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Why Online Betting?

You probably tried betting with a national betting company in the supermarket, shopping mall, tobacco store or even on the Internet. The disadvantage of betting with national betting companies is that they are usually owned by the state without any competition. In general this means two things:

- Lower odds; if you win, the state owned betting company pays less money for your bet compared to online bookmakers.

- Limited pay outs: The state owned betting company will often set a maximum win, no matter how successful you bet, you will not be paid more than the maximum amount set.

- Other limits:  Some state owned companies does not let you play single bets, instead they require you to make combinations (for example 4 bets minimum at one bet)

This year over 200 online sports bookmakers will turn over approximately $58 billion. The popularity of online sports betting is set to grow even further over the next few years to the extent that the financial institution Merrill Lynch forecasts the market to be worth $170 billion by 2008. 


Choosing a bookmaker for Online Betting

There are currently more than 200 online bookmakers worldwide; online betting is one of the fastest growing businesses. So with so many bookmakers it's quite hard to compare and find the best bookmaker that meets your needs. 

Bookmakers offer various types of bets on different sports and each have different rules. Naturally each one of them offer different odds, that is you get better returns with some bookmakers than others. Some have attractive promotional offers for their new customers. Almost all reliable bookmakers' sites are available in a variety of languages. Some are easy to use, some are not. Most of them have good security measures taken.

All the bookmakers we have reviewed on betexperts are the most reliable ones of the betting industry.  All of them are established in the major European countries (like the UK or Austria) with strict regulations for the betting industry.


Opening an account

After you have chosen the bookmaker to bet with, you should follow the link to their site. We suggest you to check their rules and features and make sure that you understand them before opening an account.

As you proceed, first you will probably have to provide your personal information. After that will receive a username (or determine your own), a password and an account number.  It is important to keep a copy of this data, and keep it in a safe place (not as a soft copy).

Before you can place a bet, naturally, you should make a deposit in your account in order to bet with. Some of the bookmakers have minimum deposit requirements (usually not more than 5 euros). The most useful and common method of making deposits in your account is either by credit or debit card because there is no delay in the payment. You can also deposit your account by a bank transfer or a bank cheque. Both of these methods usually take more time (you would probably wait an average of three days) and costs more regarding banking transactions.


Placing a bet and withdrawing money

Both on the front page and bookmakers section of betexperts you can find links to some reliable online sports betting.  First you must choose a bookmaker that best suits your needs (details on bookmakers page).

When you are redirected to the bookmakers' page you will have to log on to your account (if you already have an account).  This will most often produce a pop-up window in which you must enter your personal details - username and password. (If you have not already opened an account, you must go through this procedure before placing the bet.) You must then proceed from the main page to the sport and event of your choice and then place your bet according to the odds offered.

After the bet is won (hopefully), you have two choices, either you make a new bet with your increased funds or withdraw your funds.  The most common form of withdrawing funds is using credit or debit cards. Again bank transfers and cheques can also be used.


Fixed Odds

Most common and simple form of online betting is fixed odds. Bookmakers offer fixed prices for a predetermined result or a combination of results. The odds differ for each bookmaker and are available usually 2-3 days prior each event.  For example, bookmaker A may offer odds of 9.0 on England to win the 2008 European Championship, whilst bookmaker B may offer odds of 11.0.  This means, for a bet of let's say 10 pounds, you will be paid 90 pounds from bookmaker A or 110 pounds from bookmaker B when betting on England winning the Championship!

With fixed odds, you know before-hand how much you will win or how much you may lose (actually its the stake). There are over 200 bookmakers offering this form of online betting and they cover virtually every sport wherever it takes place.


Spread betting

It is possible to make a lot of money with spread betting but on the other hand naturally it is also possible to lose a lot, even more than your initial stake ! Spread betting is the most risky type of online betting so if you are still reading this guide you probably aren't very experienced about online betting so please stay away from spread betting at least for a while...

Sports spreads are usually associated with soccer but are also available for other type of events. Bookmakers offer spreads on various issues in a soccer match, such as when the first free kick will occur. The spread is the range set by the bookmaker for the event to occur or a specific outcome.

For example assume that a bookie sets a spread of 36-40 minutes for the first goal to be scored in a soccer match. This spread is actually the bookmakers prediction of when the first goal will be scored. You will then have two options either you think the first goal will occur after 40 minutes, you buy at 40, or you think it will occur before 36 minutes you sell at 36. Each minute is counted as a point. Your stake will then be multiplied by these points after the result of the bet. If you bet €20 a point and the first goal is scored after 7 minutes the outcomes will be as follows: If you bought you lose €660 [(40-7)x€20], if you sold you win €580 [(36-7)x€20].

Spread betting is available from a number of spread betting bookmakers.  Due to its risky nature, most bookmakers want that you have enough money in your account to cover the potential losses.


Pool betting

Pool betting is usually associated with soccer. The pool is the collection of all the bets less the bookmakers commission. After the result, the pool funds is distributed among the winning customers.

The customer must make predictions for the results of the matches. They may predict more than one result per match (taking less risk), but their stake naturally rises. The returns are a lot higher than fixed odds betting, but the chances of winning are less.


Online Betting Exchange

A betting exchange is simply gathering bettors together to bet against each other rather than against a bookmaker. You have the opportunity to choose to offer odds or bet on odds offered by others. In other words you can either act as the bookmaker.

There are a handful of bookmakers offering this system. They take a small percentage commission of the bets placed, so generally the odds are slightly better as the costs are much lower.

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