Sports betting is simple, fun, and provides us with an opportunity to make money! However, beginners shouldn't rush into betting. While sports betting is straightforward, getting everything right at the beginning is not easy.
If you approach sports betting in the wrong way, you're unlikely to enjoy it, let alone profit from it. You won't be on the path to making consistent profits.
We're not discouraging you from sports betting—far from it. We just want you to be prepared and have the best chance to make money.
We hope that by reading this article, you'll develop good habits right from the start. Here are the top 20 sports betting tips we offer to beginners. Yes, you read that right—twenty. There's a lot to learn whether you're a complete novice or just need a refresher.
Please note, regardless of your ultimate goal, you should follow all these betting tips. They'll help ensure you have a lot of fun, and if your goal is to consistently make money, they'll provide a solid foundation.
Before we dive into the details, here's a quick overview of all our sports betting tips:
Believe in Us: Our first tip is simple. Believe in the advice we provide. Everything we suggest has a solid reason, and we guarantee that following it will benefit you, both in the short and long term. This applies not only to the tips on this page but to all the advice provided in our entire sports betting guide.
Set Achievable Goals: Winning some bets in sports betting isn't too hard. Anyone with little knowledge of a sport can make accurate predictions at times. However, there's a significant difference between winning some bets and consistently winning for actual profits. The latter is tough, very tough. In the long run, only a small percentage of sports bettors are profitable. The reality of sports betting is that most people lose money. As a beginner, understand that your likelihood of losing is greater than winning. Some people start sports betting thinking they can beat the bookmakers with their sports knowledge. This is a mistake! Profiting from sports betting is absolutely possible, but it requires more than just some sports knowledge. Even widespread knowledge alone isn't enough. Becoming a successful sports bettor requires doing many things right, so don't assume you'll win from the start. Setting realistic, achievable goals is essential. Your early goals should be based on learning more and gradually improving. Once you gain some experience, you can start setting more complex goals. Of course, the goal might just be to have fun. This is entirely achievable in the short term. In fact, focusing on enjoying the experience might be the best approach as a beginner. The more serious stuff can come later.
Learn All the Basics: We've said it at the beginning of this article: sports betting is very simple, but that doesn't mean you should jump right in. Learning the basics before you start betting will enhance your overall sports betting experience. Basic knowledge alone might not help you achieve overall profits, but it will set you on the right path. Luckily, we've summarized the most important sports betting basics in one article. This is particularly useful for beginners and covers all of the following:
One of our team members wrote an excellent blog post about how sports betting works, which is a great read for beginners.
How Sports Betting Works: A Complete Guide to Betting, Choosing Websites, and More
Registering with reputable sports betting companies will help you understand how online sports betting works. Betting on point spreads and moneylines is the most common way to bet on specific teams. Over/under bets relate to the total score in a specific match...
Explanation of Fixed Odds Betting
Components of Sports Betting
Different Types of Sports Bets
Alternative Forms of Sports Betting
How to Bet with Bookmakers
Why Bookmakers Make Money
Set a Budget and Use a Staking Plan: Every tip on this page is important, but none more so than this one. No matter how much money you have or what your short-term or long-term goals are, you must set a budget. Remember, the likelihood of losing money is much greater than winning. You need to decide how much money you're willing to risk and ensure you won't start taking bigger risks if you lose all your funds. You can set daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly budgets. We've even heard of people setting aside money without any specific timeline. How you set your budget is entirely up to you. Just make sure it's an amount you can afford and that you're determined to stick to.
Spending too much on betting can lead to various problems. No one has unlimited money, so everyone must manage their finances to some extent. Certain living costs should always be the priority. Betting with disposable income is fine, but betting with money needed for other things isn't. That's when gambling can start to get out of control, and the consequences can be dreadful. Just sticking to the budget can help you avoid this.
Ideally, you should also use a staking plan. A staking plan is essentially a set of rules determining how much you should stake on each bet relative to the size of your budget. We recommend staking around 1-2%, absolutely no more than 5%. This allows you to withstand some losses without depleting your entire budget too quickly. Using a staking plan has other benefits:
We explain these benefits in more detail in our articles on managing funds and using staking plans. We also provide many useful tips on how to effectively manage your budget while sports betting.
The likelihood of chasing losses during a bad run is minimized.
It's less likely to lose money earned from good runs.
More rational betting decisions are more likely.
Be Selective: One of the appealing aspects of sports betting is the number of choices it offers. Nowadays, we can bet on almost any sport, any match, event, league, or competition. We also have many different types of bets to choose from. In summary, there are plenty of opportunities to make money.
However, being selective is crucial. Placing too many bets can be as destructive as wagering too much money, as it can also lead to losing money more quickly. When you're placing a lot of bets, it's hard to make consistently wise choices, so it's best to focus on finding genuine good opportunities.
Thoughtful betting almost certainly produces better results than random betting. We recommend carefully considering how many different sports you want to bet on and how many different leagues or competitions within those sports. It's better to specialize in a few areas where you can develop expertise.
Understand the Concept of Value: This is a fundamental concept in sports betting. Value is a term that describes the relationship between the odds of a selection and the probability of the associated outcome happening. When the probability of an outcome happening is greater than the implied probability of the odds, you have a value bet.
For example, if you believe a team has a 60% chance of winning a match but the bookmakers are offering odds equivalent to a probability of 40%, that's a value bet. Betting on value bets helps you secure a profit in the long run. Learn to calculate implied probabilities and understand how odds reflect them. Value betting is a strategy that professional bettors use to beat the bookmakers consistently.
Learn Some Basic Betting Strategies: While betting strategies can't guarantee a win, they can improve your chances of making money. There are several simple strategies you can learn, such as:
Martingale System: This strategy involves doubling your bet after each loss. When you eventually win, you'll recover all your losses and make a profit equal to your initial bet. However, this system requires a substantial bankroll and is risky because losing streaks can quickly deplete your funds.
Fibonacci System: Similar to the Martingale system, but instead of doubling your bet after each loss, you increase it following the Fibonacci sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, etc.). This system provides a slower progression, reducing the risk of large losses, but it's not foolproof.
Kelly Criterion: This formula helps you calculate the optimal bet size based on your perceived edge and the odds offered. It's a mathematically sound approach to maximizing your bankroll over the long term.
Arbitrage Betting: This strategy involves placing bets on all possible outcomes of an event using multiple bookmakers to guarantee a profit, regardless of the result. While it requires significant effort and speed to execute, it's a risk-free way to make money if done correctly.
Handicapping: This involves analyzing factors like team statistics, player performance, weather conditions, and injuries to predict the outcome of a match more accurately. While it requires knowledge and research, handicapping can give you an edge in certain situations.
Always Compare Odds and Lines: Different bookmakers offer varying odds and lines for the same events. To maximize your potential profits, it's essential to compare odds and lines across different platforms before placing your bets. Even a slight difference in odds can significantly impact your long-term profitability.
Keep Records of Your Bets: Keeping a detailed record of your bets is crucial for evaluating your performance and identifying areas for improvement. Record essential information such as the date, event, type of bet, odds, stake, and result. Analyzing your betting history helps you identify successful strategies and avoid repeating costly mistakes.
Understand the Jargon: Familiarize yourself with common betting terminology, including phrases related to odds, types of bets, and betting strategies. Understanding the language used in sports betting helps you navigate betting platforms, communicate with other bettors, and make informed decisions.
Ignore Personal Biases: Emotional attachment to a team or player can cloud your judgment and lead to irrational betting decisions. Avoid letting personal biases influence your bets. Instead, rely on objective analysis and statistical data to make well-informed choices.
Don't Get Overconfident in Wins or Discouraged by Losses: Winning streaks and losing streaks are natural in sports betting. While celebrating wins is enjoyable, don't let them make you overconfident. Similarly, don't be discouraged by losses. Stay focused on making rational, data-driven decisions, regardless of your recent results.
Invest Time in Research: Thorough research is a cornerstone of successful sports betting. Stay updated on team news, player injuries, weather conditions, and other factors that can influence the outcome of a match. The more informed you are, the better your betting decisions will be.
Trust Your Judgment: While gathering information is essential, trust your judgment when making betting decisions. Develop your analytical skills and intuition over time. If you've done thorough research and analysis, have confidence in your choices, even if they go against popular opinions.
Avoid Betting Under the Influence: Betting while under the influence of alcohol or drugs impairs your judgment and can lead to impulsive, irrational bets. Always place bets with a clear mind to make well-considered decisions.
Join Betting Forums: Engaging with online betting communities and forums allows you to exchange ideas, strategies, and insights with other experienced bettors. Participating in discussions can broaden your knowledge and provide valuable perspectives.
Take Regular Breaks: Sports betting can be intense, especially during busy seasons with numerous events. Avoid burnout by taking regular breaks to relax and recharge. Balance your betting activities with other hobbies and interests to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Remember, sports betting should be enjoyable and engaging. By following these tips and staying disciplined, you can enhance your sports betting experience and increase your chances of long-term success. Good luck!