Anyone who has ever played in a casino will probably have heard the term ‘the house edge’, but far fewer are aware that there is a similar concept where sportsbooks are concerned, namely, the sports betting edge.
When it comes to edge betting, it’s a principle you need to fully understand and that’s exactly what our guide is going to do. We’ll begin by explaining the edge and move on to how to leverage the potential of using it. Lastly, we’ll present you with our own methods for making the most of your sports betting.
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Having a clear understanding of how the house edge works in a casino environment will make it much easier for you to grasp how a similar algorithm is applied to sports betting. Many of you might think that casinos make their profit from players’ losing bets. And to some extent, you would be right about that.
However, there’s also a guaranteed profit built into each casino game as well, just as there is in live betting sites. Let’s take roulette to begin with, since it is probably the most visual example. An American roulette wheel has numbers from one to 36 plus two zeros, so 38 choices in total, theoretically making the odds 38 to one.
However, the payout for winning on a single number is 36 to one, meaning that the house edge is 5.25%. Roulette is just one example; all casino games have a different house edge. Playing blackjack is one of the better options for the bettor; it has a very low house edge to begin with and there is a way to eliminate the edge entirely, but that’s something we’ll be explaining another time.
When it comes to sports betting, the built-in profit margin isn’t generally referred to as an ‘edge’. You are more likely to see it described as the ‘vigorish’, ‘vig’, or ‘juice’. But at the end of the day, call it what you will, the betting edge represents the amount of profit the sportsbook will make regardless of the outcome of an event.
So every time you place a bet at a sportsbook, the odds and spreads you’re offered have already been adjusted to make sure the sportsbook makes a profit, regardless of whether you win or lose.
Occasionally, you’ll encounter bets where the adjustment has not been made correctly and the advantage, or betting edge, is in your favor. You can also eliminate the edge in some cases by using a sportsbook bonus code if available. We’ll tell you more about that later, but next, we’ll show you an example to get the principle clear in your mind.
We are going to use a single coin toss to explain the betting edge in very simple terms. There are only two outcomes to a coin toss: heads or tails, in other words you have a 50% (even) chance of selecting the right one, which equates to 2.00 in decimal odds.
A sportsbook will reduce the actual odds to build in its edge and you will be offered the bet at 1.98 for either heads or tails to win. With just two bets placed, one on each outcome, the sportsbook has balanced its book and is guaranteed a profit of 2%.
In reality, sports bets are far more complex than this example and many more wagers are placed, which leaves room for an occasional miscalculation by the sportsbook. Edge betting is therefore all about spotting those mistakes and cashing in on them.
Every bet you place has an EV, as you might have seen referenced in our other Expected Value betting guides. It’s basically a way of calculating whether the bet will win or lose. However, it goes a little deeper than that, because it doesn’t give a true measurement when it is based on a single bet.
A better definition would be that the EV is a measure of the expected win/lose ratio of bets placed at the same odds and spreads over a period of time. We know that is going to sound a little confusing and vague to you right now, so we’ll explain a little further.
Let’s say you have placed 100 bets over the course of a week at exactly the same odds (the precise odds figure isn’t relevant). So, at the end of the week you now look at the ratio between losing and winning bets.
If the percentage of losing bets is higher, you have a negative Expected Value (-EV), but if you’ve had more wins, then it indicates a positive Expected Value +EV. Obviously, the latter is what all bettors aim for.
For those bettors who rely solely on a mathematically oriented edge betting strategy, the EV has a huge significance. Betting this way requires a substantial bankroll as there is the potential for lengthy periods of showing a -EV before the tables turn in your favor.
So now you know what you’re looking for, but how do you find it? Well, the most popular sport to bet on is football, no contest. Consequently, some NFL matches will have more bets placed on them during each game than all of the other sports put together.
So, in terms of sports betting, NFL matches also have the biggest range of betting markets available and more in-play betting opportunities than most others. Because there is so much to cover, they also make a prime hunting ground for +EV bettors.
We could show you other examples, but just sticking to that one football match for a minute, there’s no way that you can possibly find, calculate and place your bets fast enough to keep up with the sheer speed at which betting edge football odds and spreads change. That’s where the need for software comes in.
As we have shown you, it is possible to make a profit in the long term by relying solely on placing mathematically calculated bets which exploit the occasional errors made by sportsbooks. It’s all well and good if you’re happy to go that route, but it does not allow for any deviation from the prescribed method and if you’re focusing on trying to work all the details out on your own, it could seriously reduce your enjoyment of the sports themselves.
Edge betting is not the only strategy that requires complete attention to the figures alone. Arbitrage betting is another example, although the methods for placing bets are different from edge betting methods - you can find out more about this by using our arbitrage finder. There are a lot of useful parts to both strategies and there is a way to use those, together with other sports betting resources, that will give you the best of both worlds.
First off, we will start by reassuring you that we are not about to present you with any ‘system’ that relies on any type of betting that is illegal in the US. We do not indulge in such practices and we highly recommend that you avoid them too.
Our sports betting method relies on signing up with legitimately licensed US top sportsbook apps. All the sites we cover are highly reputable and well-known sporting brands. We simply show you the best of their bonuses and ongoing sports betting promotions and suggest ways to use them to their best advantage.
On our website, you’ll find everything you need to get started right away. You’ll find details relating to all of the different legal US sportsbooks and the US states they currently operate in.
On a daily basis, you’ll need to check out all of the bonuses and betting deals for the sportsbooks you’ve signed up with and opt in to any that appeal to you. Now it’s all about tracking down a lucrative bet that will give you the betting edge. For this part you could use software, or search manually with the help of an odds/spreads comparison tool.
You’ll see that this method of sports betting includes many different things. Making the best use of the resources that are already out there, harnessing the best parts of various betting strategies and allowing for a level of individual choice in your betting.
Using those tools to bet wisely will enable you to make a moderate profit as you go. Most of all, it won’t need to diminish your reasons for betting in the first place: your love of the sports themselves.
We’ve covered a lot of ground in this guide and we hope that you’ve found it interesting and enjoyable to read. Regardless of your own betting style, we think it’s important to understand how sports betting works ‘behind the scenes’ and to use that information to your advantage whenever possible.
We hope by now you have a reasonable understanding of what the sports betting edge represents to you as a bettor and the level of commitment required to rely entirely on edge betting alone. We also trust that our take on sports betting has some appeal for you and hope you will give it some thought.
In very simple terms, the sports betting edge is all about how your sportsbook makes a profit, regardless of the outcome of any event. Our guide to the betting edge will explain it all in detail and we’ll even give you some tips on how to place bets using that information. Intrigued? Well head straight over to PromoGuy to get the full picture!
At the end of the day, every bet that is placed at a sportsbook has a sports betting edge. That is simply a fact that exists, regardless of the specific betting strategy you are using. It’s a tough subject to get your head around, but here at PromoGuy, we’ve prepared a number of guides to explain it in detail and its relevance to specific strategies like arbitrage betting. They are all yours to read for free, so come on over and take a look.
When your sportsbook posts odds and spreads, it has already ensured that it will make a profit regardless of the outcome of the event itself; that is where the term ‘betting edge’ comes in. It therefore has a bearing on every bet that you place. Here at PromoGuy, we’ve developed a unique method of betting that can negate the sports betting edge for a decent percentage of bets. Head over and see how we do it.
Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or www.800gambler.org; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or www.gamblersanonymous.org.
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