Gamblers Connect – iGaming Voice by Yeva
Gjorgje Ristikj, the Founder and CEO of Gamblers Connect, recently spoke with AffPapa about the features that set the affiliate apart from its competitors, how the firm recognizes biased information, and what the future of crypto looks like for iGaming.
Yeva: How did you start Gamblers Connect? What inspired you to go down that route of assisting players to navigate the world of iGaming?
Back in 2009, when I entered the iGaming industry with my first affiliate website www.pokermacedonia.net, it was always my goal to assist the players with my experience in Poker, and one of these ways was the organization of the first online Macedonian Poker League. After years of experience as both an Affiliate Manager and an Affiliate in all verticals of the online gambling industry, I decided to start Gamblers Connect together with my friends and thus create a website that will cover all aspects of the Casino Affiliate Industry.
Yeva: With so many affiliate websites on the market, what do you think attracts players to yours?
Thanks to the simplicity of the entire website, players can easily find all the necessary information in a short time, ranging from iGaming News and Casino Guides to Reviews of Casinos, Slots, etc. Besides, I think that the placement of our unique sections like Responsible Gambling and Complaints, which we prioritize over all other sections, are reserved for the best positions in the main menu because our goal is always to help the players, and I believe that this is what makes us stand out from the competition and attract new players.
Yeva: Tell us about your new Responsible Gambling section on your website. What is its purpose, and who is it intended for?
We created the section with the purpose to be one of the most important on our website. With this section, I hope that we will be able to prevent gambling addiction before it occurs, give the players an opportunity to educate themselves with our helpful articles as well as provide the proper gambling assistance for the family or friends of the players. This is why I take special pride in introducing the Responsible Gambling section to our dear audience.
Yeva: There is huge competition in the market and websites can sometimes be overloaded with biased information. How does your team distinguish biased information in the research process? Do you also take into account player reviews?
My SEO team conducts detailed analysis in literally every aspect of the iGaming Operators. First, we check the security and transparency of the casino, i.e. whether the operator is properly regulated. Next, we screen the Terms & Conditions, searching for any hidden fees or regulations. Afterward, we look at the deposit and withdrawal methods, the bonuses and promotions, as well as the entertainment, which is what attracts the players the most. We even take note of the visual aspect of the operator, being that first impressions are everything in this line of work. Moreover, for every change in the rules and the conditions of the promotions, we immediately receive a notification from the Affiliate Managers, so that we can update the promotion and give our players nothing but the latest information in real-time. We also have our own personalized Casino Brand form which we send to the Affiliate Manager so that they can fill it in with all the necessary information regarding their brand.
Yeva: We can see that you’ve shortlisted crypto casinos on your affiliate website. What do you think is the future of crypto in general and what changes do you think it will bring to the iGaming ecosystem?
As online gambling gains traction and expands, so does crypto takes over the iGaming market. This means the opening of new possibilities and opportunities for the iGaming industry, where Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies will become the dominant digital payment traffic on online gambling sites worldwide. There are several reasons why the players actually prefer cryptocurrencies over fiat currencies, and some of these reasons are anonymity and simplicity, as well as the lack of fees and bank interference. Lastly, even the Operators and the Affiliates benefit from crypto as well, being that this way it is much easier for them to get their commissions from their earnings.
Yeva: You have a section on your website dedicated to “blacklisted operators”. We noticed your statement on the same page that you believe in second chances. Is it ever possible to forgive an operator who has violated the terms of your contract? Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve “forgiven” an operator?
This section is good from two aspects. In addition to warning players to avoid these operators and have them not create an account at Blacklisted Casinos, it is my opinion that it helps the iGaming Operators in the long run since it gives them a chance to improve, change the terms, make overdue payments to players and consequently change the status from a Blacklisted Casinos to an approved casino.
Unfortunately, until now, we haven’t had such a case. But I do hope that in time these operators will realize that they have to be transparent, otherwise they will not be able to survive in the competitive iGaming industry for long.
Yeva: You were named “Casino Affiliate of the Year” during the AffPapa iGaming Awards. Congrats on that once again! How do awards like this impact the motivation of the team?
Ever since we started Gamblers Connect, we believed that we could make an Affiliate website that would be recognized by the global iGaming community as a quality project with quality content. Winning the award only gave us further motivation, new ideas, and positive pressure to justify this great honour and continue even better in the upcoming period. Many thanks to Affpapa for recognizing the quality of our work, we really appreciate it.
Yeva: We know a lot of time has passed since you first started paving your way into the market. So, we’d like to come up with a hypothetical question. What would you recommend to your younger self making his first steps in the iGaming industry?
I don’t think I would change many things, considering that when you are younger you need to make certain mistakes to progress gradually and mature in any industry, not just ours. However, I would definitely recommend my younger self to make a lot of connections at the very beginning and to take every opportunity to learn something new from every person in the iGaming business.
Yeva: Tell us a bit about yourself as a person. What are your hobbies and main goals in life and regarding business?
My hobbies are reading books and cycling. These two hobbies help me to calm my mind and give me focus. Also, I’m a huge foodie. My friends and I love trying new restaurants in my hometown. I love discovering new foods and cuisines, and it’s also a great activity to share with friends.
My main goal in life is to live a meaningful and fulfilling life. As far as the business goes, my goal is clear: to continue working on different, exciting, and new projects in the iGaming Industry, and of course, for Gamblers Connect to continue to develop and become one of the best Affiliate websites in the iGaming world.
Company: Gamblers Connect
Interviewee: Gjorgje Ristikj