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Let’s Play, Belgium! Esports & Gaming in Belgium 2022

Esports accelerates its development in Belgium

Belgium is still considered to be a developing esports market rather than a frontrunner in the European esports landscape, but consumer awareness and interest is growing, reveals Deloitte’s. Let’s Play, Belgium! survey. The reach of esports in Belgium is 37%, which is a significant increase of more than 10 percentage points compared to last year. Yet, monetisation remains an issue. If esports companies work together, they can enhance Belgian consumer engagement and boost profits.

Let's Play! 2022 - Europe

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Let's Play! 2021
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Awareness reaches 81%

Esports awareness increased in Belgium with 81% of consumers aware of the term in 2022 compared to 78% in 2021, yet only 37% can correctly define it. This is slightly lower than the EU average of 86% term awareness and 41% definition awareness. 

In the last six months, 20% of Belgian consumers have watched esports, with an average consumption of 473 minutes per week or 68 minutes a day, almost as long as is spent on social networks (105 minutes per day), but still lower than EU average (80 minutes per day).

64% of esports audience is male

Belgian esports viewers are mainly young men (64% being male, and 55% being millennials and 31% Gen Zs). They tend to use free and paid subscription services frequently, with 63% using paid digital services a lot compared to 33% of the general population. In addition, Belgian esports viewers watch other professional sports more often than the rest of the population (54% compared to 29%) and attend more live events (60% compared to 36%).

Commercially-engaged and regular viewers are often more educated, but the overall viewer base has very diverse education levels, highlighting the accessibility of esports for all.

Streaming platforms dominate in esports

Despite the efforts of traditional media, Belgian esports viewers increasingly use streaming platforms which become gatekeepers of esports content.

Twitch and YouTube Gaming are the most used platforms in Belgium, with a reach of 58%. Nevertheless, Twitch excels over YouTube Gaming with three times more usage time. TV broadcasts attract occasional viewers
but score poorly in terms of viewing time, with an average consumption duration nine times lower than Twitch.

Monetisation lags behind

Belgian esports viewers spend €17 a month on average on esports-related activities. Almost half of their spend is on live events (incl. ticketing), while approximately 20% is spent on merchandising and 15% on paywalled

Besides esports, gaming remains popular

Although the share of attention of esports in Belgium has grown, gaming remains popular. Seventy-nine percent of Belgians are aware of video games, 46% play them, and 33% do it on a regular basis. They play video games on average 648 minutes per week, or 92 minutes per day, almost as long as is spent on social networks (105 minutes per day), but still lower than EU average of 126 minutes per day. Belgians spend €18 on gaming-related purchases each month, with half of it being for full games copies.

Similarly to esports viewers, the audience is young, diverse, and consumes many paid digital services. However, 42% of Belgian gamers are women, compared to 36% for esports. Interestingly, only 43% of gamers watch
esports, while 84% of esports viewers also practice gaming, highlighting the differences between these two sectors.

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