White Label, Turnkey, and Self Service are among the most common terms you might see or hear when you begin investigating how to start an online casino. White label and turnkey solutions tend to be your main options when it comes to launching a new casino site with a readymade platform, while Self Service is a solution that tends to benefit existing iGaming operators who are interested in expanding on their offering or those who want to build a casino from scratch.
That being said, while each of these solutions have their benefits, they do differ from one to the next. As such, it helps to know the differences between them to help you decide which one is likely to work best for your particular business aspirations.
Differences between White Label, Turnkey and Self Service Software
Although each casino solution can result in success, they are not an ideal fit for every would-be or existing operator. Here’s a closer look at each and the services that they include.
- White Label – A White Label Casino is a ready-to-launch solution that comes equipped with everything you need to operate an internet casino, including the platform, license, web hosting, games, payment infrastructure, customer service and marketing. It is essentially a pre-made online franchise that you purchase form an iGaming software provider that includes all the functionalities and facilities required to operate a legitimate gambling business online. In essence, you rebrand the casino as your own to make it look like a fresh destination. If you’re curious to know more, you can learn about the White Label Solution in greater detail here.
- Turnkey – The Turnkey solution is a readymade and/or customizable solution that gives you greater flexibility and control over the casino software platform. You choose the platform’s design, structure, payment systems and license according to your preferences. These products and services are not automatically included as they are with white label software. Essentially, with a Turnkey option you are creating a self-owned casino site that you design using the readymade platform, products and services provided by the iGaming software company or other contractors you may hire, to create and operate your own unique brand. You are responsible for obtaining the necessary components for your casino (e.g. licensing, payments, marketing, etc.) according to your preferences. Learn more about Turnkey casino solutions here.
- Self Service – Unlike white label and turnkey, Self Service is more about independently building your online casino from scratch yourself or adding additional features to your existing brand. There is no readymade solution. You obtain your own gambling license and build your own casino with a team of IT experts. You take care of the design and front-end HTML coding with the help of technical documentation and a set of scripts provided by the iGaming provider offering the self service software option. This provides unlimited opportunities to develop a casino that is fully customized as you desire while the iGaming provider offers help with the back office, support during casino development, the integration of gaming content, and other services if you wish for them to be provided (e.g. customer service, hosting, payment gateway, etc.). Interested to find out more? Learn about Self Service in greater detail here.
Services included for each solution
Although not every iGaming software provider of these platforms offers the same exact products, services and features, the following is a basic idea of the different types of platform features and services that are included (or not included) and are available (or not available) for the solutions.*
|Platform Features/ Services||White Label||Turnkey||Self Service|
|Casino design||Included – Choose from standard templates (minimal changes allowed, if any)||Create your own design or obtain a custom design from the software solution provider||Create Your own design|
|Hosting||Included||Not included (but can be provided)||Not included (but can be provided)|
|Licensing||Included||Not Included (consulting services sometimes available)||Not Included (consulting services sometimes available)|
|Customizable front end||No||Yes||Yes|
|Payment systems||Included (usually multiple currencies are available as well as diverse payment methods like debit/credit cards, bank transfer, eWallets, etc. Additionally, cryptocurrency options may also be available**)||Not included (Direct contracts with payment systems available)||Not included (Direct contracts with payment systems available)|
(Usually multilingual and often includes live chat and email)
|Game integration||Included (not always the full range of games but a select offering)||Available (Usually you can choose from the full catalogue)||Available (Usually you can choose from the full catalogue)|
|Company incorporation||Included by some providers (although sometimes it is not)||Not always included (can be provided)||Not always included (can be provided)|
|Cross platform mobile solution||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Advanced reporting system||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Integrated internal CMS system||Yes||Yes||Yes|
*The above table is meant only to serve as an example and does not necessarily include all services or features that may be offered for self service, turnkey or white label software platforms. Remember that the iGaming experts who supply these solutions differ from one to the next. To find out exactly what is included in the casino solution that interests you, we highly recommend that you check out our detailed software reviews.
**If you’re interested in cryptocurrency and online gambling, you can learn more about Bitcoin casinos here.
The Benefits and Drawbacks of Each Casino Solution
The following are some of the main benefits and drawbacks of each solution. Knowing the basic pros and cons may help to paint a clear picture of which one makes the most sense to your budget, expertise and interests.
|White Label||Turnkey||Self Service|
| Instant Launch|
(usually up and running in a few short months or less)
|Limited Rights, you are completely dependent on the developer||Faster to launch than building a casino from the ground up||Takes longer to launch a casino (sometimes up to a year)||Build your own casino with support every step of the way or add to your existing casino offering||Slow to launch if you are developing a casino from the ground up|
|Agreement with all third-party clients included (e.g. payments, games, customer service, etc.)||Limited flexibility - You get what you get with no real customization possible||You 100% own your casino business||You are required to obtain a license yourself, which can be a long and complex process||Unlimited functionality and front-end customization||You need to obtain your own license|
|Low cost||You don’t independently own the casino, you’re essentially renting the business from another company||You participate in all stages of development||High cost||Unlimited gamification||Cost varies depending on what you need|
|License included||You don’t have a choice where you can operate your casino business||Fully customizable platform can choose any settings||You are in charge of making decisions and need to work with third-party services directly||Back office and technical support||You are in charge of design, front-end HTML coding and must have a team of IT experts|
|Ready marketing strategy||Limited freedom – You must adhere to the marketing guidelines of the provider||Unique design||No ready-to-use marketing strategy||Use and integrate services and products offered by iGaming software professionals||You are responsible for marketing and making all decisions and working with third-party services directly|
Which Solution is Right for You?
Now that you have a better idea of what each solution is about, you may already have a solution in mind. However, if you’d like our opinion, here’s for whom TCS recommends each solution:
|White Label||Turnkey||Self Service|
|You are an entrepreneur who is new to the iGaming industry||You are an entrepreneur with sufficient capital||You want to build your own casino independently and with full control with some help and support form experts|
|You do not have a lot of capital||You want to operate your own independent online casino business||You want to add additional services to your existing casino business|
|You want to quickly launch a casino||You want a ready-made platform that you can customize||You want the freedom to make all the changes to your casino|
|You do not want to have to go through the complex process of obtaining a license and do not wish to spend a lot of time managing and maintaining your operation||You want to speed up the launch process of the casino by having a contractor take care of the development process||You have some understanding of the iGaming industry|
Of course, while we are confident in our recommendations, we highly suggest that you also trust your own instincts as well as seek the advice of other iGaming industry professionals.
Don’t hesitate to consult with those software companies who have experience launching and operating white label and turnkey casinos as well as those who are familiar with delivering a self-service option to brands seeking to grow or add to their existing casino offerings.
When you contact a company for a quote regarding a solution or service, have an idea of what you want and be as concise as possible. This will help to ensure that you receive the most valuable answers to your queries, which can support you in your efforts to find the perfect solution that will help you to obtain success. Best of luck in your endeavours!