Basic fundamentals

What is a bookmaker?

A bookmaker offers customers the chance to bet on the outcome of sporting events. Customers deposit money securely and then choose a particular stake size for a chosen sports betting market.

A bookmaker trading team sets the odds and customers can choose to bet before a sporting event has started or alternatively when the match has gone In-Play.

What is a bet?

A bet is a financial transaction where you stake your money on the outcome of a sporting event. You find a betting market and accompanying odds where you think you can yield a profit, while you also nominate a stake size.

When the sporting event has finished, the bookmaker will settle your bet. If it’s a winning selection, funds will be returned to your account. If you have lost your bet, the bookmaker will keep the money.

Stake, profit and loss

You can stake as little as £1 on any sporting event, while the maximum limit depends on the bookmaker and betting market in question.

Ultimately, most customers aim to make a profit when they place bets, with players starting out with small stake sizes until they work out which sports and markets can make them the most money.

Naturally, it’s possible that you will lose more than you win when it comes to sports betting, so always bet responsibly with your bookmaker of choice.

What is probability?

Probability is the chance of a particular football team or tennis player winning their particular event. The odds set by the bookmakers reflect each team’s chances of winning a football match according to their opinion.

Betting on sports is often about pitching your judgement against the bookmaker. You might think that an operator are wrong to offer big odds about a particular team winning or a player scoring the first goal. Prove them wrong to make a profit.

Betting odds explained

Most bookmakers will offer you the chance to bet in fractional or decimal odds. So 3/1 would be fractional and the decimal equivalent would be 4.00. In both instances, a stake of £10 at these odds would return a profit of £30 if your selection wins along with your stake also being returned to your account.

The bigger the odds, the greater the profit that can be enjoyed. Conversely, a bigger price means less chance of winning according to the bookmakers, although teams often win at odds of 5/1 or greater, so be on the look-out for value.

Even money or 2.00 means you can double your money on that selection if it wins, while any decimal odds of 1.99 or lower means that the selection is odds-on and there is theoretically more than 50% chance of that particular option winning.

Spread betting

Spread betting is riskier than fixed-odds and exchange betting but can also be more rewarding depending on how “right” you are when it comes to predicting the outcome of sporting events.

For example, if you think Manchester United will beat Manchester City heavily in a Premier League match, you can “Buy” United supremacy and make a profit for every goal they win by. Spread betting is an exciting way to place bets but always be aware of how much you can lose as well as win!

Why should I bet online?

Betting online is a safe and secure experience, while it offers far more convenience than having to visit a betting shop or wait in a telephone call queue to place a bet with an operator.

It means you can place a bet within seconds of accessing a bookmaker website, while all operators also facilitate mobile betting which means you can place wagers on the move.

Online betting also allows you to bet In-Play on the latest football, tennis or basketball match, which means the odds are constantly updating in real time. It’s an exciting way of betting which is growing in popularity all the time.

Finally, there are also live streaming opportunities available with several bookmakers which means you can log into your account and watch a football or tennis match and enjoy the games being live streamed with accompanying In-Play odds.