How bookmakers make money

October 2, 2023

Many people believe that playing at a bookmaker can bring a steady income, and this is true.

There are people for whom sports betting has become a permanent and well-paid job. Unfortunately, not every player manages to reach this level. If it were otherwise, the organizers of such entertainment would face inevitable financial ruin.

A modern bookmaker is a large team, which includes economists, lawyers, marketers, IT specialists, security, and customer support staff. The key role is assigned to analysts who form the playing line and determine the odds for bets.

The purpose of the enterprise is to earn profit, so all online bookmakers insure themselves in advance in case a player wins by setting a margin. What it is?

Margin is the percentage that the office charges from the client.

For example, the ideal odds for the victory of any of the equal opponents is 2.0. If the bookmaker offers these events at 1.9, the player’s winnings will be less by 0.1 of the bet amount than with the odds of 2.0.

This difference is the margin. Its size can range from 1 to 20% or more, depending on the specific market.

In live betting, the margin is usually higher, since it is more difficult for an analyst to correctly determine quotes in a time pressure and the probability of error increases.

The main source of income for bookmakers, of course, are gamblers who constantly remain in the red for a long time. Such bettors form a majority. Offices are trying to create conditions that attract new and retain old customers.

Their main tools are:

  • * welcome bonuses;
  • * promotions and promotional codes;
  • * loyalty programs;
  • * gifts for the holidays.

At the same time, some offices are closely monitoring the lucky players, trying to get rid of the most successful ones by cutting limits and refusing to accept bets. It looks ugly, but that’s the reality.

In addition to sports betting, such sites often have additional income from casinos or poker rooms, providing these services as related entertainment.

Alternative to a bookmaker

You can bet not only on betting sites.

There are also betting exchanges where players make deals with each other. The lack of margin allows you to get higher odds, the winner pays a commission to the platform. Thus, the platform makes a profit without any risk, unlike the bookmaker.

The betting scheme looks something like this:

1. The player indicates the event, the amount and his coefficient.
2. The other client either accepts the deal or offers his terms.
3. After calculating the bet, the loser pays the winner the due amount, from which he gives the commission to the exchange platform.

Each of the participants can close the deal ahead of schedule, taking part of the money back.

This option (CashOut) is offered today on the websites of almost every online bookmaker, but not everywhere.

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