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A visitor to a New Jersey casino website seems like a promising lead for that casino’s online property – far more so than, say, a random guest selected from the slot banks.
But despite that intuitively appealing assumption, not all Atlantic City casinos are giving their online arms equal exposure on the bit of online real estate that matters the most: above the fold on the homepage.
From highest to lowest, here’s a snapshot (taken January 5th, 2014) of the exposure online gambling is getting on the front pages of the casinos authorized to offer Internet-based poker and casino games in New Jersey.
The Borgata stands out among Atlantic City properties when it comes to the amount of homepage real estate devoted to online gambling products.
As you can see below, a full half of the page is committed to featuring Borgata’s online casino and the Borgata online poker room:
The only casino that even comes close to the Borgata on this score is Tropicana Atlantic City, which features online gambling (casino – Tropicana doesn’t offer poker yet) in two spots on the homepage – in the primary slider and again in the bank of four ads below the slider.
You could argue that Tropicana actually gives online gambling a bit more exposure than Borgata in terms of total pixels. But the slider content rotates roughly every four seconds, so I discounted it a bit.
Tropicana also features their online casino in the main menu as a sub-item under CASINO.
Online gambling is present on the main page for the Golden Nugget AC. But it’s a bit of a Waldo, buried amidst a bevy of buttons and an attention-grabbing slider (that displayed spastic tendencies on my visit using Chrome):
Do you see it?
It’s in the middle of the bank of three rectangular ads down and to the left from the slider – $10 Free Play.
Golden Nugget does not link to their online casino or free-play online poker room in the main navigation menu. A somewhat prominent link to the free-play poker site is on the bottom right of the page footer, which you could argue is above the fold for some.
It’s worth noting that Golden Nugget AC doesn’t really have a front page so much as it’s a sub-section of the primary GoldenNugget.com website. That website also displays a full page-width ad for online poker (nothing about casino), but the ad is at the bottom of the page.
Caesars and Harrah’s both use the same basic website template. Neither makes any discernible mention of online gambling anywhere on the page, above the fold or below.
Online gambling is not present in the menu, the extended homepage content or even on the section of the site devoted to casino play.
The closest thing I could find to an online gambling reference was a tiny WSOP icon in the page footer that links to WSOP.com.
While both Trump Plaza and Trump Taj Mahal are licensed and have partners operating online products (Betfair and Ultimate Gaming, respectively), neither has launched an online product bearing their individual brand.
Therefore it’s little surprise that neither website contains any mention of an online gambling option.