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England fans turn to digital experiences ahead of Denmark semi-final

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(Image credit: Image Credit: Syda Productions / Shutterstock)

If there’s one thing England football fans find more annoying than losing (or Harry Kane missing a sitter), it’s poor-performing applications and digital services. These are the conclusions of a new report published by Cisco AppDynamics.

The company set out to find if, and how, England fans use digital tools to improve their football-watching experience, polling just over 1,000 fans ahead of the Euro 2020 semi-final against Denmark.

Cisco AppDynamics found that, for four in five (80 percent), accessing applications and digital services before, during, or right after a game is a big part of their match-day routine. For the younger audience (18-24) it’s practically unavoidable, and for many, it’s an “essential part” of the overall football experience

While England play, most fans use social media, or news and information sites, and others turn to apps to place their bets. Some fans (mostly the younger ones) will use online streaming services to watch the match, and will turn to food delivery applications and websites to stay fed and hydrated. 

And finally, just above half (51 percent) would consider their match-watching experience ruined, should these apps and digital services perform poorly.

CiscoAppDynamics added that, with lockdown still enforced across Europe, the reliance on apps and digital services has never been greater.

“Placing bets, ordering pizza and updating social media are just some of the matchday digital routines that have become essential for 61 percent of England fans as they embrace applications and digital services during the tournament,” said James Harvey, Regional CTO at Cisco AppDynamics. 

“The pandemic may have stopped many of us gathering in big groups to enjoy England’s success, but it hasn’t stopped us finding ways to connect with others and engage with brands. This means the pressure is on for the brands that fans rely on - they need to offer incredible digital experiences to users every time. This means no slow-loading pages, sites crashing or failures at the checkout. The risk to brand reputation and lost sales is significant if they fail to meet customer expectations. When it comes to performance issues, brands need to behave just like the England team, and keep a clean sheet.”