Betting exchange sites appear similar to traditional betting sites at first glance. You sign up, deposit, place bets at the day’s odds and get paid if your predictions are correct. Betting exchanges are marked by one key difference: you bet against other customers rather than against the bookmaker.
Peer-to-peer betting sites offer a number of advantages over traditional wagering. The matchmaking system between punters leaves the host site with no stake in the outcome of any individual wager. Online betting exchanges earns a commission regardless of which side wins or loses. Exchange betting sites also don’t limit your wagers if you are a “sharp” that wins frequently.
Punters often find significantly better prices at a betting exchange site. This is the case because the free market sets the odds, not professional oddsmakers. Exchange bets aren’t always better-priced than traditional wagers, but it happens often enough.
There are not many online betting exchanges in operation but there is one that is very well known and reputable. BetFair.com is the most popular exchange if you’d like to give peer-to-peer betting a shot. US players not accepted but most other countries are.
Betting Exchange Sites
How Betfair Works
To put it simply, Betfair is a betting matchmaking service. At a traditional sportsbook, the customer takes one side of each bet while the bookmaker takes the opposite. If you bet that Team A will win, then the bookmaker is essentially betting that Team A will lose.
Betfair replaces that model by allowing matching customers on each side of every bet. At Betfair, the person who is betting that an outcome will happen is said to “back” that selection. The person who bets that an outcome will NOT happen is said to “lay” that selection.
Every wager at Betfair requires at least one person to back and one person to lay. When you want to back or lay an outcome (such as Team A winning), you log in to Betfair and get matched up with someone who thinks that outcome won’t happen. Essentially, what you’re doing is trading binary options contracts.
A potential downside to using betting exchange websites is the risk of your bet not being matched with another bettor. Small markets (such as those for very niche sports) tend to interest fewer people. If you want to back or lay a bet but nobody else is interested, you won’t get any action. The good news is that Betfair is the worlds largest exchange betting site with millions of active users.
Why You Should Try Exchange Betting Sites
Online betting exchanges have revolutionized the betting marketplace. While the traditional model of placing a bet with an online bookmaker remains commonplace, the exchange betting sites have opened up a host of new opportunities for punters all over the world. The ability to take both sides of any wager makes for more potentially profitable opportunities than what you would traditional find with a bookmaker.
Odds at online betting exchanges fluctuate more often. By carefully studying the markets and the movements (at both regular bookmakers and betting exchanges) it is possible to lay an outcome at a price than to back it at another and guarantee a profit. This is not easy to do, but it is possible with the right commitment and dedication.
The advantages of betting exchange sites are numerous. Not only do you get the ability to play either side of any wager, but you can also choose the odds you want and determine how much risk you’re willing to take when you lay a bet. The reduced commissions offered by the exchange model will save you a lot of money over time.
Like many online betting sites, exchanges allow you to bet during the course of an event. The savvy punter can use a combination of sports knowledge and fluctuating prices to maximise the values of their bets. Live betting presents its own unique set of advantages.
Online betting exchanges offer everything you would expect to see at a regular operator with better odds and a greater variety of options. You can pick your own price, pay less commission, and choose either side of a bet.
Wes Burns has more than a decade’s worth of experience as a writer, researcher, and analyst in the legal online betting industry and is co-founder of OnlineBettingSites.com. Wes approaches his work from the viewpoint of players.