One of the key factors to success in all forms of betting is extracting maximum value out of the money you risk. In sports betting, an example would be shopping for the best line on a particular event. In poker, an example would be careful table selection. Ask any successful gambler about the keys to success and he’s sure to mention similar examples.
One way to get added value out of your money is to take advantage of online betting bonuses. The market for new customers is competitive and betting sites are constantly attempting to attract new players. Deposit bonuses are one of the main incentives betting sites use to gain new signups. Here’s a quick look at a few of the most popular betting bonus offers today:
Best Online Betting Bonuses for 2018
Market Specific Gambling Bonus Offers
In most cases, the types of bonuses you get are dictated by the type of betting or gambling you’re about to do. Online sportsbooks tend to have their own “bonus style” while poker rooms have their own take on promotions. Here’s a quick overview of what you can expect from all types of gambling bonuses.
Sports Betting Bonuses – Sports betting sites commonly offer deposit bonuses, and free or no-risk wagers. Always read the fine print. Some things to look out for are restricted types of bets, maximum win amount, and what you need to do to withdraw the winnings.
Online Casino Bonuses – The most common form of welcome offer at online casino sites is a deposit bonus. Sign up for an account, make your first deposit, and get free money added. It doesn’t get any easier than that. Occasionally no-deposit casino bonuses are offered, along with game specific promotions. As always, ensure the terms and conditions of any offer are fair and valuable before accepting.
Online Poker Bonuses – Poker sites most often offer deposit bonuses, with occasional promotions tied to tournament events and rewards programs. No-deposit poker bonus offers are also available from some online poker sites. Out of all the different forms of gambling, poker gives out the most useful, beneficial bonuses. If you can play a break-even game or better, the additional cash is extra money for your bankroll.
VIP and Loyalty Reward Programs – Customer rewards programs are popular at online betting sites because operators need active, loyal, players. VIP and loyalty rewards programs play a prominent role in online gambling for both players and sites operators.
Racing Betting Bonuses (coming soon!) – Online racebooks typically offer “rebate rewards.” Many racing betting sites also offer first deposit bonuses. Visit the promotions section of racing betting sites and you’ll often see weekly cash back rebate promotions. These racing betting promotions give you back a small percent of your total bets placed on races each week.
For example, Racing Site A might promise to give you back 3% of all action, win or lose. This means that if you place a total of $1,000 worth of wagers, you will earn back $30.
Types of Betting Bonuses, Incentives, and Promotional Offers
Online betting bonuses are offered in many different forms. Some give you free money for signing up. Others match your first deposit dollar-for-dollar or refund your first bet if it loses. There is an endless variety of betting bonuses, but most of them fit into one of several popular promotional incentive categories.
Betting Deposit Bonuses
One of the most common is the basic deposit bonus. Almost all betting sites offer incentives to encourage deposits from new signups.
For example, an online betting site may offer a promotion in which they offer a 100% bonus on your first deposit. If you deposit $50, the bookmaker will add $50 to your account as a reward. In this example, the betting website has effectively doubled your first deposit.
Betting signup bonuses act as a strong incentive to try out new sites. You get the chance to place a few bets with a little extra money without a whole lot of up-front risk. Remember – betting signup promotions always come with terms, conditions, and restrictions. For example, you cannot deposit money, then make a withdrawal without placing any bets.
Betting promotional incentives are not just for new customers either. Gambling sites want to encourage their customers to stay active, reward real money play with vip/loyalty rewards programs. Generally speaking, the more often you play, the more reload or redeposit bonuses you are likely to receive.
A note about clearing betting bonuses: All deposit offers must be “cleared” before you can withdraw the extra funds AND any winnings obtained by risking the extra cash. Bonuses are cleared by “rolling over” the funds by wagering.
Clearing requirements are used to prevent fraud, not to take advantage of customers. The site owners want to make sure these rewards only go out to people who are actually there to play.
No Deposit Bonuses
No deposit betting bonuses are popular at online gambling sites. Like the name suggests, a no-deposit bonus offers you free money without asking you to make a deposit first. All you have to do is sign-up for an account.
The popularity of free money promotions is easy to understand. You’re not asked to disclose personal financial information. The best part is you just may win without any risk on your end.
Sounds like a great deal, right? Well, it is a great deal but all no deposit gambling offers come with two limiting terms:
- Win caps.
- You have to deposit before you can withdraw.
Gambling sites need to limit their exposure. Basically, a win cap says you can’t use a free chip to win a million dollars off the casino’s progressive jackpot slot machine. Most win caps max out at between $100 to $300. If you use the no-deposit bonus to win more than that, you only get to keep the total amount of the win cap.
Second, you must make a deposit before you can withdraw any money that you win with the free cash you received. The reason for this rule is to prevent people from opening multiple accounts and abusing the offer.
We still think no-deposit betting offers are great. They let you try the site and software risk-free. As long as you understand any terms and restrictions of an offer, no-deposit bonuses can provide tremendous value.
Some gambling bonuses are offered with specific short-term promos. For example, a sportsbook might offer a no risk play for a certain amount on a major sporting event, such as the Super Bowl.
Free bets, refund offers, enhanced odds, and money-back specials are also popular. For example, If you are laying action on the first goal scorer in a soccer match, the bookmaker may return stakes if the game is played out as a goalless draw.
Some free bets come with almost no restrictions. Betting sites refund the whole value (up to a maximum amount) of your first wager if it’s a loss.
Sports betting sites in particular love to advertise “free wagers”, but it’s usually just a refund offer. You don’t get the bonus money unless your first wager loses.
This is an example of why it’s important to always read and consider the terms and conditions of any bonus offer before accepting.
Random Cash Infusions
Sometimes, online betting sites provide you with bonus rewards in your account just as a thank you for your loyalty. Others might hold regular prize draws, where randomly chosen winners get a prize. The most popular betting brands regularly review the accounts of customers and reward their loyalty accordingly. It stands to reason that the more action you provide, the more you will be rewarded.
Tip: Don’t hesitate to ask for a bonus. There is nothing wrong with emailing support and requesting a bonus – especially if you are in the middle of a bad run and are a frequently active customer.
When you are deciding where to bet online, take the time to compare betting bonus offers and choose the ones that make sense for you. Even if you have a favorite betting site, it’s a good idea to try out new sites from time to time and take advantage of their specials.
Make sure you have the most current bonus codes when signing up. If you are a regular player at a number of shops, keep track of what sort of extras you receive. Bonuses are essentially free money, so if you are playing for real money you really should take advantage of them whenever possible.