When you’re a total beginner to online betting, you need to learn some fundamental concepts before you can move on to your favorite sports or online casinos. Jumping into the online betting scene without knowing how it works is a surefire way to lose your cash, so consult the information in this short guide before you do anything else.
Once you’re confident in your betting ability, you can get started by finding a sportsbook that gives you odds information. You can find sites online that give odds for all types of sports, take Fanduel’s NHL odds, for example.
Legal betting is conducted by the house. This is the term for casino and online casinos that profit off of bettors gambling in their establishment. If you’re betting on sports, the house is called the sportsbook or the bookmakers instead. Online betting typically refers to sports betting, so we’re focusing on that today.
Their job, besides entertaining gamblers, is to calculate the probability of certain results for an event. This could be a team winning a sports game or the possibility of a certain player scoring against the other side.
These establishments take odds very seriously as it is the difference between making a profit or a loss. They’ll look at the historical record of the sport, each team, and even each player, and they’ll go as deep as to gauge the fitness and conditioning of each person in the event.
Once calculated, the odds are presented to the house’s patrons. You’ll find that for most sports, they use fractional odds that look like this:
Those two Xs represent numbers that’ll tell you everything you need to know about the bet. For example, if a team has 5/1 odds of winning then they’re likely to win five times out of every six games. At 1/5 odds, however, the team is expected to win just once for every six games. How much you get is also worked out by fractional odds, so riskier bets will get you more cash if they pay off.
If you’re a fan of percentages instead, you can always figure that out by doing this:
5/1 odds can be expressed as 1 / (5 + 1) = 0.16. That’s 16%.
If you do this with the opposite, 1/5 odds, then that’s 5 / (5 + 1) = 0.83, or 83%.
Here are some common odds you’ll see:
1/1 = 50%
1/4 = 80%
4/1 = 20%
The odds also determine your payout. With a 1/1 bet, you get $1 for every $1 that you wager. With 1/4 odds then you get $1 for every $4 you bet, and the opposite arrangement at 4/1 odds.
Betting with the odds will pay off more often but with less cash. Betting against the odds will pay off less often but with more cash. It’s all about taking on acceptable risk while profiting off the bets you make. The key to betting is finding a sweet spot where you can profit while winning bets consistently.