Exchange Betting has been around for over ten years first introduced to the internet in May 2000, and despite being a huge phenomenon it is still a concept many sports bettors are not familiar with. An online betting exchange varies greatly from that of a traditional bookmaker and from a business standpoint is much like stock trading or comparable to online poker for that matter. How a betting exchange works is bettors don’t actually bet against the house they bet against other members of the site.
The world’s largest online betting exchange is Betfair.com which has more than 2 million members all laying and backing bets. How this works is a member can come to the site look at the current offers available and then decide to either bet what’s available which is called backing a bet, or post an offer for other members of the exchange which is called laying a bet.
Let’s say for example you come to Betfair looking to bet on Spain and see Spain at 2.13 and their opponent at 1.84 odds. Here you have the option of backing Spain at 2.13 or because there is still a 0.03 margin to work with you might also consider the option of laying their opponent at 1.86, which would give you Spain at 2.14. If another member comes along and backs your offer to lay, you now have a pending bet on Spain 2.14 which is better than the odds first available when you logged onto the Betfair website.
While exchange betting might sound confusing you can use an exchange just like you would an online bookmaker simply by looking at what others have layed and backing as much of it as you’d like. When you’re more familiar with their program you might later decide to start laying bets. To give you a quick explanation about laying, you can lay any amount you like but it is not a bet until another member of the site backs it. One sound strategy would be to always try to lay first and then when game time approaches cancel any of your lay which has not been matched with a back and then back someone elses lay on that game to get the bet you initially wanted.
Betfair realizes as much as we do that this might sound like gibberish to the average sports bettor so they have a special £25 risk free bet offer available. We strongly encourage you to get started via that link as this way you can learn their system without and risk.
Betting exchanges are what the professional bettors use to get better odds. As we mentioned before from a business standpoint Betfair’s model resembles that of online poker. The same way online poker sites don’t play against their customer but rather profit by taking a small percent of each pot in rake, Betfair also doesn’t profit by gambling against their players. Betfair simply facilitates bets and keeps a small percentage of each players win.
One nice feature about Betfair is exchange betting can continue while the game is in play. Here members can continue to lay and back bets right up to the final whistle in their live betting.