Betting exchanges allow punters to bet peer to peer eliminating the need for a bookmaker. This basically means that you can not only back a result, but also lay a result essentially becoming your own bookmaker. As a result you can often find inflated prices on betting exchanges compared with traditional bookmakers due to the lack of ‘vig’ (Vig or ‘juice’ is a term used to mean the money in which bookmakers can charge you to use their service. It’s not a number you will see but by offering a slightly lower price of odds on a market they can then make a profit no matter the result) charged.
Benefits of Betting Exchanges
Betfair, who are the largest betting exchange in the world, publicly claim that you can get up to 25% better odds through their betting exchange when compared to that of traditional bookmakers. You aren’t essentially betting against a betting exchange, they are merely providing the service. You are betting against fellow punters allowing you to pick up much better odds as a result. And better odds mean more winnings.
The diversity a betting exchange offers you compared to traditional bookmakers is massive. Instead of looking around for a price that suits you on a bookmaker, with an exchange you can wait until whichever market you want to bet on hits the price you want to take. On the flip side, if you think the price looks way too short you can then lay the bet to essentially back against it.
Exchanges are great for applying betting systems. The ability to lay means you can use other bookmakers for certain markets and then lock in profits using the exchange as prices begin to change. Live betting is especially good on the exchanges and guaranteeing profits.
Disadvantages of Betting Exchanges
Betting exchanges do have an added cost that you don’t come across at the bookies – they make their money by charging a commission on winnings. Most range from 3-5% which doesn’t sound a lot, but it’s a sum that soon adds up. Having said this, even after you have paid your commissions you will often find that you have received more than you would have done at a traditional bookmaker, but it’s a factor that many punters forget to take into account when comparing odds.
The primary arguement for the traditional bookmaker model over that of the betting exchange is in the promotions they offer. Because the odds are better, and the exchanges are working on a smaller margin than the bookies, it means they are generally less generous when it comes to free bets and betting specials.
Something else which we should point out, is that you cannot use the betting exchange platform to place an accumulator bet. However, most of the betting exchanges now bridge that gap by offering multiple bets in the traditional bookmaker format alongside their exchange.
Betfair, Betdaq and WBX Comparison
The list of betting exchanges is a little small when compared to the number of bookmakers out there. If you’re looking for some peer-to-peer betting action, here are your choices:
- Betfair are the daddy when it comes to the betting exchanges. They offer what each of their competitor’s offers and often a lot more. They have free live streaming, masses of markets, fixed odds availability and probably most importantly of all, a player base that allows you to match up on some of the more obscure betting markets. Click here to visit Betfair.
- Betdaq is certainly a lot more limited than Betfair. They don’t currently have the market coverage, the added features or player database to compete in all honesty but they are growing rapidly and may become a larger threat to Betfairs crown in the years to come. Their biggest pull for punters is the fact that only charge 3% commission compared to Berfair’s 5% standard rate. What seems like a small number can actually mean thousands of pounds difference, especially for the high rollers out there. Betdaq also offer a loyalty program which gives punters points to spend on gadgets and DVD’s each time a bet is placed. Click here to visit Betdaq.
- WBX bring up the rear out of the three and are a more condensed version of Betdaq. They aren’t a million miles from Betdaq, but again, aren’t in the same league as Betfair. That being said, what they do, they do well. From the sports on offer you can often find a diverse selection of markets even if activity is on the slow side. Click here to visit WBX.