High-risk spotlight: Fantasy sports league start-ups

Understand your market

Have you ever wanted to start a fantasy league of your own? Imagine how it would be to make money off of a website that hosts one or several leagues. If you want to take advantage of this sparsely populated industry you are in luck, it is a lot easier than one might think if you understand a few things. First, if you are going to be charging a fee understand you are entering a high-risk credit card processing market. High-risk means your industry runs a high risk of chargebacks, or regulatory attention, which banks don’t like. There is a solution to this problem, which we will detail in the next section. The next thing you should understand is that your business will only be successful if you market it. “If you build it they will come” is a nice thought for Kevin Costner movies, but it means nothing on the Internet. If you don’t get your website out there in front of people who are interested in the subject, get social media buzzing, plan and track advertisements and landing pages, and cultivate word of mouth, you won’t make any money.

Payment processing gateways and merchant accounts

To collect payments online for your business, you need to set up a merchant account and a payment-processing gateway. Fortunately for we can help you with information on a merchant account by recommending one of our many partners or contacts. We can help you connect that merchant account to one of our payment gateways, often through Authorize.Net or NMI, depending on the business. We also will help you step by step to integrate and get up and running with these tools, allowing you to make money quickly. We can also recommend payout methods such as pre-paid debit cards, so you have a way to pay once the playoffs are over.

Set up your site for fandom

Designing your website and figuring out all the specifics of running a fantasy league isn’t as easy as one-two-three, but we found some articles to help you fill in some of the blanks. While this article is somewhat simplistic, it gives some pretty good insights into the industry. Here is another article that gives some helpful information on running the site and attracting new members. Ultimately as long as you understand how to structure a fantasy league and know the appropriate amount to withhold for yourself, how much to pay out the winners and market your site, it’s a relatively simple business model.

Please note, fantasy sports is an industry that is highly regulated. You need to adhere to all federal and state laws, so please make sure you get reliable legal advice from a qualified attorney before diving in!