How To Use Free Bets Effectively

Online betting is very popular for many sports fans across the world. One aspect of sports betting many players overlook is free bets. Free bets stand out as a coveted tool for all sports bettors. These promotional offers provide an opportunity to engage with sports betting without having to risk any of your own funds.

However, to truly capitalize on their potential, understanding how to use free bets effectively is paramount. One method players can use to capitalize on free bets is matched betting. Consequently, we are going to delve into the strategy of matched betting and how it works so that you could potentially employ this tactic for yourself.

What is Matched Betting

Matched betting is a strategy used by bettors to take advantage of free bets and promotions offered by bookmakers to lock in potential profits. It involves placing two opposing bets on the same event to ensure that one portion of the bet will win regardless of the outcome. By carefully calculating the stakes and odds, matched bettors can offset any potential losses from one bet with the theoretical gains from the other, effectively unlocking the value of the free bet or promotion. Matched betting requires careful planning, attention to detail, and access to specific tools or software to identify suitable opportunities. While it may seem complex at first, matched betting has gained popularity due to it being strategic yet remaining simplified in terms of the overall concept.

How To Matched Bet

Matched betting involves several steps to ensure you can utilize free bets and promotions effectively. First, you must search for a bookmaker offering free bet promotions for new  customers. These often require you to place an initial bet to qualify for the free bet. Once you have your bookmaker of choice, you must select a sporting fixture with clear outcomes, such as a football match. Then, you must place a back bet with the bookmaker and a lay bet at a betting exchange.

We recommend using a matched betting calculator to determine the appropriate stakes for both the back and lay bets. Once calculated, confirm the bets and wait for the event to conclude. After this, you will have received your free bets, and you can repeat these steps but using your free bet as your back bet. This approach as a whole can help you utilize free bets in a strategic and effective manner, if all the steps are followed correctly that is.

Matched Betting in Action

Here is an example of matched betting to help you better understand this concept. First, sign up and deposit $20 in your account. Place a $20 bet on a specific outcome, let’s say a football match where Team A is playing against Team B, with odds 2.0 to win. Simultaneously, use a betting exchange to lay Team A winning with, let’s say, odds of 2.1. With these odds, you would need to place a bet of $19.05 against team A.

In this scenario, if Team A wins, the bookmaker bet wins $20, but you lose $19.05, resulting in a total profit of $0.95. If Team A loses or draws, you will make a total loss of $0.95. This is known as a qualifying loss. Either way, you have effectively been able to activate your free bet, and if you were to repeat these steps but with a $20 back bet, not using your own capital, then regardless of the outcome, you would profit around $20.

It’s important to note that this is a simplified example, and in practice, matched betting involves more calculations and considerations, such as odds fluctuations, qualifying bets, and withdrawal requirements. Additionally, matched betting requires careful attention to terms and conditions to ensure compliance with bookmaker rules.

Betting Exchanges

A betting exchange is a platform where individuals can bet against each other rather than against a bookmaker. In essence, it facilitates peer-to-peer betting. Unlike traditional bookmakers, where odds are set by the bookmaker, on a betting exchange, users can both back and lay.

Back betting is where you bet that something will happen. For instance, if you back Team A to win a football match, you’re betting on Team A’s victory. Conversely, when you lay a selection, you’re betting against it. Using the same example, if you lay Team A, you’re betting that they won’t win the football match. This essentially means you’re taking on the role of the bookmaker, offering odds to other users who want to back Team A.

Betting exchanges make money by charging a commission on the net winnings of each bet. This commission is typically lower than the margin traditional bookmakers apply to their odds. Betting exchanges offer more flexibility and often better odds compared to traditional bookmakers, making them attractive to many bettors, especially those involved in strategies like matched betting. Popular examples of betting exchanges include Betfair and Betdaq, and due to the utility they offer, they are key tools in order to help use free bets effectively.

Betting Odds

Another thing to understand in order to use free bets effectively are betting odds. There are three primary types of betting odds used by bookmakers and betting exchanges: decimal odds, fractional odds, and American odds. Each type represents the probability of a particular outcome and indicates the potential returns associated with a winning bet. Decimal odds are widely used in Europe, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. They represent the total payout, including the initial stake, for every unit staked. For example, if the decimal odds are 2.50, a $10 bet would theoretically return $25 ($10 stake multiplied by 2.50).

Fractional odds are common in the UK and Ireland. They represent the profit earned on a successful bet relative to the stake. For instance, if the fractional odds are 5/1, a $10 bet could return $50 ($10 stake multiplied by 5, plus the original $10 stake).

Finally, there are American odds, also known as moneyline odds, which are primarily used in the United States. They can be presented as either positive or negative numbers. Positive odds indicate the potential profit on a $100 stake, while negative odds indicate the amount you need to bet to win $100. For example, +200 odds mean you could win $200 on a $100 bet, while -150 odds mean you’d need to bet $150 in order to return $100 profit.