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Get better at betting online with this comprehensive betting guide that doesn’t just apply to esports, but to any other kind of sports or odds. The guides establish the fundamentals – via the 10 commandments – and provides a practical overview of various good advice and tools.
The guides are written by our notorious betting expert, Kenny Powers. He works on a daily basis at one of the biggest betting sites in the world and you could say that he knows his stuff.
In fact, he’s so good at both esports and football betting, that within our group, he goes by the nickname “The Oracle”. Kenny does not place a bet unless he did his homework and he’s got the right mindset of a successful bettor.
Kenny has taken his time to share his experience, best tips and tricks, for you to avoid common mistakes and to become a more successful bettor at esports or any other sport.
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We do not promise gold and prosperity. This betting guide provides you with several useful tools and a sensible mindset, but it is no shortcut to wealth. If you want to become better at esports betting or any other sports, it will cost you both money, time and energy.
Let’s make one thing abundantly clear: There are very few people that can make a living from betting.
Making a living out of betting on esports, football, tennis or any kind of odds, is only being mastered by very few people around the world. For that, you must be determined, cold as ice, super-disciplined and insanely talented. It may be that these characteristics suit just you, but if they don’t, don’t expect to be able to quit your job by following this guide.
It’s in fact better if you forget about huge leverage effects and unrealistic, financial ambitions. Start with baby steps and lower stakes to see how it goes. When your Money Management (will come to that) shows a good profit, you can gradually increase your stakes.
Always remember: If you’re not careful, you can lose money faster than you think.
18+ Gamble Responsibly | You have to be at least 18 years old to place bets on sports. We also recommend you to gamble responsibly and never put more money at stake than you are willing to lose or that your economy can handle.
Now with all that out of the way – let’s get to the point!
To become a successful bettor, you need to learn the basics of betting and what you should watch out for, not to make common mistakes. Here I list the 10 most important things that you should be aware of and consider before placing any bets.
There is no way to look into the future. Unless you have bribed the referee and the opponent’s players, then you do NOT KNOW what a match is going to end. Not even if it is Astralis vs sAw for example. Even the biggest favorites can stumble, and nothing is certain. So do not bet without looking at the odds, otherwise you will lose. Maybe not every time but in the long run a deficit is inevitable. You have to take the odds and put it in proportion to the chance of it being a winning bet. In other words: Basic probability theory. Okay, it may not be super sexy but there is no way around it if you want to win: Use odds assessments and only play value bets!
Self-knowledge is the alpha and omega when you bet. You must understand what you are doing and have the energy to find the necessary information to draw your own pin-pointed conclusion. If you do not have real insight into the teams the league the championship or the match that you are going to bet on, then do not bet on it! Also, be careful with listening to “talented people” who claim to have the insight (the so-called expert esports betters). Use tips and predictions as inspiration but make sure that you do your own homework and make your decision upon that.
A competent chance assessment is also necessary. Anyone can throw out some numbers – but are they realistic or not?
Statistics are indeed an indispensable tool when betting, but the bookmakers set their odds based on the statistics which means you have no advantage. On the contrary, you are a step or two behind. The bookmakers will often have researched even further and adjusted their odds based on other significant factors. These factors also need to be checked – maybe you can even catch the bookmakers on the wrong foot by knowing more than they do.
That’s why knowledge give you power in betting. Do your homework and try to find value that the bookmakers missed. Perhaps they think that one team is the favourite and they put a very low odds on that team. But perhaps they missed that they are missing their best player and have to play with a substitute, which gives the other team a much bigger chance to a win.
“There are three types of lies: Lies, damn lies, and statistics.” ― Benjamin Disraeli
Let’s say that you are great at betting and know everything about value bets, chance assessment and information-hunting. Now, you can still fail miserably with betting if you do not have control over your finances. Things will still go the wrong anyway if you don’t know how to control your finances and how to use them wisely. In betting, this is called money management and it is very important part of betting that you have to learn. You need to know how much money you can and should put on each bet, depending on your risk assessment and the value of the bet.
The most important thing: You must keep track of everything!
Read more about Money Management in the 10th commandment below where you also find a link to the Money Management guide.
Have an account with multiple bookmakers and betting exchanges. This way you can get better betting options and higher odds. When looking for a new bookmaker feel free to look for a bonus but do not have it as the only criterion. The most important thing is that this is a bookmaker you actually intend to use. And to be fair, there is actually a vast selection of great betting sites out there.
There is no betting system that can guarantee you winnings. It does not exist. Whether it is called the Greenwood system, the Hence ystem, the Martingale system et cetera. None of them are bulletproof. The only road to profit is paved with value betting, knowledge and extensive research. However, if you want to try any kind of betting system or strategy, we recommend the J. Kelly betting system.
Underdogs at a high odds can be as good to bet on as favorites – in fact, they are often better. Lots of people play blindly and unconsciously on the favorite which raises the odds on the underdog. The reason for this is that, as soon as the bookmakers notice that the majority of the players bet on the favorite we, they will lower the odds continuously as long as the bets keep coming on that team. So a very low odds on a favorite team, can actually be slightly misleading.
This means that you can actually find great value in the underdog if you through your research and knowledge, come to the conclusion that the underdogs have a good chance of winning.
As a starting point, it can be recommended that you play singles (one match per betting slip) and avoid doubles, trebles as well as accumulators. The reason is the simple fact that with a given bookmaker it can be difficult to find enough value bets to be able to construct a healthy accumulator. It’s also simple mathematics, for every match you add to your betting slip, the odds will increase, but the risk of losing your stake will actually increase even more.
Avoid impulse and desperation bets! Always do your research and base your bets on the subjective outcome of your predictions. Don’t just put a bet for the sake of betting, unless you are comfortable with losing the stake, both mentally and financially.
Never play to catch up or chase losses. Betting is a long-distance run and not a sprint. It’s all about how it goes in the long run so don’t panic about a loss or two. If the losses are due to errors in your betting strategy, then correct your strategy. Play it cool and thoughtful. And remember to follow these 10 commandments!
It’s crucial that you keep track of your bets, both the wins and the losses. This is the only way to really learn from your successes and mistakes. The most common and simple way of doing this is to use a well structured excel document. There is a vast selection of tools online that you can also use, to help you keep track of your progress. Some of them cost money, and others are free, some are very basic while others are very detailed and more complex. As a beginner, we highly recommend that you stay with more basic tools and Money management strategies.
If you are a beginner, we have created a basic and simple to use, Excel sheet, where you can add all your bets that you placed. This sheet helps you to keep track of your wins, losses, bankroll and more so that you get a good overview of your progress.
There are many whimsical betting terms, expressions and many foreign phrases such as value betting, sure betting, spread, money line, split ball, Asian handicap and so on. If you are not familiar with these terms and if you feel a bit lost and confused within the different sportsbooks, we have put together a glossary with common phrases and terms that you will encounter and actually need to understand when using a sportsbook.