Spread Betting in Online Sports Betting
All top-rated Canadian online sports betting sites offer punters the opportunity to put money on both local and international events, with a variety of markets. While the majority of bets placed online are fixed odds, there are plenty of other types like exchange and pari-mutuel to choose from. There is also spread betting, and this is perhaps the riskiest, but also the most rewarding, as it gives you the opportunity to win multiple times your bet stake if you are able to predict the final score.
Know the Basics
This bet type should not be confused with wagering on the point spread, also known as totals or over/unders. In some ways, the 2 are similar, but with spread online sports betting the amount you stand to win or lose changes depending on how right or how wrong you are with your prediction. With standard totals, the bookmaker will post a total score for the game.
For example, if there is a Rugby match between England and Australia, the total posted may be set at around 31.5. This is the combined scoring total of both teams after full time. If you were to place over/under wager, you would simply have to predict whether the actual total will be under 31.5 (31 or less) or above 31.5 (32 or more). The 0.5 is added to ensure that no exact scores are posted. This is a fixed odds wager where you are paid out according to the odds posted at the time of the wager.
This is where spread betting is different. While it may use the same over/under concept, the odds are not fixed, and payouts/losses can increase or decrease depending on the final score.
How to Set the Stake
The first step is to set your stake. Most Canadian bookmakers will let you set a stake anywhere from $1 to $10. The stake is tied directly to the point number and determines how much you will be paid out or how much you could lose. For anyone just starting, it is best to set the stake as low as possible to avoid incurring a major loss. If we use the above example with spread betting, we can see how the system works.
If we predict that the score will be over 31.5, (32 or more) we will be paid out our stake amount for every point over 32. Let’s say the final combined score was 47 and we set out stake at $5. The point difference is 47-32 or 15. We will be paid out $5×15 or $75, which is far more than what we would get from a simple fixed odds wager. The downside is that you can also lose big if your prediction is incorrect.
Winning Big and Losing Big
Let’s say we set our stake at $10 for the above example, confident in our ability to predict the score line. We decide the score will be over (32 or more). However, the game does not go according to our predictions and at the end of full time, the final combined score is 17 points. Instead of being liable for a set stake amount, we now have to pay in our stake amount ($10) for every point below 31.
There are 14 points between the total and the final combined score, so we are liable for 14x $10 or $140. This far more than what we would stand to lose if we had stick to fixed odds bets.
If done correctly, spread betting can be extremely profitable, but you need to implement skill and strategy wherever possible to come out ahead. Take a look at a few strategies that can seriously improve your results:
Always Bet on Knowledge
Understanding the sport is the first step. With spread betting, knowing the basics is not good enough. If you are going to be putting money on each point above or below the spread, you need to have a keen idea of exactly how each game can turn out.
A good way to start is to predict the final score before the bookmaker has even posted the spread. When the spread does come out, you can judge for yourself how far off your estimation is and the bet would be worth your while.
Calculate Your Losses First
It may seem a pessimistic view, but since your losses are not capped, the first thing you should do before placing a bet is to calculate your potential losses. If you are point betting on a basketball game and there is potential for the score to go over or under by 30 points, consider what your losses could be at $2 per point bet versus $10 per point bet, which could set you back $300.
Consider the Stop-Loss Mechanism
If you ask any seasoned punter they will tell you that sports betting online is more of an art form than anything else. It takes time to feel the flow of the game. For anyone starting out, a good strategy is to implement a stop-loss. This is a mechanism where you can define a point in the bet in which you can cancel the entire bet and take the loss. This ensures that your losses are kept to a minim when things go wrong.
Pay Attention to Handicaps
When two teams are unevenly matched, a bookmaker will give the underdog a virtual point advantage. Using spread betting in handicap circumstances makes it far easier to wager points on the underdog. In most cases, the favourites will squeeze through with a single point, if at all. This leaves plenty of opportunity for spread bettors to make huge profits.
Take a Small Profit at The Start
Online sports betting in Canada is a multi-million dollar industry. The bookmakers employ experts to set the odds and the spread. Finding a true opportunity can take time and patience. That being said, when you find the best odds, it is important to understand the full implications of the bet, the amount that can be won and the amount that can be lost. With in-play wagering, it is always better to pull out with a small profit rather than risk a higher profit or a sign incant loss.
Spread betting is often considered the most intense form of wagering, mainly because of the risk involved. Whenever the risk is increased, the potential for profit is never far behind. If you are thinking of trying your luck, a good strategy is to mentally prepare yourself beforehand. Remain focused, alert, zoned in and avoid potential distractions. You should always prepare for the worst-case scenario, even if you are confident in your skills, as anything can happen – and that’s all part of the thrill.