How do Bookmakers Make Money?

Whether you call them bookmakers, bookies, or turfs accountants, those who pay off debts for gambling games depending on the predetermined odds have an integral role to play in the gambling industry. Have you ever wondered how these bookies make money? There are behind all the major sporting events across the globe in parts of the world where gambling is legal. The bookmakers, just like the house, always have an edge over the bettors. They use unique strategies to make sure that this happens. People who understand how these bookmarkers work use their knowledge to win consistently in sports betting. The goal of this article is not to teach you how to trick bookmakers but we will give you a few great tips to help you. First of all, we will show you how these bookies make their money.

How do Bookmakers Make Money?

How do Bookies Make Their Money?

There is a common notion that bookmarkers manipulate the result of the event to make sure that they win. This isn’t the case, at least not legally. However, the bookmakers have significant control over how much they stand to win with each event. They set the price of bets based on certain principles. They can decide to change the betting lines and it is their responsibility to balance the books. Everything they do is based on the basic betting principles but their primary goal is to make money from people who place bets and pay out those who win. While gambling corporations provide a platform for betting, bookmakers are the ones who ensure that paying in and out moves smoothly. They are the ones who set the odds wagers so it’s not a surprise that they always make a profit. These bookies price bets in ways that do not represent the true probability of expected outcomes. It is the overround from these manipulations that give them an edge over the bettors.

Vigorish is the most common technique bookies use to increase their edge in the market. This vigorish is the overround we referred to earlier. It is also called margin or juice. Bookmakers build it into the odds they set to make sure that they gain after the game is complete. The vigorish is also called the commission that bookies get when they layout bets for players. Without the vig, bookmakers aren’t going to make money. The most common example used to explain the importance of the vig by bookmakers is an even game. For example, let’s say 100 people are playing an even money game where the chances of winning or losing are 50/50. If the bookmarker offers the real probability, in this case, they will have nothing to take home at the end of the game. These 100 people will all wager $10 each and expect $20 if they win. If 50 people bet on heads and 50 people bet on tails, the bookmaker will have to pay back $1000. This is why the vig is added to the odds to guarantee that the bookmarker wins something at the end of the day.

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For the example above, the odds would be 2.00 but if the vig is included, the odd set by the bookmarker will be 1.9091. With the same 100 people betting on the game, the winners of the bet will stand a chance to win $9.09 plus their original stake of $10 leaving the difference for the bookmarker. When the 100 people pay the bookmarker a total of $1000 and 50 of them win, the bookmarker will have to pay them $954.50. The difference of $45.50 is what is referred to as the vigorish. That’s a great profit margin for people who don’t bet with their money at all. Imagine what the profit will be if the total amount wagered was as high as $100 each. The higher the wagering amount, the more money the bookmaker stands to gain a profit. If each of the 100 people stakes $100 and the total wager for the bookmarker is $10,000, the vigorish will be $450 if 50 out of the contributions of the 100 people who took the bet.

While the example above can apply to games with equal or almost equal odds like a coin toss or roulette game, things get more tricky when it comes to sports betting. This is because the odds for sports betting are less likely to be even. There is more than one possible outcome for sporting events. For example, in a football game, several possible odds are depending on the type of wager you’re trying to place. The most basic is that one team will win and the other team will lose. This is similar to the example mentioned above because it is 50/50. However, there are several possible outcomes. How many goals will the winning team get by the end of the game? Will the losing team score any goal? How many goals will both teams score during the first half? Will the game end with a draw? There are many different possibilities and the bookmarker creates odds for all of them. The less likely the possibility, the higher the stake. This is why bookmakers implement many other strategies to make sure that they cash out.

How Can You Beat the Bookmakers?

As stated above, the bookmakers may manipulate the odds but they don’t control the outcome. So, with a few great tips, you can increase your edge and stand a chance to beat the bookmarker at their own game. However, it is important to note that there is no clear cut way of being 100% sure because you can’t predict the result of a game just like the bookmarker. So, what can you do to boost your chances?

  • Gather Information

Information is power and arming yourself with enough information might be enough for you to predict patterns to an extent. Make sure you’re up to date about your sport of interest. Find out as much as you can about those who will be playing as this often helps you determine the possible result of the game. You can find all the information you need from reliable online sources. Unreliable sources will only make things worse. When you’ve got all the information you need, look for valuable odds surrounding that game. When it comes to getting the most valuable bets, you should not let loyalty blind you. Compare odds from different platforms until you find the one that offers you the most value for your money whether it’s on your favorite store or not.

  • Look Out for Promotions and Avoid Bandwagon Mentality

Following the crowd when you’re wagering on sporting events might seem like a good idea but this isn’t always the case. If you’re not careful, you’ll end up following a crowd of people who are doing the wrong thing. Do your research and trust your guts even if all your friends are placing an opposing wager. As long as the platform you’re using is reliable and you’re betting based on strategy, you shouldn’t have a problem. You should also take advantage of promotions and bonuses. Most online betting platforms offer signup bonuses and many more to their clients. Look out for the most attractive promotions and take full advantage of them. However, never forget that things that look too good to be true are usually a lie. So, know when a platform is simply trying to scam you.

Bottom line

Bookmakers are there to make sure that the betting process goes smoothly no matter who is involved. At the end of the day, however, their primary objective is to make a profit. So, you don’t need to feel bad if you can’t beat the bookmakers’ edge. Focus more on placing great bets rather than worrying about the bookmakers and how they make their money. At the end of the day, you’re either lucky or unlucky and there is nothing anyone can do about it, not even the bookmakers.

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