Sports Arbitrage – Best Cheat Sheet & Arbing Software for Dummies
Estimated Reading Time: 42 minutes
The “Show” box underneath displays Full Contents & Jump Links for your convenience.
- 1. What is Sports Arbitrage Betting?
- 2. 1. Sports Arbitrage Betting Process – Careless Mistakes
- 3. 2. Wrong Selection of Sports Arbitrage Software & Service
- 4. 3) Bookmaker’s Account Restriction on Sports Arbitrage
- 5. 4) Arbitrage Alternative Methods – Betfair Arbitrage Strategy
- 6. 5) Arbitrage Trading – Quick Check List
What is Sports Arbitrage Betting?
Sports arbitrage betting is legal and does theoretically generate profits no matter which team or player wins. Simply, you bet all the outcomes and scoop profits. Just in case you are absolutely new to Sports Arbitrage, suggest you take a look at How to Get & Play Surebet.
The harsh reality is that not a few people tried sports arbitrage but many failed. Remember, sports arbitrage is 100% Risk-Free advantage play based on the simple mathematical logic. However, practically it’s not a simple mistake-free practice and newbies lose money & waste time mainly because of the human error.
So, in this guide, we show you how to arbitrage sports betting the whole process (this is the case you place arbitrage manually) with full details of the issues and how to solve them & increase profits with high-quality software.
Broadly speaking there are 3 such key pitfalls as follows;
- Careless Mistakes in Arbitrage Betting Process
- Wrong Selection of Sports Arbitrage Software
- Bookmakers’ Account Restriction on Sports Arbitrage
Resolving the 1.-3. only will enable any newbies to be a seasoned sports arbitrage player. We will address each pitfall.
Then, we will share the alternative method which can increase profits (particularly useful for those who play Matched Betting) together with Quick Check List as below;
- Sports Arbitrage Alternative Method – Betting Exchange
- Arbitrage Trading – Quick Check List
You can assess if sports arbitrage is for you & arbing is worth your effort after you go through this guide.
1. Sports Arbitrage Betting Process – Careless Mistakes
The Sports arbing process can be divided into the following 4 major parts;
- What do you need to start arbing (initial set-up & money management)?
- How to find sports arbitrage bets
- Verify Arbitrage Bets
- Place Bets
in 1., I will briefly explain the whole process with key requirements/activities in the above A. – D. by listing relevant pitfalls & solutions. In 2. I will elaborate on selected critical pitfalls and possible preventive actions.
A. What do you need to start arbing?
1. You need to open at least 5 – 10 on-line sportsbook accounts both Soft & Sharp Bookies.
Over 200 online bookmakers are supposed to exist, and probably 95% of the bookies are soft bookies. You need Both Soft & Sharp Bookies.
How does sports arbitrage betting work?
The profit source of sports arbitrage comes from Market Inefficiencies that creates under-round condition when we cover all the outcomes of a sports event. Means, we locate an arbitrage opportunity when bookmakers present different but sufficiently high odds on each side of an event. This often happens between a soft and a sharp bookmaker. It is difficult to place arbs among only sharp bookies because they are very fast at adjusting odds. So, in order to make decent arbitrage betting, you need at least 5 – 10 bookmakers comprised of both soft & hard bookies. But, the most important thing is security. There are many fishy online bookies, thus ensure you use only top-notch established Bookmakers.
List Of Soft & Sharp Bookmakers
We have issued and periodically updated the below 2 lists that are important for advantage players, so whenever you have time, go through;
BTW, don’t get misled by the title. Those 35 bookies are world top class bookies. They just don’t like sharp punters thus restrict their account very quickly. Actually, all the bookies we list in the above guides are the most trustworthy companies. Therefore feel free to choose the ones that allow you to open in your residing country.
Cautious Action Plans – Differing Bookmaker Rules
Different bookmakers have different rules on how to handle the outcome in various cases like draw, extra time, and incomplete game etc. If there is a difference in rules and one bookmaker acts on the bet while the other simply returns your bet, then you have a 50-50 chance of winning and losing. So it isn’t all bad. But it is a risk nonetheless and is no longer a surebet. So, learn what rules each bookmaker uses with any sport you are going to bet on. When you have an arb between two bookmakers, make sure;
- Both bookmakers use the same rules. Typically, withdrawal of 1 player in Tennis, one bookmaker considers the match is not completed and reimburse your money while the other bookmaker considers it is completed. Then your bet is no longer arbitrage but just a normal bet. For this particular point,
- Beyond the rules, you need to check; Are they in the same markets? / Do handicaps match? / Do the dates match? / Do the currencies match?
2. E-Wallet is essential for arbing
Arbitrage requires the banking facility to manage quick & frequent money transfer among the bookies. So you need to deposit & withdrawal economically. Credit card/bank transfer etc are relatively time-consuming & costly thus not for arb. You need to use the below two E-Wallet that is the most reputable & widely accepted by any bookmakers. ;
Note For Matched Bettor
Almost all bookies don’t accept the above e-wallets as the first deposit method for welcome bonus / sign-up offer. Therefore, in case you play matched betting before sports arbitrage, make sure you use your bank card (credit or debit) for the initial deposit.
3. Sports Arbitrage Required Starting Capital (Bankroll)
How much can you make money from sports arbitrage?
Plan your profit target first. Once you get used to the arbing you may be able to achieve 15 – 20% return per month, say average 18%, so if you start up with $10,000 you may get £1,800. For its rationale, check “Is surebet really 100% Risk-Free?" The learning curve is something you can’t miss for arbing at the outset, so do Free Practice.
4. Sports arbitrage money management
Never ever underestimate the importance of your bankroll management in sports arbitrage. This is the key to improve your profit by enhancing efficiency. Your money should have the greatest liquidity. The funds on hold should be kept as low as possible. Ensure your funds are always available at the right bookmaker at the right time to place every good arb opportunities.
Keep Fund In Your E-Wallet
Never divide your total capital and deposit them all into the bookmakers’ account, which may empty the e-wallet account. This is a common mistake new arb traders do. For example newbie with an initial capital of $2,000 often end up depositing $100 into 20 different bookmakers. Don’t do this because most of the funds are locked up. The problems arise when you run out of funds in a bookmaker and your money processors like Neteller or Skrill accounts are empty. By that time you make a withdrawal request at a bookmaker which has funds, but the withdrawal can take some time. So you will end up locking your funds for many days. One of the most efficient manners to manage the bankroll is to keep at least 30% of your bankroll in the money processor account as a reserve & to deposit the rest of 70% equally among the bookmakers you want to use.
Sports arbitrage money management example
Your total bankroll is $2000, and assume you use 10 bookies, you have to:
- Keep $600 saved in the money processor account, as a reserve
- Spread $1,400 into 10 bookies, you may want to allocate equal $140 at the start, but gradually make a more proper allocation, say $200 to bookie A but $100 to bookie B based on the frequency of arb opportunities.
E-Wallet Reserve Importance
Once you start trading arbs, there are chances that some of your bookmaker accounts might run out of funds. This happens because, in any arbitrage bet, one bet wins at a bookmaker, while the bet at other bookmaker involved loses. So you will always end up having lots of funds at some bookmaker accounts, while no funds at other bookmaker accounts. If you manage your bankroll like this, whenever you run out of funds in a particular bookmaker account, you can transfer funds from the money processor account. Depositing funds from the money processor is free and instant in almost all the bookmakers. So it is always recommended to maintain a good balance at your e-wallet account (at least 30% as mentioned), as you can always use it as instant money. By the time your money processor account balance comes to nil, you will need to make withdrawal requests from your bookmaker accounts. Most bookmakers offer a free withdrawal once a week or so. You can use the free withdrawal to get funds back to your e-wallet account. Withdraw enough to reset bankroll back to the initial state. 30% at money processor & 70% among bookmakers is the optimal ratio many traders suggest based on their experiences.
B. How to find sports arbitrage bet
How to find arbitrage bets is all about selecting good sports arbitrage software. Because arbing opportunities disappear in minutes or even seconds, without high quality software, it’s almost impossible to make decent money. Since it’s critically important, I’ll make detail explanation & suggested services in the 2) Improper Selection of Arb Software & Lack Of Practice section.
C. Verify Arbitrage Bets
When you receive the signal from your chosen sports arbitrage software, check:
What arb percentage is it?
This is always your first consideration because this determines whether the arb is worth and is also your first hint at whether there might be an error (palp) in the arbing opportunity. 2% – 7% return looks optimized range and you may need to check if it is a palp if higher than 10%, you may disregard below 0.5% (too low) and will dismiss over 20% immediately, just a guideline.
What sport is it?
If it is a sport which commonly has rule mismatches (Tennis, NHL or MLB), then make sure the two bookmakers involved use the same rule. Double-check the details that you have the right sports, the right teams, the right markets (money-line, handicap, over/under etc).
What are the odds like?
If the percentage is in the sweet spot area, a quick check of the odds to make sure nothing is too strange about them is usually enough. If the arb is a little higher than usual, then it may be worth applying a few checks. Look for swapped odds, swapped handicap signs, typos, and if possible compare the odds with the general market odds and see if either one of the bookmakers is significantly out of line by using an odds comparison site like Oddchecker;
The above Betfair Maureens Star looks a palp (palpable error – see below), then suggest not take unnecessary risk.
Cautious Action Plans – Palpable Bookmaker Errors
All bookmakers have a clause in their terms and conditions which state that if they make an 'obvious error’ in their odds, they can cancel the bet at any time. They can void the bet before the match begins, during the match or after completion. Books with good reputation however usually don’t void a bet after the match has started. If one of the odds we have used in an arbitrage trade was, in fact, a mistake made by the bookmaker and they decide to invoke this rule, we are obviously left with the second bet standing uncovered. This creates a risk as that remaining bet may lose. So, the best way to avoid this problem is by taking preventive actions and we can follow a few simple rules for identifying odds which might be errors. Firstly, you need to closely look at the details for any arbitrage of 10% or over and check the below 2 odds/handicaps.
Sports arbitrage appropriate odds range
- An obvious favourite/underdog is indicated by odds under 1.85 and over 2.25 respectively. In other words, only trust arbs where both sets of odds are within the 1.85 and 2.25 range, or both odds are outside of the 1.85 and 2.25 range.
Even after your careful check, if palp still happens then;
Cautious Action Plans – Never Leave Your Uncovered Bet Open
It’s extremely important. Cover your bet as much as you can if the bookmaker voids the bet before the match begins. If the bookmaker voids your bet during the match, try to cover your bet as best as you can with live betting (in-play). You might have to lock in a small loss of a few %, but that’s the way better than losing your entire stake in a gamble.
If you leave your bet open then it’s no longer arbitrage or investment but a normal bet that is a gamble. If the bookmaker voids your bet after the match is complete (not very common, but it happens), accept this fact and avoid that bookmaker.
Sports Arbitrage Calculator
Calculate your arbitrage bets
If the arb is indeed real, then you need to figure out how much you can place on either bet. This is often determined by how much money you have in each bookmaker, or by a maximum bet size imposed by one bookmaker. So you need to look at your account balances and the maximum bet sizes for each bookmaker (where possible).
And you need to use those limitations to calculate how much can be, and how much needs to be placed on either side of the arb with some form of an arbitrage calculator. Importantly never risk too much of your balance on any one arb because:
- If the arb is a low percentage, you may not want to dump all of your cash into one low percentage arb when better arbs may come
- If the bet limits are quite high for both sides of the arb, then you may still want to limit your bet to a manageable figure (also remember 75% rule to avoid bookmaker’s radar).
- In the first place, if the arb is high, you don’t want to risk a large amount on something that might be an error or something that you might make a simple mistake on.
BTW, you don’t need to do all the calculation manually, but you can use Free Sports Arbitrage Calculator It is prepared by Pinnacle Sports. BTW, Pinnacle Bet is a sharp bookmaker publicly promoting surebet. It is a Must Bookie for professional punters including arbers, so suggest go through our Pinnacle full review.
D. Place Bets
Once you have calculated how much to place on either side of the arb, enter the amounts into both bookmakers. Then start submitting both sides to get “Confirmation” which is important. The side you should ultimately ‘confirm’ first is the side you are least sure about being accepted.
Bookmaker Confirmation Methods
What may confuse you is that there are a few different confirmation manner depending on each bookmaker, 2 typical patterns:
Standard Confirmation (Good One)
- There are books who use the first confirmation screen to indicate whether your bet is acceptable or not. So you Enter your bet amount and Submit it. And the confirmation screen will indicate that your bet will be Placed upon Confirmation, or it will indicate that the bet is Rejected for whatever reason. Once you are on the confirmation screen with an accepted bet, you Confirm the bet and it will usually be Placed.
- The only exception is if the odds actually change in the time between when you Submitted the bet and when you Confirm the bet, so you do need to be fast when placing bets.
Problematic System (Bad One)
- There are books who have a confirmation screen, but that confirmation screen does not indicate whether your bet will be Placed or Rejected. So you Enter your bet amount, Submit your bet and reach the confirmation page. The confirmation page will always simply display your bet amount and ask you whether you are sure. You still don’t know whether your bet is going to be accepted or not. You then have to confirm your bet and find out whether the bookmaker has Placed your bet, or Rejected it.
- This method is problematic if you don’t know the maximum bet you are allowed to place and you have to Confirm your bet to find out if you are over it or not. I think this is another good bookmaker variable to note in your spreadsheet next to all of your bookmakers as you get set up.
Recheck and Record
Reread the confirmation message to check;
- Do they both have the same sports and markets on them?
- Do the two (or three) bets cover ALL possible outcomes?
- Are the odds right?
Cautious Action Plans – Odds Change
Remember Odds are not static but changing at all time by reflecting modification when bookies find imbalance situation. Good news is once you bet, any later odds correction will not affect you. However, If you place one bet and then take too long to place the second bet, you may be too late to get the correct odds, or you might miss the second bet completely. Missing the second bet leaves you open to potentially losing that bet, but of course, it also leaves you open to potentially winning. Needless to repeat, Gambling is not the word included in the dictionary of sports betting arbitrage.
So, make sure:
- You open the web pages of all the bookmakers involved into the bet BEFORE inputting your bet into the first one. In other words, verify that the info from alert service is always up to date.
- The problem could only happen in case of a change (in 1 bookmaker) during the few seconds you will need to input your bet into the other bookmaker, which highly limits the scope for such case to occur.
If it happens
Don’t panic, apply the Never Leave Your Uncovered Bet Open theory we noted before. You just need to use the best replacement odd, which will lead you to an arbitrage bet in 90% of the times. Admittedly a bit less profitable, but still positive. In the worst scenario, you will make a “negative" arbing which will make you lose instead of win several %, but in any case, you will not lose your total stake.
Cautious Action Plans – Betting Just Before Starting Event
Suggest you pay special attention to avoid betting just before events start. Odds tend to change very frequently just before event starts (as many people want to catch the last possibility to place their bets) and it results in showing up of multiple surebet opportunities. Some of them being very lucrative. Unfortunately, it could happen that some bookmakers will temporarily close the market just before the event starts and you will end up with one bet placed somewhere else without a possibility to cover other options. So:
- You need to double-check at bookmakers sites when exactly event starts.
- You need to be absolutely sure for enough time to place bets at all bookies of interest.
- The general rule is not to place arbitrage bets, 10 minutes or less before the event takes place.
It is better to lose one or two arbitrages than to risk a significant part of your budget. And, if it happens, explore to cover it up at live-betting markets.
Cautious Action Plans – Stake Upper Limit
The ceiling of betting could be a problem. Say you have got 5,000 euros to bet and that the arb calculator is telling you that you should bet 1,500 euros in (A) and 3,500 euros in (B). You bet the 1,500 euros in (A) without any problem, then once you arrive at (B), the bookmaker system tells you that the upper bet on this chance is 1,000 euros. You cannot make a Surebet anymore. So follow the principle of:
- Firstly, try to avoid the problem by not gambling with the bookmaker which does not announce its upper limit in advance.
- Secondary, in case the sportsbook (A) that does not show their max stake until you have confirmed the bet and you know the max of the other book (B), always confirm your bet in (A) first with the amount that shouldn’t exceed the max of (B) to avoid this problem.
- Thirdly, if none of the involved bookmakers publishes its limits, then you have to start with the one whose odd diverges most from the competitors. Indeed, some bookmakers announce a super cote in order to be listed on the betting websites but they strongly limit the ceilings of the stakes.
- Lastly, if you are still caught in that situation, apply the above Never Leave Your Uncovered Bet Open Theory & find out the best replacement odd.
2. Wrong Selection of Sports Arbitrage Software & Service
A. Sports arbitrage software mistakes
Firstly, if you try to arbitrage without a proper software, our suggestion is Don’t Do That. 3 key reasons;
- Finding arb manually is too time-consuming & practically difficult to capture the short-lived opportunity, means you will be able to make only an extremely limited number of successful arbitrage.
- As explained in the above 1) there are so many traps that cause your mistake, it’s almost impossible to avoid all of them if you do manually. In other words, the proper all-in-one system will allow you to avoid most of the above pitfalls automatically.
- Due to the above 1. & 2. reasons your profitability will be significantly better even after paying the subscription fee to the system.
B. Free Sports Arbitrage Finder – Caution
As you find later in the 3) Bookmaker’s Account Restriction, one of the nastiest action by bookmakers & the biggest issue preventing sharp punter from long-term profit-making is the imposition of your account limitation & restriction. You need to be aware of the risk of it when you use Free Software and Sign-Up Bookmakers via Software System. Let me elaborate on these critical points as follows;
1. Free Software
Since it’s free, many users access & bet based on it. Whenever the opportunities appear in the free finder, a significant number of punters bet on it more or less at the same time, which triggers the bookies’ radar. In other words, the bookmakers will easily identify you as a price trader. Thus the chances of your account restriction will significantly increase. I personally don’t believe any free software is worth if you risk giving up most of the profit by having your accounts restricted very quickly.
2. Bookmaker Account Sign-Up via Software Vendors’ Referral Link
When you use Arb Software, the system facilitates you to sign up (open) new bookmaker easily. But you should be aware of the consequences by doing so, which is very true for Free Software. Usually, software vendors embed their own referral link for you to sign-up the bookmakers. Means they earn referral commission paid by the bookies when you bet. This is the important income source and that’s the reason they can provide you with free service.
Therefore without exception, free software vendors set their referral link in the system. What’s the implication of it? Bookmakers already know the software name & referral account. So, opening up the bookmakers via software system will spontaneously inform the bookies that you’re using the software. Hence you’re disclosing you do sports arbitrage. Consequently, the bookies may automatically place your account in their blacklist at the outset for them to restrict your account anytime they want. I’m afraid signing the bookmakers via software is the quickest way to get your accounts limited.
C. Best Sports Arbitrage Software List
Having said, using high-quality arbitrage bet finder/software is a must. When it comes to the selection there are tens of services in the market. However, most of the software/alert services don’t even fulfil the basic thing of finding arbitrage options. We are listing the following software as the most reliable services;
RebelBetting – For Serious Arbitrager
- RebelBetting a Swedish company (ClaroBet AB) that started service in 2006 and by far the most widely used & creditable software among a broad range of groups from newbie to experts. They have over 100,000 users worldwide.
- Friendly interface that allows users to see all necessary information in one screen. Easy to handle system with Auto-Login & Auto-Surf allow users to place correct bets within seconds. It doesn’t only log you into accounts at bookmakers involved in the surebet, but also brings you to the correct pages containing the event and highlights the participants and the odds. This means that the only thing left for you to do is to enter the stake amounts and confirm the bets. You are aware that a lot of arbs last only a couple of minutes and quickly expire. Using auto-login and auto-surf features enable you to place bets you used to miss. In addition, you will be able to make greater trading volume in the same trading time.
- No risk to miss a great arb with alerts like filtering away low arbs, or arbs from specific bookmakers or sports etc.
- Good warning function displayed in the Betting Browser such as different event rules or greater risk for a void bet means you can automatically avoid many mistakes listed in 1).
- The widest range of Cross-Markets & Middles (see below for what the Cross-Markets & Middles are).
- Average return/month is 10-20+% depending on your time to devote the arbitrage activities.
Suggest you take a look at our full review, Rebel Betting Review – The Truth About World Number One Arbitrage Software, where you find the interview with the founder. I believe our review will provide you with a good insight into if RebelBetting fits your needs.
It’s a natural trend that bookmakers increasingly offer betting options on top of the standard outcome of a match (home, draw, or away). There are many more betting choices such as Goal numbers, Asian Handicap etc. within a single game thus more arbitrage openings.
It’s said that for popular matches in a top league like Premier League, there are well over 100 different bet types available in the market. Making the best use of arbitrage opportunities among cross-market arbitrages opportunities (different bet offer) can increase your income. But, in order to find them, creative thinking is required. The advantage is that many cross-market arbitrages are not obvious therefore, the opportunity remains viable for a much longer time.
Middles is the Jackpot in arbitrage. It comes when played surebet is characterized by opportunity to win both (or more) placed bets, provided certain event outcome will appear. Probably the best way to understand is to read RebelBetting explanation.
All in all, Rebel Betting is the very top providers while offering Free Service (see later), therefore if you’re serious about arbing I can’t think of any other better services
Sports Arbitrage Other Software
The below shows a few other arbitrage software services;
OddsStorm – For Football Arbitrage
OddStorm is managed by OddStorm Ltd and has been operating since 2006 and provide arbitrage service (pre-match & in-play) especially for football.
BetSlayer – Not Suggested
BetSlayer is an economical service though it scans only around 20+ bookmakers which are all UK soft bookies, means your betting life would be extremely short.
Profit Accumulator & Oddsmonkey – Matched Betting Services
You can use Oddsmatcher available in matched betting premium service for sports arbitrage. See the details in 4) Sports Betting Alternative Methods.
Sports Arbitrage Free Practice
Inexperience is Sin, So Practice & Practice
Not understanding odds, bet types, how bookmakers work and not knowing how to react to an unexpected situation, all these mean you may lose money. Thus, inexperience is probably the biggest risk.
Because it manifests itself in all of the above risks either in the creation of the problem or in the inability to respond to the problem. Sports Arbitrage requires speed and in order to move fast, you have to take it slow at the beginning and learn how to do it properly.
First, you need to start 'trading’ without actually betting real money. Find the arbs, go through the motions, pretend you are doing it but don’t actually bet anything. This is called 'Paper Trading’. This allows you to learn how the bookmakers work without risking your money, it builds experience. As you gain some experience you will navigate to the correct destination faster and place the correct bet more reliably. With the basics under control you will need to progress past paper trading to real money in order to understand how the bet confirmation process takes place, and so trading with very small amounts is a necessary second step.
Free Trial Of Quality Sports Arbitrage Software
During this practice period of Paper Trading, suggest the below software’ Free Trial Period;
- Rebel Betting – access Free Version (arb up to 0.6%) & to see the comparison with Pro Version and F&Q. RebelBetting download.
Arbitrage may seem to be difficult at the beginning, but the truth is it has a steep learning curve. Any legitimate opportunity to work at home and make a good profit at the same time will always involve real work. Once you master the few basic principles and apply the above triple check steps, you will very quickly improve the rate at which you can place an arb successfully. Your mind will be triple checking everything as you go, and you will flow through the whole process without needing to think about it. But in the beginning… you have to take it slow!
3) Bookmaker’s Account Restriction on Sports Arbitrage
Bookmaker’s Restriction on Successful Players – Limiting Stakes
Soft bookmakers say;
Any accounts being used for sports arbitrage purpose would be frowned upon because they are fundamentally opposed to the clients making money from dealing with them without incurring risk.
Simply to say they don’t like sharp bettors who eventually win, in fact this applies not only to arbitragers but any of the punters who constantly win.
4) Arbitrage Alternative Methods – Betfair Arbitrage Strategy
Matched Betting & Sports Arbitrage
On this occasion, allow us to share our betting strategies. We use 6 Advantage Plays based on the EV. When it comes to sports betting, we have 3 methods. Among them, we suggest people take the evolving move as a logical and the safest approach for newbies. namely;
- Starting from Matched Betting (see Dummies Guide) / Sports Arbitrage. Because these are basically risk-free and you can lock-in profit from almost every bet. Means you can start safely, which will help change your mindset toward betting activities/gambling.
- Comparing between matched betting & sports arbitrage, many people feel more comfortable to start matched betting first because you can do it easier with a smaller bank.
- However, these 2 methods could be more short-lived down the road due to the ever-tightening soft bookies’ account restriction. See the rationale in Know Bookies’ Business Model. Besides, these methods are all about scalping small margins. Therefore, people often feel frustrated with limited profit amount in each bet comes from the risk-hedging nature.
- Thus, evolving into Value Betting WITHOUT RISK-HEDGE which is more size with better efficiency for long-term is a natural move as an ultimate betting activity.
Matched Betting Software for Sports Arbitrage
Both matched betting and sports arbitrage are based on the same hedging logic to achieve risk-free, namely covering all the outcomes of an event. The differences are;
- Profit Sources: Matched betting relies on bookmakers’ bonuses & free bet while sports arbitrage resorts to the bookmakers’ odds inefficiency.
- Cover All Outcomes: Matched betting usually done between a bookmaker & betting exchange lay bet while sports arbitrage completes among multiple bookmakers.
So, as said before, it’s worth considering matched betting first or do both simultaneously.
Many people tend to misunderstand that matched betting is for UK/Ireland, wrong, for the outside the UK/Ireland, check;
For those who reside in the UK/Ireland, Profit Accumulator or Oddsmonkey offer the best service (see Comparison among matched betting premium services for details). They provide you with various high-quality software and one of them is oddsmatcher as below;
In the rating column, any event showing over 100% is a sports arbitrage opportunity, means you can use this oddsmatcher as the sports arbitrage finder.
Betting Exchanges for Sports Arbitrage
This method is based on small research we conducted among our GEM members. Several members called it Betfair Arbitrage Strategy. For the background & full details of this method as well as the application to the worldwide players, go to Arbitrage Betting – Use Exchange & Extend Matched Betting Profits.
For those who are not familiar with betting exchange, take a look at All About Betting Exchanges. There are 4 established betting exchanges as;
For those who can’t access to the 4 key betting exchanges, don’t worry, you can use bet brokers, but you need to take a cautious approach given their small business operation. The following 2 documents will help you select the right one(s);
Benefit Of Lay Bet at Betting Exchange
In the event with multiple outcomes such as football – Win / Lose / Draw, you need to bet both Loose & Draw for “Not Win” in usual bookmakers. However, in exchanges, you can cover “Not Win” with 1 single bet. Namely, you become a bookmaker position when you lay in exchanges.
How To Arbitrage Between Bookmaker & Betting Exchange
The Oddsmatcher often (as a matter of fact, always) captures the profit opportunities rather than loss opportunity, such as;
As said before, the % in the red box shows 100+ %, means Lay Bet Odds is Better than Back Bet Odds. This is the condition of under-round which creates arbitrage opportunity, thus generates profit. The calculation shows;
It says if you place £100 back bet on Reivers Lodge (Horse Racing at Ayr) in William Hill while laying £107.45 on the same horse in Betfair (betting exchange), you will lock-in £5.30 net profit (105.3% indicated in the red box) no matter Reivers Lodge wins or loses. This is exactly the sports arbitrage profit.
As said, high quality oddsmatcher constantly capture arb opportunities. The followings are possible earning scenario;
- Bet stake of £/€40 – 60 with an average 5% arb profit x 5 – 10 bets/day
- Then Monthly Profit would be the range of £/€300 – 900
- If you cover many bookies say over 30, you may be able to arb efficiently. Besides, you may not have to keep arbing in the same bookie which could trigger bookie’s unnecessary attention.
5) Arbitrage Trading – Quick Check List
The following is a quick check-list for you to keep it handy whenever you trade:
Pre-Trading (without real money)
- Bookmakers Accounts – select & open proper bookies account at least 10.
- E-Wallet (Money Processor) Account – open Neteller / Skrill (it also help bookies save cost).
- Arb Service Provider – select the proper arb alert/software service.
- Free Practice – do enough practise before using real money.
- Bankroll Allocation – keep 30:70 between bookies & money processors to maximize efficiency.
- Single Currency – decide at the outset & not change to avoid any exchange influence.
Real Trading (with real money)
- Game Choice – don’t choose too lower tier minor game like Thailand Division 3 Football.
- Game Category – don’t bet many kinds of sports inconsistently, but focus on less than 5.
- Game Confirmation – ensure the right game in the right league with the right teams.
- Odds Check – ensure for correct bets (1×2 +0.5 -0.5 +0.25 over or under half time or full time).
- Bookmaker’s Unique Rule – ensure counter-party rules of event correspond with each other.
- Return Choice – don’t touch possible Palpable error of over 10%, safe & reasonable range is 3-7%.
- Bookmaker’s Fund Balance – ensure enough money with counter-party to cover the stake.
- Upper Limit of Stake – always confirm the limit of the game in both concerned bookies first.
- 75% Guideline – don’t always bet the maximum stake limit but bet up to 75% of it.
- Bet Round figure – don’t bet like $151.38 but make it $150.
- Factor Commission – ensure charges is calculated (software usually does automatically).
- Betting Amount – double check if your figures are correct before placing your trade.
- Multiple Bets – never do over 2 bets in the same game & bookie such as draw + one team.
- Bet Timing – avoid betting during the last 10 minute before event starts.
- Order Confirmation – verify bet, record & even take screenshots for all trades individually.
- Unmatched Trade – never leave part of trade unmatched but find & bet the next best odds.
- Fund Withdrawal – avoid frequent transfer or withdrawal of the entire balance from bookies.
Joshua Walker (bio)
Editor – Global Extra Money (GEM)
BTW, we GEM deal with 6 Advantage Play as follows;