In this post, we are going to answer couple of essential questions for any everyday bettor which just started his matched betting journey. So, how essential is to know how to use Betfair Exchange? What is the difference between a betting exchange and a regular bookmaker? What are the top tips on how do you use effectively a betting exchange?
How does Betfair Exchange work
The principal behind any sport betting exchange, in our case, Betfair Exchange is that instead of setting the odds (like a normal bookmaker does), users set the odds by betting against each other while the platform takes a commission from users profits.
Normally, Betfair Exchange is one of many platforms where matched bettors lay their bets and any bookmaker is where they are backing their bets.
How to use Betfair Exchange
Before we start going throughout this step by step guide, we should create a Betfair Exchange account, which as any other gambling provider you need to be over 18+ to use it and to be responsible not matter what. Also, as any betting service you will need to provide evidence of your age and identify before you are going to be able to withdraw funds and have full control over your account and funds.
Now, that we created an account and deposit some funds into it (depends on your startup budget and what welcome offers you want to tackle first) is time to make standard backing and laying wager using Betfair.
For example, we want to make a standard “backing” style wager on Dinamo vs Viitorul Constanta football match. As you already saw, we have 3 options as with any football event – Dinamo Bucharest wins, Viitorul Constanta wins or they draw. So, let’s say we are going through one of the bookmakers signup offer and we need to place a bet on a minimum odd of 2.0. In this case, we choose to back Dinamo Bucharest to win at an odd of 2.62 with a stake of £20. At the time of placing the bet, there is a total available to stake on these odds of £52.
If we choose odd of 1.95, there is a total of only £35 available to stake; and so on. So, when we choose an odd we need to keep in mind that is NO GUARANTEE your bet will be matched. If your bet is not matched and the event ends, you are refunded your stake.
The available stakes and odds will change in time due to the liquidity (money) available in the market as more users are placing more bets. Once the event is finished, Betfair will verify the result before their customers are paid out. Normally this happens soon after the event ends. Any unmatched bets will be cancelled automatically.
As always, the practice is the mother of learning, so you should place some traditional “back” style bets to get used on how Betfair Exchange works. This is the simplest way to use Betfair platform and gives you better odds and greater profit than any regular bookmaker.
As a matched bettor, most likely you are going to use an betting sport exchange market to “lay” your bets. This is slightly more complicated but with this step by step guide you will definitely understand the method. So, let’s begin using Betfair exchange with a real live example.
“Laying” bets (normally are highlighted in pink on Betfair Exchange) are the core tactic of matched betting. With the help of previous match, Dinamo Bucharest vs Viitorul Constanta from Liga 1 Romania, let’s see how to use Betfair Exchange.
So, we backed Dinamo Bucharest to win with a stake of £20. Now, we need to lay our bet, which means that we are betting on every other outcome than Dinamo win; in this case is even Viitorul Constanta wins or is a Draw.
Let’s go a little bit more into detail because is really VITAL to UNDERSTAND how a lay bet works.
Essentially, by placing a lay bet you are behaving like a bookmaker. So, if you would be a traditional bookmaker and a customer is placing a bet with you for £100 at odds of 5.0 for Dinamo Bucharest to win and this event is finished with any of other outcome than Dinamo win, you will keep the £100. If Dinamo wins, than you will lose the £100 plus £500 (5.0 x £100).
However, in a matched bettor case, because we are back betting Dinamo Bucharest with a bookmaker and we are lay betting on a sport betting exchange, we will come out ahead.
This is where a mistake can be very costly. If your bet with the bookmaker doesn’t go through at the odd you choose in the calculator and you don’t realize before you place you lay bet, you can stand to lose a considerably amount of money. ALWAYS STAY FOCUSED.
So, now that we know how to use Betfair Exchange let’s see how much commission you will pay on your winnings.
Betfair Exchange’s Lay Commission
As we mentioned before, Betfair is making money through a commission based scheme on their users winnings. This commission changes based on how much you use the service which can be seen as a reward; if you use the service more frequent than you get charged a smaller commission.
No matter how to use Betfair Exchange, the standard commission is 5% from your total winnings. In the example picked up from their handy graphic, is you net winnings are £400 and you have a discount rate of 40%, you will pay £12 commission to Betfair.
However, if you are using more frequently their service you can receive up to 60% discount which means that you would pay only £8. The standard charge (without any discount) will be a straight £20 for every £400 winning.
The good news is that even if you loose your bet on Betfair you are still receiving points which will accumulate towards your commission discount.
How to use Betfair Exchange with Lay Accumulators
An accumulating bet is usually used as an welcome offer by some of the most important bookmakers in UK. The offers is to place an accumulator and you will receive a free bet as a percentage of the amount you spend or even the entire amount. An ACCA bet (accumulator bet) is a bet on multiple events, where the total return from first bet is automatically staked on the next bet. If one of your bets loses, the whole bet is lost.
Betfair Exchange offers an option to lay certain accumulators such as pre-made ones. If you search “acca” using they search bar most likely you will see their accumulator bet sets.
How to use Betfair Exchange for Trading
Trading is a complex and broad topic to be covered in couple of rows, but regarding the Betfair Exchange you will definitely find support to trade using their service. However, a simple explanation on how sports trading works is by taking an example.
Let’s say, we place a bet before England vs Germany football match and we lay on England. As for any other event, right before the match begins and the teams are announced, the odds will fluctuate based on which players are selected or not. So, if Germany is favored due to a certain player being in great form or if the player is injured, the odds can swing in favor of England winning.
If this is the case, we should back England to win and we can expected to have a profit because basically we covered all the outcomes of the football match. The principal is simple, buy low – sell high.
Why most bettors prefer Betfair Exchange is because they offer most of the sport events and by betting in-play you have the opportunity to create a successfully situation for your trading skill.
Optimistically, this beginner’s guide on how to use Betfair Exchange cleared any misconceptions you may have had about Betfair platform and as always, if you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to contact us or to leave a comment below.