Rating Online Casinos

by J. Phillip Vogel

This lesson offers 20 Questions to assist with rating online casinos included in the Online Gambling Guide.

As an authority on internet gambling, I am continually asked many questions by gamblers who are contemplating taking the plunge into the sea of online casinos.
Among the questions are “Is it safe?” or “Do you have to play for real money?” Other queries are about banking, taxes, the legality of online gambling and software.
There are additional betting choices today like sportsbetting, specialty poker/cardrooms and skill games. With a number of large mega-gaming sites presenting multiple choices in 1 place, a rating system is useful.
This begs the question, “How can I tell if an online casino is any good?”

Given the number of online casinos and poker rooms that are steadily popping up to meet the popularity of gambling online, it has become complicated to pick out only those that are the very best casino and poker sites.
While concerns regarding those less-than reputable or scam casino sites have lessened over the years as the industry has come together with better regulation, there are still a few bad apples left to justify rating online casinos.

To complicate matters further, there is often not a wide gap among the legitimate sites in terms of how good or worthwhile they are.
For example, some sites that prefer to stay on the cutting edge by updating their software and game selection on a continuous basis. On the other hand, others opt to remain with their outdated software rather than suffer the added expense of continued growth.
The sites that are lazy may not be criminal but they sorely lack much of the value, professionalism and in some cases customer service that you will find at the leading casino sites.
Based on this, it is always in the players’ interest and benefit to find the very best site that suits their gaming tastes while exploring for others that are even better than the last.

The first step in locating and rating online casinos is very simple: Do your homework. Do not simply rely on advertisements or broad search categories.
Visit a reputable online gambling portal or several are better; read the reviews and observe what others have to say about the sites. You will want to read any books, magazines, newsletters and ezines that are pertinent to the subject and seek out everything you can about online gambling sites.
Once you have found a few online casinos or poker rooms that appeal to you, explore them extensively.
Look over the game previews, their online promotions, any banking issues that may be occurring at the present time and of course, the security features available.
If the company background is offered, it is a good idea to scan that as well. This info. is usually found on the menu item--About Us.
As you examine these sites and consider rating online casinos, you will want to ask some key questions:
  • Are the graphics and overall design professional grade? 
  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they post their payout percentages and how well do my favorite games pay?
  • How many games do they offer?  Are their enough games that I’m likely to play?
  • How do I contact them if there is a problem? 
These are just a few of the important questions that need answers before you download and install the software and deposit money.
As you become more experienced, and determine what it is that meets your needs, the list will likely grow.

There is a brief checklist below that will assist in choosing the online casino that is right for you.
This will develop a clear picture of the sites that you may be considering.
However, while this test can serve as a basic guideline for rating online casinos, it is not definitive and online gamblers must make sure that they thoroughly research any casino site before becoming a player there.
Additionally, just because a site is using a software platform that other reputable sites are using does not necessarily mean that they are automatically a recommended site also.

Rating Online Casinos: Your Guide
Below are 20 questions divided in four major categories: reputation, software, security & banking, and player incentives. 
For each question, circle the answer that best suits your current casino.

Rating Online Casinos: Reputation

1. How many awards has the site won?
A. None/information not offered     
B. 1-2     
C. 3-4
D. 5 or more
2.  Their monthly payout percentages are:
A.  Never mentioned on the site
B.  Reviewed by an independent auditor
C.  Audited and available for examination by players
3.  Are they affiliated with a traditional casino or gaming group anywhere in the world?
A.  No
B.  Yes
4.   Are they affiliated with or a member of any online gaming regulatory group such as eCOGRA?
A.  No
B.  Yes
5.  You heard about this online casino(s) via:
A.  E-mail directly from company
B.  Found a banner ad on a web site
C.  Read a review in a magazine

Rating Online Casinos: Software
6.  How many games does the site offer?
A.  Less than a dozen
B.  12-25
C.  26-75
D.  76 or more

7.  Does the site offer any multi-player games with chat options?
A.  No     
B.  Yes
8.  The software is available via:
A.  Download
B.  Download and Java or Flash
C.  Download, Java or Flash and CD
9. How realistic are the site’s graphics and sounds?
A. Not at all
B. Like an old arcade game
C. Nice, but not entirely realistic
D. Fantastic 3-D images and realistic game sounds
10.Do they use a Random Number Generator (RNG) to assure fair outcomes?
A. No/They don’t mention a RNG
B. Yes
Rating Online Casinos: Security, Support & Banking
11.  Are all financial transactions supported/protected by the latest encryption software?
A. No
B. Yes

12. How fast are withdrawals processed?
A. Once a week
B. Every 48 hours
C. Within 24 hours
13. What types of customer support do they offer?
A.  None
B.  E-mail
C.  24/7 E-mail and toll-free telephone
D.  24/7 E-mail, toll-free telephone and live chat
14. How many ways can players make deposits and withdrawals?
A.  1-2
B.  3-4
C.  4-5
D.  6 or more
15.  Do they offer security features that allow players to check their deposits or game results?
A  No
B. Yes
Player Incentives
16.  Does the site offer loyalty, returning player or Player Reward programs?
A.   No
B.   Yes
17. How much is the initial sign-up bonus worth?
A.   No bonus
B.   Percentage or cash up to $100
C.   Percentage or cash up to $200
D.   More than $200
18. Do they offer player bonuses for using specific deposit methods?
A.  No additional bonus
B.  Yes, up to 5%
C.  Yes, more than 5%
19. Do their Player Reward points carry-over each month?
A.   No, they expire at the end of each month
B.   Yes, they carry over from month to month
20. Are there referral bonuses available?
A.   No
B.   Yes, 5%
C.   Yes, 10%
D.   Yes, 20% or more
Rating Online Casinos: The Results
How well did your site do? Add up the totals from each section according to your responses (A=0 points; B=1 point; C=2 Points; D=3 points) and compare that value to the table below:
Score                   Site Rating
10 or less              Poor           
11-24                    Average
25-34                    Pretty good
35+                        Excellent

Rating Online Casinos is followed by Online Winners
Go to the Online Gambling Guide
Go to Gambling Teachers Quiz Series
Return to Top of Page

GT is attentive about getting the word out about our free programs, lessons and add-ons offered, however, we ask your assistance and consideration in promoting us.
Click link below that reads, "Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how..." to add a link to your site, blog or personal page.

good luck from gambling pros

Tips, Terms & Wins

‘Iringion’ hit a $116,828. jackpot while playing the Wild Heart slot machine. “I wasn’t even a real slot fan before this,” said Iringion. “I used to prefer online poker and other card games, but after this experience, you can be sure I love spinning slots now.”
 "I just figured that there are more slots and players probably play the slots more often than the card games, which is why I see so many slot machine jackpots.
When the cards came up, I will never forget seeing that beloved jack of diamonds fall on the bottom line."

GT Series add-ons

gambling quiz series

25 Gambling Quiz

fast track game tips series

10 Fast Track Game Tips

casino terms lingo

12 Casino Terms-Lingo