Sportsbetting Online – Wagering Money On Sports

Sports betting is the most popular form of gambling, be it online or in a land based environment. Millions are wagered on various sports events every day. It’s not just countries like UK, USA and Australia where betting on sports is common courtesy. Lately we have seen a huge increase in demand of betting sites serving South America, where Brazil and Argentina having a massive bettor community. Well, it’s only a question of time until bookmakers will heavily start to target those markets.

Though, this article won’t be about business, at least it wasn’t meant to be like that. Instead, this is where you will learn about what betting is, how betting odds and betting types differ and where you can bet online. It’s not necessarily sporting events that you can bet on, by the way. Pretty much anything in the world, including political events, voting for European parliament and some other random events are often offered as possible bets.

How Betting Works?

You place a wager and watch the game to determine whether you’re going to win. Yes – it is that simple. In hindsight that is absolutely true, but there is a fair bit more to betting sports than just this, including spread betting, exchange, calculating vigorish and much more. Well, while I will try to cover that stuff as well, what I’m mainly going after is a sound sports-betting 101 guide that will help you to learn the basics of placing a bet online!

First thing that you need to be aware is ”vig” or vigorish. This term actually comes from the Russian language, more specifically word winnings, which translates to ”vygrishi”. This is a commission that bookie or online betting site take in order to lock in some profit for themselves. Lets take a look at an example of this.

John and Harvey both want to wager $100 on a soccer game that is expected to be very tight. For purposes of this example, lets assume that both of these teams are equal in strength and thus also have an even chance of winning. If they would make a wager against each other, without betting sites involved, either John or Harvey would have a chance to win $200 by risking $100.

Now the bookmaker steps and offers each of these guys a chance to bet on this game through a bookie. It’s not different than betting against each other, since if they bet on opposite teams, one is going to win, while the other will lose.

Though, unlike it was in the example of both guys betting directly against each other, now neither of them will have a chance to win $200, with the bookmaker being a ”middle man”. There will be a fee charged, usually 4-6%, for providing their services to bettors. So now either of them would likely have a shot at winning around $190 instead of $200 in the same game.

So why would anyone bet with online betting sites instead of with John or Harvey? Well, for one, online bookies offer betting odds pretty much always, while the same often won’t be the case with your friends. You can also wager large sums and sometimes even find valuebets, where instead of getting charged a ”vig”, you find odds that will be +EV in longterm – earning you money with every bet made.

Betting Odds

I remember getting really confused, when I saw American odds offered for a game. I recall it was something like +100 and I had no clue whatever the meant for me as a bettor. I’m from Europe and am used to decimal odds, such as 1.50 on a game with definitive favorite. Yet, there was a completely new world I was introduced to at Bovada, a US friendly betting site. After that, I learned that neither of these odds variations are used in the UK and Ireland, where fractional odds are the most popular.


Moneyline, betting odds used in the United States, are easy to understand once you get a grasp of the concept used in these. There are two types of moneyline wagers – positive and negative.

When moneyline is positive, it shows how much you will win on a $100 wager. Lets say that the betting odds are +300. How much would you win on a $100 wager? The answer is $300.

When moneyline is negative, it shows how much money you have to wager in order to win $100. So -300 would mean that in order to win $100, you have to wager $300.

Moneyline odds are only used for straight up (fixed odds betting) and are not offered for spread betting.

Decimal Odds

Decimal odds are the ones that are used in Europe, Canada and Australia. I honestly feel that they are easiest to understand, but that’s probably because I am indeed from Europe myself.

There are no positives or negatives with decimal betting odds and they are presented in a format of a decimal number, such as 1.55 . So lets say you want to wager $100 at 1.55 betting odds – how much do you stand to win? The answer is $155 and that can be calculated by simply multiplying your wager with the odds – 100* 1.55 = 155

Fractional Odds

Fractional odds are preferred in the United Kingdom and Ireland. These are viewed as standard in these countries and referred to as traditional ones. These odds simply quote the net amount that will be paid out to you as a bettor, relative to your stake.

Lets say the betting odds are 4/1 (four to one) and you wager $100. How much do you stand to win?To easily calculate this, use your wager as a single unit in these odds – number ”1” is your wager ($100), so how much would 4 be? You got it, it’s $400!

Don’t worry too much if you didn’t manage to understand any of the odds just yet. Below you’ll find a chart with most common odds offered in various variations of them. It’s printable, so make sure to do just that!

What Can You Bet On?

The honest answer is anything and I’m not kidding. Nowadays betting sites are trying their best to please you however they can, so offering a chance to bet on stuff like Eurovision, Politics, Superbowl, Champions League Finals, El Clasico, Olympics and other very popular events is exactly what is done.

Wait a minute! Lets not run through specific events way too fast and make this easier on the eye by categorizing sports you can bet on.

Soccer (Football in Europe) is the most popular sport, related to betting, in the world, especially when events, such as the World Cup or Euro 2016 take place. The spectators simply go nuts! Though, betting on major leagues, such as The Premiere League, Champions League, La Liga, Serie A and many others.

Basketball is also a popular sport among bettors, especially in the United States, which is home for NBA. Though, other leagues, such as EuroLeague and Spanish ACB are known to have a large following of bettors as well.

Football is a widely popular sport among US and Australian bettors, especially when it comes to the NFL and SuperBowl. The latter is easily the biggest event of the year for US bettors and bookmakers alike!

Ice Hockey is certainly not less popular among bettors than the other two sports already listed. In fact, it could be equal at the very least. Two of the most popular leagues include NHL and KHL, while events include IIHF World Championships that run every year.

Tennis seems to have picked up in terms of betting popularity too, at least it looked like that during Roland Garros cup that took place from May to June. Tennis betting market has definitely multiplied in size a couple of times with the biggest events being Wimbledon, US Open, French Open and Australian Open.

F1 is very popular among those that are looking to bet on car or bike racing, so is Nascar and Moto GP. For those of you, who want to try something more calming, Cricket, Darts or Golf betting should be a great fit. Lets not forget about Horse Racing, which is one of the most popular betting markets in the UK.

Betting Picks, Predictions and Final Thoughts

Betting, similarly to poker, is a gambling form of skill. It’s completely possible to be a winning sports-bettor and make a living betting sports. From the research me and my friends have done, I can tell you that only about 1.5% of the bettors are longterm winners.

Why did I just point this out? Well, if you’re looking for some picks or predictions, it’s important that you understand that winning picks won’t come for free.

Lastly, make sure you pay attention to what betting sites you put your money at. Most bookmakers are solid or very safe, but there are always some bad apples in the basket and that’s also the case with bookies, so make sure to do your homework.