The US Online sports betting boom shows no signs of slowing down. States like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois stand at the forefront of a mobile wagering industry that likely still hasn’t reached its peak.
Online sportsbooks operated by brands like FanDuel and BetMGM offer online wagering in more than ten states. The fierce competition among sports betting brands drives revenues in the biggest US markets.
More than a dozen states and Washington DC offered legal online sports betting at the halfway point of 2021. Even more states will join that list by the end of the year.
The Gaming Today revenue tracker focuses on legal online sports betting markets across the US. We update the tracker every two weeks with the latest revenue numbers reported by state gaming regulators.
Mobile Vs. Retail Betting Handle June 2021
*Online-only sports betting markets
**Tribal retail sports betting revenue not available for Michigan
***June revenue for Illinois not yet available
Betting handle figures represent the total amount wagered across all bets at a sportsbook. More than any other metric, state betting handle presents the best way to gauge the viability of a sports betting market.
Since sports betting legalization started to spread across the US in 2018, New Jersey has set the benchmark for online sports wagering success. That trend continued in June 2021, with New Jersey’s online sportsbooks leading the nation in mobile betting handle.
Online sports bettors placed just under $683 million in wagers in the Garden State in June. New Jersey ranked as the No. 1 overall US sports betting market in June, with just under $769 million in combined retail and mobile handle. Mobile sportsbooks took 89% of all bets placed in New Jersey in June.
Nevada remains the most viable retail sports betting market in the nation by a wide margin. The state’s land-based sportsbooks took $231.2 million in bets in June. Nevada’s online sports betting apps still outperformed their retail counterparts, however, generating $314.3 million in handle.
Mobile Sports Betting Revenue June 2021
*June revenue for Illinois not yet available
Sportsbook win percentage fluctuates from month to month, but in the long term, a successful market produces substantial revenue for operators and tax revenue for the state.
New Jersey took its usual spot as the revenue winner among US states in June. Online sportsbooks in the Garden State pulled $62,189,286 million in adjusted revenue. Pennsylvania ($29,288,710 in June revenue) comes in second on this list for now, but pending June numbers from Illinois could push Pennsylvania down to the No. 3 spot.
Indiana ($23,385,853) came up just short of breaking the state’s monthly online sports betting revenue record in June. Only January 2021 was a stronger month for mobile wagering in the Hoosier State.
Pennsylvania, Indiana, Michigan, Tennessee, and Virginia all brought in more online sports betting revenue than Nevada in June. While Nevada still stands as the undisputed champion of land-based gaming in the US, several other states have surpassed it in terms of online sports betting revenue.
Mobile Sports Betting State Tax Revenue June 2021*
*Based on available information; some states don’t report taxable mobile sports betting revenue
US states that legalize online gambling do so with potential tax revenue in mind. Mobile sports betting revenue tax rates vary significantly among different states.
Pennsylvania’s 36% tax on mobile sports betting revenue generally puts the Keystone State ($9.958 million in June tax revenue) at the top of the monthly tax earnings chart. New Jersey taxes online sports betting revenue at a much lower 13%, but the state’s massive revenue numbers generated more than $8 million in taxes for the state in June.
Tennessee’s online-only sports betting business model produced $3.2 million in taxes for the state in June, while Virginia took $2.27 million in taxes from online sports betting.
2021 Aggregate Mobile Sports Betting Handle (Top US Markets)
New Jersey leads all US markets in terms of online sports wagering handle. Mobile sports betting apps in the Garden State are on pace to generate around $9 billion in wagers this year.
By comparison, New Jersey’s nation-leading online sports betting industry produced just over $6 billion in handle in 2020. That figure will increase significantly in 2021 if the current pace keeps up through the end of the year.
Illinois takes the No. 2 spot among US mobile sports betting markets, followed by Pennsylvania. Nevada hosts the nation’s largest land-based sports betting market, but falls behind New Jersey, Illinois, and Pennsylvania in terms of mobile sports wagering handle.
Some of the newest US markets (Michigan, Virginia, Tennessee) have emerged as legitimate sports betting powerhouses right out of the gate. Tennessee launched mobile sports betting in November 2020, while both Michigan and Virginia debuted online sportsbooks in January 2021.
2020 Sports Betting Handle (Top US Markets)
New Jersey set the gold standard in US sports betting in 2020, driven by the most prolific mobile sports betting market in the nation. New Jersey sportsbooks took more than $6 billion in bets over the course of the year.
$5.53 billion of that figure came from mobile sports betting apps. Online sportsbooks generated 91.9% of all sports bets placed in New Jersey in 2020.
Nevada reigns supreme as the epicenter of retail sports betting in the US. While COVID-19 shutdowns affected casino operations throughout parts of the year, Nevada’s land-based sportsbooks generated $1.86 billion in betting handle in 2020.
Despite the viability of sportsbooks on the Las Vegas Strip, mobile wagers accounted for 56.5% of overall handle in Nevada.
Pennsylvania ended the year as the No. 2 online sports betting market in the US and No. 3 overall in the country. Illinois, Indiana, and Colorado round out the top six US sports betting markets by handle for 2020.
2020 Aggregate Mobile Sports Betting Handle (Top US Markets)
New Jersey stayed atop the legal sports betting industry throughout 2020. Pennsylvania’s flourishing online sports betting market puts in a position to compete with Nevada as the No. 2 sports betting market in the US.
Illinois debuted online sports betting in June, and by the end of the year, the Land of Lincoln overtook Colorado and Indiana in 2020 betting handle. Illinois sportsbooks generated $1.88 billion in handle, with mobile sports betting apps accounting for 95.6% of bets.
Colorado, which launched sports betting in May, finished the year as the No. 6 sports betting market in the US. More than any other state, Colorado’s sports betting industry relies on mobile wagering. Online sportsbooks represented 98.4% of total handle in Colorado in 2020.
2020 Sports Betting Revenue (Top US Markets)
New Jersey nearly cleared the $400 million mark in 2020 sports betting revenue. COVID-19 forced Atlantic City casinos to close from mid-March through the end of June, with the casinos only allowed to operate at 25 percent capacity through the end of the year.
The restricted access to retail sportsbooks didn’t stop New Jersey’s sports betting industry from realizing enormous success in 2020. The state’s mobile sports betting apps produced $359.4 million in revenue, accounting for 90.5% of all sports betting revenue for the year.
Nevada operates as the only top-six US sports betting market where retail sports betting revenue exceeds mobile earnings. Online sportsbook performance drove Pennsylvania to the No. 2 market share spot in the US by revenue.
Illinois, Indiana, and Colorado all host sports betting markets driven by mobile wagering. The newest arrivals to the 2021 sports betting landscape, Michigan and Virginia, will likely experience the same pattern.
2020 Aggregate Sports Betting Revenue (Top US Markets)
New Jersey led the US legal sports betting charge wire-to-wire throughout 2020. Illinois launched mobile sports betting in June, and ended up as a top-five revenue market by the end of the year.
Each of the nation’s top five sports betting markets (New Jersey, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois) generated at least $125 million in 2020. The end-of-year revenue figures for the end of 2021 will likely top the benchmarks set in 2020 as the US sports betting industry continues to boom.
2020 Mobile Sports Betting State Tax Revenue (Top US Markets)
Pennsylvania’s place at the top of the state tax revenue list comes as no surprise. The Keystone State taxes gross sports betting revenue at 36%, the highest rate of any state with legal sports wagering.
New Jersey (13% tax on mobile sports betting revenue) brought in $46.7 million in sports betting taxes, a testament to the success of the state’s online sportsbooks in 2020.
Illinois (15% online sports betting tax) levies the third-highest online sports betting tax rate in the US, while Indiana (9.5%) and Colorado (10%) both utilize operator-friendly tax structures.
2020 Mobile Apps Per State Comparison (Top US Markets)
|State||2020 Mobile Betting Handle||Number of different mobile sports betting apps*|
|New Jersey||$5.53 billion||21|
|West Virginia||$265.3 million||5|
*Total apps available at the end of 2020
Do more choices lead to more success for states that launch legal sports betting? All of the top mobile sports betting markets in the US offer at least five different online sportsbooks, with New Jersey topping the list at 21 mobile sports betting apps operating by the end of 2020.
New Jersey’s spot atop the US sports betting market is no doubt at least somewhat driven by the diversity of the market. FanDuel and DraftKings stand as market leaders in virtually all states in which they operate, but the US sports betting boom also includes the rise of several other brands.
William Hill, BetRivers, BetMGM, and PointsBet all operate in several US states. Other platforms, like FOX Bet and WynnBET, will likely expand in the US as the sports betting industry continues to grow.
Several land-based casinos operate in-house branded sportsbooks. New Jersey’s mobile sportsbooks include such platforms from Golden Nugget, Borgata, Resorts, and several others.