Understand and master the concept of betting value
Understanding and mastering the concept of betting value is extremely critical because you’ll most likely end up wasting plenty of money on sports betting and not earn anything in its absence. Nothing denying that you may be very sure and a definite favourite with odds of 1.45 from a reputed online casino, but what you need to understand is if those odds actually hold any sort of value or not. Many times we can hear casual gamblers mumbling, “There’s no way that this team/player will lose this match!” Placing bets with this attitude and mind frame is quite similar to saying that an overpriced £ 3000 television is a good deal simply because you really love it and want to have it in your living room!
In fact majority of the betting population, for instance who bet online/offline at places like Bet365 doesn’t have an idea about the simple concept of betting value. And thankfully so! It’s actually this ‘square’ or ‘naïve’ money which can heavily skew the market, providing excellent opportunities to a gambling minority who does know how to make the most of such betting value.
Moreover, if you look carefully, this is the case even with some of the most popular offline/online casino games such as slots, baccarat, poker, blackjack, roulette and more. You’ll always find people or sometimes casinos willing to throw away money as they’re unable to make the most of the edge they have. And that’s exactly where you can score big. For instance, you can apply certain strategies to figure what kind of returns can be expected from a particular slot machine. Difficult, but not impossible.
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Learn basic mathematics
Are you that guy/girl who can be often heard saying, “I’m not a numbers girl/guy but….” Well, if that’s the case you shouldn’t probably try your luck at betting either. Although there are plenty of gamblers who can make huge profits from sports betting, simply based on their gut feel and instinct, if you’re keen on succeeding in this field for the long term, you will require a workable betting plan and comprehensively understand what odds tell in terms of probabilities.
To cut the long story short, sports betting is purely a numbers game and you can’t succeed in this industry in the long term if you can’t make good friends with basic mathematics concepts like probability, multiplication, division etc. Actually, if you delve into it you’ll realise that it’s not too hard!
Learn how bookmakers set the betting odds
How bookmakers like Bet365, Betfair etc. set the betting odds depends a great deal on the popularity of the sports event. However, in most cases, sports books’ odds will more accurately be a representation of how they expect the general populace to play, instead of the real probabilities of the possible outcomes. Obviously, things aren’t so simple in the real world. But, generally speaking, sports books set the betting odds to improve betting activity on either side, in order to balance their overall liability, and pocket a handsome commission without having to incur any losses.
This leaves the smart gamblers with no option but to find good betting value opportunities, wherein the general populace may be slightly wrong. It also implies that excellent betting value can be spotted in sports events where there’s a higher-than-normal interest even of the casual and occasional sports bettor. Let’s be honest, this type of sports bettor normally knows very little or absolutely nothing about the profitable betting strategies. All popular horseracing events, Cup Finals, Super Bowl etc. are the prime candidates falling into such category.
Develop a liking for the Ugly Duck!
The more seasoned you get in the field of sports betting, you’ll come to realise that there’s plenty of value in teams that people normally don’t prefer. What more, you’ll start feeling increasingly better about potential bets on such teams, no matter how ugly they may appear on paper. All this may sound counterintuitive to you right now, but you’ll soon come to know that the less the common public likes a particular player/team, the more the value that player/team would hold for you when it comes to betting activity. This is all the more relevant in case of a player/team that may have been doing well over a period of time, but may have lately started experiencing a bad run of 3 to 4 games. It’s not uncommon for the general public to quickly jump off such teams, and see a simultaneous rise in their betting value.
Never dwell on the happenings of the past and never prolong the present celebrations
It’s very important in sports betting that you never allow your recent losing streak to push you off your sports betting game. You must quickly throw all such losses outta your mind and stay true to your betting analysis. It’s important to have faith in your chosen team/player. The wheel will definitely turn! In the same way, never let the recent winning run of a team give you a false sense of courage, making you overextend your betting activity. We stress again, you must always stay true to your original analysis and strictly follow the original path you had decided.
Never bet blindly in the hope for a big score
When it comes to accumulators, teasers, parlays, accas, multi-bets, or whatever you want to call them, you should know when to stay away from them and when to get aggressive with them. Nothing denying that they offer a huge promise; that massive payday you’ve always been waiting for. However, unless you’ve done your homework well and have spotted good betting value, all such bets can be the sure shot recipe for a bankroll disaster.
Let’s look at it in a different way.
Let’s assume you’ve placed a multi bet of 4 legs at Bet365. For every leg, you’ve got full price even money decimal odds of 2.00. As a result, the odds of that particular multi bet would work out to 16.00. Now looking into a real world scenario where you’re offered betting odds of 1.90 at an online casino cum sports book, for even money (as the sports book will take 5% as his/her share), the total odds for that 4 leg multi bet would work out to 13.00, taking away as much as 19% from the full price.
But on the other hand, such multi bets can be extremely valuable if you successfully locate true value of the bet. If you do, you’ll be multiplying that value into every leg. However, the issue is - locating that true betting value. Anyone who adds a leg to a particular multi bet does so as he/she believes that he/she has successfully found value. So, when it comes to creating valuable multi bets the key is locating true betting value, else you’ll finish all your chances of succeeding with every undervalued leg you add.
Develop long term sensibility and plenty of discipline
Majority of people who get into sports betting for the first time do it with the attitude of getting rich quick. However, that’s a completely wrong approach and actually never happens. Instead, you should have a long-term strategy. The idea should be to build your bankroll over a period of time, slowly and steadily, game by game, and you’ll soon find yourself making some decent passive income, and perhaps, if you stick to this strategy for long enough, you’d be able to make a successful living out of it as well.
It also includes not necessarily indulging in it just to make things interesting. We’ve heard time and time again people saying, “Oh I place sports bets just to make matches interesting!” Alright, that’s fine. However, you can’t expect to score major long-term wins by approaching sports betting with such attitude. If you’re really keen on making things interesting, you’d be better off joining some fantasy league or some tipping competition wherein you’re not gambling with real money.
Build a reasonably good betting bankroll
If you really want to make good money through sports betting, you’ll need to begin with a bankroll that can easily absorb time-to-time losses. In case you wish to bet in terms of units, an average bet being of one unit, it is recommended to have a bankroll of minimum 50 units. Let’s say that you can afford a bankroll of maximum € 2000, implying that your average betting unit would be € 40 (as 50 units of € 40 equal € 2000).
Although this may not seem like a lot, please note, a € 2000 bankroll may quickly transform into a huge amount if you’re able to consistently recognise value in your bets and adopt an intelligent betting strategy. Let’s assume that you place around 200 bets per year. And each one of those bets has 1.90 odds. Your strike rate is a reasonable 54%. If we use a fractional kelly betting plan, depending on the consistency with which you win (which most likely will even out in the long term), your bankroll at the end of all those 200 sports bets, will likely be in the vicinity of € 2200. Well, you must be thinking that’s only € 200 profit per year! Well, that’s also a result of only 200 bets per year, and average returns of 2.6% from every bet.
Let’s say that you place around 400 bets per year and are successfully able to achieve reasonable 5% average returns. With these figures, your € 2000 bankroll would most likely convert into € 2800 by the end of those 400 bets. If you look at a five-year term, your eventual bankroll will swell up to around € 10,000, and around € 30,000 after 10 years (with average 600 units)
Now, that’s not bad at all!
The hardest part in all this is to consistently score those 5% returns. Furthermore, the even harder part is continuing diligently with that strategy until you successfully increase your bankroll to that level over those many years. Nevertheless, the main point we wanted to show here was that you can start out with a modest bankroll, and can turn it into huge long-term profits if you approach sports betting with a well-thought-of plan.
Have different bookmakers in your portfolio
It’s important for you to avail the best betting odds to bank on every valuable opportunity. You’d be limiting the available odds if you use no more than 1 or 2 bookmakers like Bet365, Betfair etc. This in turn may have a major impact on your long-term success in sports betting. Ideally, there should be a minimum of 6 different bookmakers in your sports betting portfolio at any given time. The bookmakers you work with should be decided based on the sports/events you wish to bet on.
In case you’re in it for the long haul, you’ll need to open accounts at reputed bookmakers like Betfair, SBOBet, Pinnacle Sports and Matchbook. Although no one bookmaker can be termed as perfect, these four are ideal for long-term betting strategy and are most likely to not place many restrictions on you.
Coming to the mainstream bookmakers now, although they’ve their critics, you must have accounts with at least 3 of them, to make the most of the best betting prices. These 3 should ideally be from reputed bookmakers such as Bet365, BetVictor, Ladbrokes and William Hill.
Maintain betting records
You cannot be a long-term success in the sports betting industry if you don’t understand the importance of maintaining betting records. If not something complex, you should at least have a spreadsheet consisting of all your bets, the corresponding odds, the wagered amounts and any comments related to those bets. Your betting activity will become very random and less disciplined in the absence of such detailed betting records. Furthermore, maintaining betting records not only helps you in staying on top of your betting profit and losses, the regular and simple activity of entering every betting details and every corresponding result will improve your betting discipline by a great deal.