There are a number of different ways to place wagers on sporting events. These include using bookmaking shops or telephone betting services. Since the development of the internet, sports betting online has become incredibly popular. Indeed, the most common way for people to bet on sports today is via the web.
There are literally hundreds of sports betting sites where you can place your wagers online. Most of the traditionally large bookmakers and sportsbooks operate sites, and there has also been many new companies enter the marketplace too. Using these sites is far and away the most convenient way to bet on sports, and offers several other advantages too. And it’s really easy to get started. You just need to choose a site, set up an account, and deposit some funds. Then you’re ready to go.
Not everyone is familiar with how online sports betting works though, despite its popularity. With this in mind, we have compiled this comprehensive guide to online sports betting. It features some useful and interesting articles, which we’ve listed below, and a step by step guide to getting started. There are also some helpful tips for betting online, and details of our recommended sites.
We’ve already mentioned how placing your bets online is easy. It is, in fact, the easiest way to bet – by quite some distance. There are many sports betting sites on the web and they are mostly really simple to use. With the more recent development of mobile betting sites, you can even place wagers using your smartphone or other mobile device.
However, there are still many people who are reluctant to give online sports betting a try. This is often simply because they don’t really know how to get started. If this sounds like you, the following step by step guide should help you through the process.
Step1Choose a Suitable Site
Once you have decided to try online sports betting, the very first thing you need to do is choose which site to use. You could be forgiven for thinking this is the easy part, but it really isn’t. The sheer number of sites available means it is something of a challenge to pick one that is right for you.
You could simply pick one at random of course, but this is not a good approach. Most sites are perfectly safe and trustworthy, but they are not all of the same standard. You really want to choose one of the best, and also make sure that it’s suitable for your own needs. This means putting some thought into the decision of where to bet.
Here are some of the questions you should try to answer before making this decision.
Is the site reputable?
Does it cover all the sports you want to bet on?
Are your preferred deposit options available?
Can you deposit and bet in your local currency?
Do the minimum or maximum deposits/stakes suit your bankroll?
Can you bet from your mobile device?
What are the bonuses and rewards like?
Is live betting available?
Are the odds and lines competitive?
There are not the only questions to ask, but they cover the biggest factors that you might want to take into account. Not all of these factors will apply of course, depending on your preferences, but most of them are worth considering.Perhaps the easiest way to select a site is simply to take a look at our recommended sports betting sites. We have ranked the leading sites in several different categories, including the following.
We’ve ranked the best sites by region too. This is because the right site for an American, for example, might not be the right site for a European. We’ve also written detailed reviews of all the sites that we recommend, so you can find out exactly what they all have to offer before selecting one to join. You view all our rankings and all our reviews on the following pages.
Having chosen where to bet, the next step is to open an account. This is neither difficult nor time consuming. All you have to do is visit the homepage of the site you want to join, and look for a button or link that says “join now” or something similar. Most sites display these buttons and links in obvious spots, so they’re not hard to find.
Having clicked on the button or link, you’ll be taken to a signup page. Here you’ll have to enter a few personal details. Typically, the following will be required.
Date of Birth
You may also have to choose a username and password, although these are automatically generated at some sites. If you do have to choose them, please make sure that they are hard to guess. It’s unlikely that someone will gain unauthorized access to your account, but you don’t want to make it easy for any potential hackers.
Step3Make a Deposit
With an account opened you’re almost ready to start betting. There’s one more step to go though, and that’s depositing some funds. Again, this is an easy process. Look for a button or link that says “cashier”, “deposit funds”, “my account”, or something along those lines.
There will usually be choice of methods for making a deposit, such as the following.
E-wallets (Neteller, Skrill, PayPal etc.)
Money Transfer (Western Union, MoneyGram etc.)
To make a deposit, you simply have to select which method you want to use and then enter the relevant details. Funds will typically be transferred for immediate use. When making an initial deposit at a site, remember to check if there’s a signup bonus available. There may be an extra step or two you have to take to claim it, such as entering a bonus code for example, so be sure to follow any instructions carefully.
You can start placing wagers now that you have a fully funded betting account. As with all the other steps in this guide, this is usually very straightforward. Most sites display a list of different sports, and clicking on each sport will bring up a list of the currently available betting markets. The selections for each market will be displayed along with their odds.Once you’ve made a selection, it will be added to the betting slip. You must then enter the amount you wish to stake and confirm the bet. The appropriate amount of funds will be deducted from your account at that point. Successful wagers will be paid out automatically, straight into your betting account.
Tips & Advice for Online Betting
The following tips and advice will help to ensure that you have a positive online betting experience. None of them will guarantee you win any money of course, as there simply are no guarantees in that regard, but they can improve your overall chances. Perhaps more importantly, they’ll simply help you to enjoy yourself.
Set a Budget
This piece of advice is extremely important, and applies to all forms of gambling whether online or offline. It’s possible easier to get carried away when gambling online though, so the setting of a budget really is vital. The actual size of the budget doesn’t matter per se, but it should absolutely be an amount that you can afford to lose.It’s obviously also important to then stick to the set budget. We offer some advice on the best ways to do this in our article on managing your money in sports betting.
Compare Odds & Lines
You should always be looking to get the best possible value from your wagers, and that means finding the best possible odds and lines. This is easy to do online, as sites advertise the odds and lines they offer for all their betting markets. So all you need to do is shop around, and find the best option for each wager you want to place.This is one reason why it’s advisable to have accounts at more than one betting site.
Read the Rules
The rules relating to most wagers are relatively straightforward, but they can vary a little from one site to the next. You should always be fully aware of all the rules for any wagers that you place, so that you know exactly what will happen in any given outcome. If you don’t know the rules, then it’s not really possible to determine whether a wager is worth placing or not.It’s also important to read the terms and conditions relating to a bonus or promotional offer. Many an online bettor has missed out some extra value simply by not completely understanding the terms of a bonus or promotion. That’s not a mistake you want to make.
Try Live Betting
Another big advantage of betting online is that it provides the opportunity to try live betting, or in-play betting. This is where you can place wagers on events while they are actually taking place, rather than beforehand. Live betting is enormous fun, very exciting, and offers even more chances for making some money.Check out our live betting guide for more information.
Withdraw Some Winnings
If all goes according to plan then you should find that there are some winnings in your online account at some point. It’s usually advisable to withdraw at least some of them when this is the case. There’s nothing wrong with using profits to grow your bankroll too, but it’s nice to actually have something to show for your success.Don’t withdraw everything and spent it all straightaway though. There may be times where you hit a bad patch, and results don’t go your way. It’s nice to have a bit of extra money to fall back on when this is the case.
Look Out for Special Offers
Many sports betting sites frequently run special offers and promotions. These can come in a variety of different forms, such as enhanced odds or cashback on certain wagers for example. They are well worth looking out for, as they often provide some worthwhile extra value.Sites generally give you the option to subscribe to a newsletter, or to receive regular updates regarding special offers and promotions. Make sure that you take this option, as it’s the easiest way to keep track of what’s available and avoid missing out.