Sports Betting Platform Localization: DevOps vs Translator

The diverse nature of sports betting requires a thorough approach to each market to ensure a highly relevant and engaging platform for gamblers around the world. Russell Karp explains how a DevOps team can benefit betting operators and help them build a global-ready solution.
4 min read
12/01/21
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By Russell Karp
Vice President, Media & Entertainment
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Sports Betting Platform Localization: DevOps vs Translator

Betting on sports is a global phenomenon. And although the sports that are most popular vary by geographic location, one thing remains constant: fans love to put their money down on a game!

Sports betting enthusiasts are everywhere, making online gambling an ideal industry to pursue. However, given the global marketplace, it is essential for platform operators to focus their attention on the comprehensive localization of content.

While translating the language is one of the clear necessities when localizing betting platform content, there is a great deal more to consider. The cultural differences from country-to-country are vast, requiring significant variance to ensure relevance for consumers in each distinct market. For example, the event details that are compelling to an American audience will not always resonate with sports fans in Australia, while the news and announcements that intrigue sports enthusiasts in England may fall flat with fans in Japan. The diverse nature of a global consumer base demands a thorough analysis of each market to ensure a highly relevant and engaging platform for fans around the world.

Global Requires Local

Gaming operators who wish to localize their sports betting platforms for new markets often face a multitude of strategic challenges. Although localization may appear to merely require utilizing the services of translation experts with an in-depth understanding of the relevant terminology, a single translation of a platform’s pages is not sufficient when aiming to achieve successful localization in new markets.

Platform localization covers a wide range of strategic requirements, including:

  • Compliance with local laws and gambling regulations
  • Modifying content to suit international or regional audiences
  • Ensuring cultural compatibility
  • Layout adjustments to match differing content, including altering images, icons, and colors
  • Conversion of currencies and measurement units
  • Adjustments to location-specific information (phone numbers, dates, etc.)
  • Testing linguistic and localization features

DevOps for The Win

One of the many challenges facing betting platform operators is making solutions compliant with a wide range of local laws and regulations, which often requires many additional technical adjustments.

Several key ingredients require attention when bringing a sports betting platform to a new market, such as:

  • Data hosting and storage: in some areas, user data must be stored locally, whereas other areas allow cloud storage
  • Geo-restrictions: ensure compliance with local laws concerning platform access from other areas
  • Mobile gambling: regulations about whether betting via a mobile device is allowed varies in different markets
  • Payment methods: credit cards are not allowed in certain locations, while some areas do not allow users to fund their sportsbook accounts online
  • Various betting options: as an example, in-game betting and exchange betting are still in their infancy in the US
  • User registration: the creation of online accounts may or may not be supported, depending on local regulations
  • Get your platform tested, reviewed, and certified by an authorized organization, such as Gaming Laboratories International

The combination of factors mentioned may vary from country to country, from state to state. Let’s say, for example, an operator wants to run their exciting European sportsbooks across the US. Although they have already translated their content into English, they are hit with the reality that each state has its own set of regulations. So, not only do they have to translate the pages, but the operator must alter the content to ensure compliance with the laws in each state. This situation becomes a nightmare for software developers, as they stare at the complexity of creating solution clones to meet the legal requirements in each area. Things may get even worse if building a new data center or moving to cloud storage with servers in the new target location is required by regulations, business needs, or just better fits the system architecture.

DevOps provides the answer. The comprehensive and intertwined nature of a DevOps approach helps betting operators to seamlessly expand into new locations. By developing automated deployment pipelines and specific sets of rules, DevOps create an infrastructure that allows for the entire system to be easily expanded into a new region, scaled up and scaled down using inventory files and changing amount of boxes in the configuration file. In other words, DevOps enables the development team to turn on and off the features and services for a specific location writing a minimal amount of code and in a matter of days. Moreover, the deployment pipelines created by DevOps will significantly save time and shorten the feedback loop when a new feature or a bugfix is released to the betting platform running across different locations.

Additionally, DevOps may help when applying for a certificate. For example, to get your platform evaluated by GLI, a proper testing environment should be set up. DevOps will help the development team select and manage necessary components and tools to make sure that the environment satisfies  requirements and the test coverage is complete and accurate.

The importance of DevOps for sports betting platforms cannot be overstated. A DevOps team greatly benefits operators and help them overcome security and dependency concerns while delivering an engaging and culturally global-ready solution where all localization requirements will be met with minimal effort and maximum efficiency.

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