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Social Gaming Market: Snapshot 

Sensing an opportunity created by the steep prices of game consoles – a factor that hampers their quick uptake by consumers – game developers have rushed in to satiate people’s gaming needs by leveraging social media. Their gamble has paid off well. While connecting with friends and family on Instagram, Facebook, and MySpace, it has been found that people spend almost 50% of the time playing online games by themselves or with an opponent on social media. 

This trend reveals that the global market for social gaming has gained unprecedented traction. Going forward, the market is slated to expand at a cracking pace to reach a staggering US$17.40 bn by 2019. 

Developers Constantly Pushing the Envelope by Creating Different Games 

That a growing crop of smartphone-toting people are providing a fillip to the global market for social gaming is anyone’s guess. Studies show that the number of monthly active users for social games was over 200 million in 2012 and that number would likely double by 2019. While numbers increase, it also ups the pressure on social game developers to retain their consumer base by creating more engaging content. Hence, they are constantly tinkering and redesigning to launch more innovative games and prevent users from getting bored. Game publishers are coming up with games belonging to different genres, namely casino games, sport role playing games, virtual villages, social role playing games, ownership games, etc. Among them, casino and virtual village games have been breakout successes. 

The main source of revenue for social game developers are advertisements. Besides, the in-game sale of virtual goods and lead generation/offers also helps them rake in revenue. The revenue made via advertisements is predicted to increase at a good clip in the near future. The virtual goods segment is expected to exhibit a robust growth in demand too over the coming years. Demographically, women and individuals in the age group of 19 to 25 years have emerged as the dominant end users of social games. 

Asia Pacific Leads the Market on Account of Large Population 

Asia Pacific is the dominant regional segment in the global gaming industry and thereby leads the global market for social gaming. A large population, increased internet connectivity, and growing disposable income of the people in the region have boosted the market substantially. The rising GDP of Southeast Asian economies such as Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia has led to maximum market growth in the regions. Same is the case with Japan, South Korea, and India. On account of low operating costs and abundant skilled resources for developing and testing new products, experts predict, the region stands a high chance of becoming the hub of social gaming.  

In Asia Pacific, the ban on social networking sites in China, however, has to some extent hobbled the growth of the market. Same is the case in the Middle East. Other major markets for social gaming are North America and Europe. In North America, app-based social gaming contributed to a lion’s share in revenue in the U.S. and Canada. 

Some of the prominent players in the industry are Electronic Arts Inc., Social Point, Booyah Inc., Renren Inc., Zynga, and Wooga GmbH. Among them, Zynga topped the global market for social gaming in 2012 and is predicted to maintain its stronghold in the years to come.

Though video games are highly attractive, console-based video games are available at a price the common man can’t afford. However, most social gaming sites are free to join and feature free gambling, village setting, and other games. Today’s generation spends a major chunk of its time on social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace to socialize with their family and friends. According to Facebook statistics, there are over 500 million active Facebook users and half of them log into the website every day. Collectively, more than 700 billion minutes are spent on Facebook each month.
The platform of social media provides a lot of opportunities for monetizing fun games, driven by the large population base that accesses these websites. People spend around 50% of their time on social gaming sites competing with their friends and colleagues. Companies in the social gaming market are tapping into this opportunity to launch new fun games that can be accessed by players on the go.
The report on the global social gaming market provides a clear picture of the competitive framework of this industry. Furthermore, the report collates market data using Porter’s Five Forces analysis, market attractiveness analysis, value chain evaluation, and market share analysis.
Overview of the global social gaming market
Apart from the rapidly growing user base, the global social gaming market also benefits from the increase in global smartphone usage, easy accessibility, and the rise of free-to-play games. Moreover, improvement in browser experience and the accelerating trend of cloud computing is driving the social gaming market. However, factors such as bans on social networking sites in some countries and institutions will hamper the growth of this market.
Nevertheless, the global social gaming market will expand at a marked 16.1% CAGR during the forecast period of 2013 to 2019. In 2012, the global social gaming market was worth US$5.40 billion and is predicted to reach a total market value of US$17.40 billion by 2019.
The top three revenue sources of the free social gaming market include advertisements, game-related virtual goods, and lead generation offers. The game-related virtual goods sector is expected to demonstrate the fastest growth, at a 15.2% CAGR, during the forecast period. The age group of 19-25 years held the largest market share in the global social gaming industry in 2012.
Geographically, the global social gaming market is divided into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World (RoW). In 2012, Asia Pacific stood out as the largest consumer base for the global social gaming market, due to the contributions of highly populated economies such as China and India.
Companies mentioned in the research report 
Zynga ruled the global social gaming market in 2012. Zynga Poker’s move into the social media sector brought them around 400,000 concurrent players, which allowed them to hold the monopoly in the niche social gaming and gambling market. Electronic Arts (EA), Playdom, Crowdstar, Renren, Rovio, and Tencent are the other prominent players in the market.
Major geographies analyzed under this research report are: 
  • Europe
  • North America 
  • Asia-Pacific 
  • Rest of the World 
This report gives you access to decisive data such as:
  • Market growth drivers 
  • Factors limiting market growth
  • Current market trends 
  • Market structure
  • Market projections for the coming years 
Key highlights of this report
  • Overview of key market forces propelling and restraining market growth 
  • Up-to-date analyses of market trends and technological improvements 
  • Pin-point analyses of market competition dynamics to offer you a competitive edge
  • An analysis of strategies of major competitors 
  • An array of graphics and SWOT analysis of major industry segments 
  • Detailed analyses of industry trends
  • A well-defined technological growth map with an impact-analysis 
  • Offers a clear understanding of the competitive landscape and key product segments

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Social Gaming Market

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