Online betting is a huge industry with many operators vying for your business. It can be challenging to know where to start, but if you stick with the best sportsbooks and understand the different types of betting, it can be a safe and profitable hobby.
Betting online is all about finding value in your wagers. Value is the difference between your expected return and the oddsmaker’s margin. A bet with high probability and low odds is a good bet, while a bet with low probability and high odds is a bad bet. Using value will help you beat the bookies and come out ahead in the long run.
When it comes to betting, there are two broad categories: recreational and professional. Recreational bettors usually bet on their favorite teams or on players they feel have the best chance of winning a game or a bet. Pro bettors take no chances and do a ton of research before placing a bet. They analyze public betting lines, shop for inflated odds (for example, one sportsbook may have a line at -110 and another has it at +100, which saves you $10 on your bet), and use strategies like fading the public or following certain trends without context.
There are many sports and leagues to bet on, and the variety of picks can be overwhelming for newcomers. Luckily, most online sportsbooks have an easy-to-use odds comparison tool that can show you the best moneyline, spreads and totals. Using this tool will save you time and ensure that you’re getting the most bang for your buck.