Even the newbies in the sports betting sector will have heard of betting odds. But what do they actually say? What impact do they have on customers’ picks? Are there good and bad betting odds? We would like to answer all these questions in more detail in the following guide. 

What does a betting odds say?

The betting odds are set by the online bookmaker. It lays the foundation for the betting offer, which you as a customer can accept or reject. The offer expresses the approximate probability of an outcome. For the favorite, the betting odds will be very low, but the underdog, on the contrary, can show a very high figure.

You place your bet in sports betting specifically on this betting odds. For example, if it has a value of 2.5, it means that your bet will be multiplied by 2.5. For combination bets, all odds including the game total are multiplied.

How do the betting providers calculate the odds?

betting providers calculate the odds

But how is a betting odds created in practice? The bookmakers let as much information as possible flow into your consideration. In soccer, for example, this can be the standings, missing players, the current form curve, the head-to-head comparison or the home or away strength. Based on this information, the bookie calculates the probability of occurrence of a result, from which the betting odds can be derived.

We want to show you this retroactively on the Champions League final 2017/18 between Juventus Turin and FC Barcelona. The betting provider comes to the following assessment after its analysis:

  • Victory Juventus Turin: 11 percent
  • Draw: 27 percent
  • Victory FC Barcelona: 62 percent

From these basic values, the fair odds are formed according to the formula 100/percent:

  • Victory Juventus Turin: 9.09
  • Draw: 3,7
  • Victory FC Barcelona: 1,61

Finally, the bookmaker now adds in his profit margin. Assuming he wants to earn eight percent on the Champions League final, he sets an odds key of 92 percent.

The mathematical formula for this is: final odds = fair odds x margin key / 100. This results in the following betting offer:

  • Victory Juventus Turin: 8.36
  • Draw: 3.4
  • Win FC Barcelona: 1,48

How can I, as a player, counter this?

Since the bookmaker has already included his margin, he always goes into the bet with a small advantage. The customer can only counteract at this point with appropriate expertise. It is important to find so-called value bets, in which the probability of occurrence of an outcome is estimated to be higher than the bookie specifies in its odds.

What does the odds key say and which one is good?

In our example, we have applied an odds key of 92 percent. The bookmaker would thus end up in the midfield. The best online betting providers work with constant, mathematical payout approaches of 94 percent and higher.

How important are the betting odds in tips?

How important are the betting odds in tips?

The value of betting odds is simply underestimated by many recreational gamblers. The idea that “I’m betting on 2.1 or 2.15, it doesn’t matter” can be considered a huge mistake. Even these small fluctuations can add up to a plus or minus of several hundred euros within a few months. We would like to illustrate this with a small example.

For this purpose, let’s assume that customer A bets ten euros on an odds of 2.1 for one month, but his friend player B bets on an offer of 2.15 in each case.

Assuming that both sports bettors place all their bets correctly, the difference after 30 days is as follows:

  • Customer A: 10 x 2.1 = €21 x 30 days = €630
  • Customer B: 10 x 2,15 = 21,50 € x 30 days = 645 €

With combination bets and with higher stakes, the differences become even more obvious due to deviating odds.

Betting odds knowledge necessary for a successful sports bettor

Every sports bettor should have a basic knowledge of betting odds. Only those who can “read” and implement the offers of the bookmakers will successfully place their bets in the long run. It is important to always bet on the best betting odds. It is recommended to register with three to five bookies at the same time. We recommend our odds comparison to get an overview of the best odds.

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