for the first time back in 2009 and was not aware that there were a few Casinos in London and a few other places that I visited that have Craps.

Do you plan on making your website strictly United States Casino based or will it also have International Casino locations?
Craps is the most "Jekyll and Hyde" casino game ever invented!
EvenBob
EvenBob
Joined: Jul 18, 2010
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August 27th, 2012 at 10:40:41 AM permalink
Quote: TheBigPaybak


5. Ideally a table-game locator, although it would need to be up to date which would require periodic updates



Nobody does this. The only way to find a specific
game is to call the casino and talk to somebody
on the floor and half the time they don't know.
I'm always wanting to know if a casino has Rapid
Roulette or Roulette Evolution but its never listed,
or rarely listed on a casinos website. And if they
get rid of a game, they seldom update, it just stays
on their site forever.

Getting info from casinos on table games would
be a super pain, and you would almost have to
visit each casino personally.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
Wizard
Administrator
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
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August 27th, 2012 at 10:54:00 AM permalink
There is a need for somebody to do something like this well. Usually I use Casino City for this function, but they are often out of date. I'm still very angry with that guide, and myself, for their treatment of Puerto Iguazu, Argentina. There are two casinos in that town (the Panaromic Iguazu and Iguazu Grand), and they list only one. I spent three days in that town and missed the more famous of the two, because I thought there was one only, due to Casino City. This was also just as much my fault for I had another guide that also listed one casino, but the other one. I should have compared sources to see that there were two.

Even though you are restricting yourself to just the US, it would still be a large undertaking to do it right and stay up to date. You might start on a smaller scale, like just the casinos in California.

Aside from ads from Internet casinos, it is very tough making money via advertising on the Internet.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
EvenBob
EvenBob
Joined: Jul 18, 2010
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August 27th, 2012 at 11:24:32 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

There is a need for somebody to do something like this well.



It would be a big hit if it can be done at all. There is no guide
that tells you anything about what a specific casino offers as
far as gambling goes. How many BJ tables, how many roulette
tables, what the min's are, how many slots, what are all the
table games offered. And a hundred other things. Putting a
guide together would be an undertaking, I believe there are
over 1500 casinos in the US now.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
TheBigPaybak
TheBigPaybak
Joined: May 14, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 11:26:33 AM permalink
Quote: Mission146

It's not a bad idea, but here are a couple of things:

1.) If you are not going to have ads, you are not going to have revenue, so it's going to cost. I'm not sure how much. If you were thinking of making it a paid service, I wouldn't pay for it. If I am willing to go to more than one website, I can get everything you offer for free within minutes.



It would be a free service. With regard to ads, I probably should have been more clear to state that they just wouldn't be done in an obnoxious way that would interfere with the operation/elegance of the site. They wouldn't get in the way and would hopefully be helpful, too.

Quote: Mission146

3.) The table game locator is very much unnecessary, for a few reasons.

A.) Just put what table games the casino offers, the material may or may not be correct by the time the person actually gets there, then they are pissed at your website. If they know that a casino offers Let It Ride, and that's what they are looking for, then the casino's phone number will be on there anyway. They can call and see if it is open and until what time. You could also put what hours every game is generally open while still advising calling.

B.) Bravo Poker already does this for Live Poker games, and the information comes directly from the casino. The only exception is when the casino forgets to change the information, but the accuracy rate (I have called a few casinos in the country at random to check/compare) is well over 95%. I don't know how many sites the poker room manager would want to do this for every time a table breaks up/gets added, though.



The accuracy of the information on the site I would take very seriously: if we didn't have a good way to ensure accuracy, we wouldn't add the information. I still think it would be great to have this feature but only if I could ensure accuracy. For example, I would love to be able to do a quick search and find, for example, where I could try out Six Card Poker, or other new games. Manufacturers would have to play ball at the very least.

Quote: Mission146

4.) I have seen many sites linked up to Mapquest or Google Maps, so you only have to input your address. I don't know what, if anything, this costs, but it would be a convenient function for users.



We'd make it very slick on this front!

Quote: Mission146

***My advice is to re-think your position on the ads, just make sure they are not pervasive. People usually only click if they want to, and you are usually paid per click. I think you could well get casinos in competitive or out-of-the-way areas to advertise on there, so that might generate a revenue stream that could get the site to break-even, or better.



I agree. Ultimately Casinos, bus tour operators, junket operators- a lot of possibilities- although out the gate, we'd first focus on just getting the traffic.

Thanks for your feedback!
Lack of prior planning on your part doesn't constitute an emergency on my part.
TheBigPaybak
TheBigPaybak
Joined: May 14, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 11:30:36 AM permalink
Quote: CrapsForever

Excellent Idea!

I travel a lot and the first thing I check for when traveling is the closest Casino near my destination with Craps. I traveled through Europe for the first time back in 2009 and was not aware that there were a few Casinos in London and a few other places that I visited that have Craps.

Do you plan on making your website strictly United States Casino based or will it also have International Casino locations?



Thanks! While the United States would be the obvious "Phase 1", International destinations would definitely be part of the overall plan. I would venture to say that most of us regulars on this board, when traveling abroad, are curious and would enjoy the local action- at least to just visit and check out.
Lack of prior planning on your part doesn't constitute an emergency on my part.
TheBigPaybak
TheBigPaybak
Joined: May 14, 2012
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August 27th, 2012 at 11:33:16 AM permalink
Quote: EvenBob

Getting info from casinos on table games would
be a super pain, and you would almost have to
visit each casino personally.



It's a hard problem to solve. I'd like to think the game manufacturers themselves have good records, although, not sure if they'll play ball. If they were interested in doing so, we would make it very easy for them- for example building a custom interface that could import whatever report they would now generate on the subject, which I'm sure they have.
Lack of prior planning on your part doesn't constitute an emergency on my part.
EvenBob
EvenBob
Joined: Jul 18, 2010
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August 27th, 2012 at 11:36:50 AM permalink
Quote: TheBigPaybak

It's a hard problem to solve. I'd like to think the game manufacturers themselves have good records, although, not sure if they'll play ball.



They don't play ball at all. I have tried to get info
from Bally and IGT about what casinos have what
games and you hit a brick wall. They tell you to
call the casinos and ask, they can't give out client
info to the public without their permission.

Try it, call IGT and ask them what casinos have
Roulette Evolution, for example. I guarantee they
will tell you diddly.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal

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