Our best tips for Sports betting
Starting up with sports betting? Let us help you with five things that we have learned the hard way ourselves! This article focuses on general advice for sports betting. These will apply whether betting on football, tennis or other sports.
Only bet when the odds is too high!
Obviously, this is the number one advice for sports betting. The goal is to find bets where the chance for a certain outcome is higher than the odds indicate. If the odds are 2.00 (or 1 to 1, also called even odds) and you believe the chance is 60 per cent, and provided you are correct in your estimate, you have a bet with positive expectation. If you make this bet 10 times, betting €10 each time, you will get a return of €20 times six = €120 for your investment of €100. That is 20 per cent theoretical profit on every bet. You can also divide your estimated chance (60) with the chance implied by the odds (50) and get 1.20. Same thing. 20 per cent return on investment. The more bets you can find like this, the better you will do in the sports betting business. Unfortunately, bets with positive expectation is hard to come by, but your goal should nevertheless be to find them. This is what professional sports bettors try to do every day.
Bet on low odds!
Most serious sports bettors choose bets that have odds around 2.00 (even odds). This provides several benefits. Firstly, low odds bets win more often than high odds bets and this is important for the psyche. Secondly, if you have two possible outcomes and both have odds of 1.95, then you simply can compare the likelihood of both outcomes and decide which is more likely. That is the bet of the two with the most value. This is easier to do than for instance evaluate if a bet with odds of 3.00 has a chance of winning greater than 33 per cent. Thirdly, betting on low odds makes it much easier to handle swings in your bankroll. Note that it is always possible to find bets at around 2.00 odds, even in matches where there is a big favourite. This is done by using handicaps (Asian or European) to give the underdog a head start. With this handicap, both teams will have about the same chance to win.
Bet on singles
Most professional sports bettors bet on one game at a time. They do not combine several matches in a bet where they need to get seven winners right in order to get a payout. The benefits are obvious: Bigger chance for a payout (remember, psyche is important in this business), it is easier to find one match that has positive expectation than finding many, and swings in your bankroll becomes much smaller.
Do not bet all your money on one game!
If you have a limited amount of money you can risk on sports betting, it makes sense to be careful with the stakes. Even if you feel extremely confident in a bet, it is probably wise not to put all your eggs in the same basket. Professional bettors use something called “bankroll management”, which are systems designed to reduce the risk of having to deposit more money.
Be an accountant!
After having decided on a strategy for how to find betting objects with positive expectation, your next move should probably be to make a simple spreadsheet or even just a word document where you can keep track of your bets. Sometime down the line, it will be useful to have some numbers on your betting activity, because you will wonder if the strategy has been successful, and how much so. If the numbers show it was not, you can make changes in your strategy and start over again.