Skip to content

Study: Who Are America’s Biggest Gamblers?

Biggest gambling states in the US
Ad disclosure

Gambling in the US is big business. Despite gambling laws constantly changing, with every state having its own rules and regulations, Americans have a huge interest in betting – and that’s not going away.

But who are the biggest gamblers in the US by state?

The team at Casino Professor analysed the latest search data to find out which American states have the most interest in gambling online. To do this, we used Google Keyword Planner to consider the interest in over 150 different keywords and phrases related to online betting and gambling in each of the 50 states over the last 12 months.

The US states that gamble the most

A table showing the US states that like to gamble the most. The rankings are based on Google searches related to betting per 1000 people.

StateRankNumber of searchesSearches per Capita
New Jersey41,005,120108
South Carolina7523,08097
New York91,664,04085
Rhode Island1882,32075
North Carolina19809,88075
New Hampshire21101,76073
West Virginia22128,28072
North Dakota3148,84062
South Dakota3948,12052
New Mexico4391,44043

Top 10 states with the most interest in gambling (per 1000 residents):

  1. Nevada
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Michigan
  4. New Jersey
  5. Pennsylvania
  6. Mississippi
  7. South Carolina
  8. Kansas
  9. New York
  10. Ohio

States with the least interest in gambling (per 1000 residents):

  1. Idaho
  2. Oklahoma
  3. Arkansas
  4. Utah
  5. Oregon
  6. Montana
  7. Alaska
  8. New Mexico
  9. Texas
  10. Washington

Top 10 states with the highest overall number of gambling searches:

Top 10 US states for the most gambling searches

In our comprehensive analysis of online gambling interests across the United States, the data collected reveals a significant variance in search volumes among different states, indicating a diverse level of engagement and interest in gambling activities.

California leads the chart with a remarkable search volume of 2,295,120, showcasing the state’s heightened interest in gambling, followed by New York and Florida, with search volumes of 1,664,040 and 1,414,200, respectively.

Texas closely trails with a search volume of 1,407,480. Other states showing considerable interest include Pennsylvania, Michigan, New Jersey, Illinois, Ohio, and Massachusetts, with their search volumes ranging from 1,267,920 down to 926,880.

This dataset not only underscores the geographical disparities in gambling interest within the United States but also reflects the substantial engagement levels in these top 10 states, potentially offering insights for market analysis and regulatory considerations related to gambling activities.

Nevada leads the way, with recent law changes having a big impact

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Nevada had the most interest in gambling out of all the American states. Home to the gambling capital of the world in Las Vegas, there were 133 searches per capita here, demonstrating how gambling is ingrained in the culture of the region.

There was also a strong interest in gambling from areas that have benefitted from recent law changes. For example, Massachusetts was just behind Nevada with 132 searches per capita after the legalisation of online sports betting in 2023. Michigan completed the top 3 with 124 searches per capita, following online casino and online sports betting sites entering the state in 2021.

Online gambling restrictions make their mark

States where online gambling is prohibited have the least interest in betting. For example, Idaho had just 30 searches per capita which was the lowest of all the 50 states. Oklahoma and Arkansas were not far in front with 31 searches per capita for both.

These results are not surprising considering residents are not being exposed to gambling as much. In all likelihood, interest levels would increase if online betting was legalised – but that seems some way off.

High interest in most populous states

The US states with the highest populations had the most gambling-related searches overall. However, what’s interesting is that this is despite online gambling not being legal, or at least partially legal, in many of them.

For example, there were over 2,295,120 searches from California for online gambling in the last 12 months. This data spans the 150 different keywords we looked at, with the true volume likely to be higher. All of this occurred despite online gambling currently being outlawed in California.

NOTE: Always check your state’s current rules before deciding if you want to play yourself. Partaking in online gambling where this is illegal could see you charged with a misdemeanor.


We used Google Keyword Planner to analyse 150 different keywords related to gambling. This includes but is not limited to:

  • “NFL Odds”
  • “Horse betting”
  • “Superbowl odds”
  • “best betting sites”
  • “betting sign up offers”
  • “gamble online”

The total search volume for the last 12 months was then used to create a ranking per capita (1000 residents) to find which states were most and least interested in Gambling. population data was used to create the ranking.

Data correct as of 25/03/2024.