The global rise of legal sports betting has introduced millions around the world to this most historic of pastimes. However, many of these new players are also finding out that this hobby has quite a steep learning curve. If you are not familiar with how legal online sports betting works, the terminology used by online betting platforms, and how to set yourself up for success, at first glance, getting started might seem to be a daunting task.
In this short article, we will give you some of the most important sports betting tips you need to keep in mind when you are just getting started. Who knows, armed with a little bit of knowledge, you might just be able to turn those free sports bets into winning wagers!
So, if you want to set yourself up for success, keep reading for five sports betting tips taken straight from the professionals.
Tip 1: Don’t be afraid to shop around
In much the same way that you wouldn’t buy a new TV, a new car or any other major purchase before checking out the different deals that are available, you should always shop around before signing up with a sports betting platform.
As sports betting has gotten more and more popular and the regulatory environment has improved, the number of betting platforms has exploded. Now, sports betting fans have thousands to choose from.
However, not all platforms were created equally, and there can be quite significant differences between the most popular platforms in terms of the sports covered, how competitive the odds are and whether they offer welcome bonuses.
If you want to get the most out of your sports betting experience, be sure to shop around.
Tip 2: Read the fine print
To try and differentiate themselves from the other sports betting platforms out there and to entice both novice and experienced players to open an account with them, sports betting platforms have started offering an increasingly lucrative range of special offers.
This includes everything from free sports bets, cash bonuses, deposit bonuses and free spins on online casino games.
However, to limit how much money you can make from these bonuses, sports betting platforms will often attach wagering requirements.
You want to ensure that you read the small print to learn about the conditions that are attached to any bonus or reward you are hoping to take advantage of. This will help you to get the most out of your bonus without being unduly restricted.
Tip 3: Learn bankroll management and how to budget
Arguably, one of the most important skills you can learn as a sports betting fan — or any other type of gambler for that matter — is bankroll management.
As a player, your ‘bankroll’ is essentially how much money you have available to play with on any given day. If you are unlucky, your bankroll will decrease. If you get lucky and predict correctly, it will hopefully increase. However, your bankroll is not an unlimited resource.
With this in mind, your aim when betting on sports should always be to make your bankroll last as long as possible. To do this, you might need to set yourself a budget. This will set limits on how much cash you can spend before calling it quits in a particular playing session.
This will also teach you not to spend beyond your means and to wager more modestly.
Tip 4: Know how odds work
For many new players, one of the most difficult aspects of sports betting to understand is the odds.
Odds are essentially a way of expressing the perceived likelihood that a particular outcome will happen. In American sports, this is usually expressed with a plus or a minus symbol, while in European sports, it is expressed as a decimal point.
Regardless of how it is expressed, both are different ways of presenting the same information, which is the chance of an event occurring.
With American moneyline odds, this usually indicates the amount the bettor needs to wager in order to win $100 or the amount they would win for every $100 staked.
Many players find this information confusing, but it is something you should try to fully comprehend before placing your first bet.
Tip 5: Choose your sports wisely
Another solid tip to follow is that you should only ever place wagers on sports you truly understand.
Given that sports betting platforms now offer betting markets across a wide range of sports from all over the world, there is always a temptation to take advantage of these new possibilities. However, it is easy to get sucked into wagering on sports you don’t have any background or prior knowledge in.
With that said, if you want to improve your chances of winning, we would recommend sticking to sports you have a working knowledge of or to specific teams you are familiar with. This might mean sticking to combat sports such as boxing or MMA or avoiding them completely!