Sports Betting Guide and Bookmakers

For as long as there have been sports, people have wagered on those sports. Despite its quasi-legal status in much of the world, sports betting is a multi-billion dollar a year industry. People from all around the world wager on sports such as football, soccer, baseball, hockey and many more.

Sportsbooks are growing in popularity amongst the recreational and professional bettor alike. Whether its just a friendly wager between friends or a serious investment made with a bookmaker, adding a little real money on the line can add excitement to watching live sporting events.

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The best sportsbooks listed here at BettingSites.org give bettors the opportunity to wager on a wide selection of sporting events and have multiple bets available for each event. They also offer innovative features like wagering on your mobile device and live in game betting.

If you’re like most sports fans, you probably have a few that you specialize in and place the majority of your bets on. In that case, it’s important to choose sites that offer a good selection of the sports you like to watch. You won’t have any problems finding places that offer wagering on football and basketball, but it still helps to find out which websites have the most options for those sports.

Every Sport is Covered

On each of the pages listed here, you will find the best sports betting sites for that sport. We have ranked these in order of security, the availability of bets for that sport and the generosity of the odds and lines offered on various events. If there’s a certain sport you plan on wagering on, check out any of the pages listed here.

Security is always the most important factor when ranking online sportsbook. They need to be trustworthy, established and have a solid reputation, which all the ones we list pass with flying colors.

We also rank them according to how well the site covers that sport. Some sites do much, much better than others at providing varied gambling options. Any site can say it offers bets on rugby matches, but that doesn’t mean anything if they only offer a couple a year on major events.

The generosity of the wagering odds and lines offered by each site is a commonly overlooked factor in choosing the top sportsbooks. Most of the major places are fairly competitive with their lines, but some of the smaller websites can hit you with some major juice. We also know of a few places that consistently beat the competition in certain sports.

Those three factors are the main things we look at when ranking the best of the best for each specific sport. So whether you are into football or something a little more off the beaten path, you’ll find what your looking for right here. Just visit any of the sport-specific pages to find which sites we recommend first.

You may also want to consider opening an account and keeping a little money at several different bookmakers. They are different than casinos or poker rooms in that it makes sense to keep more than one account funded at a time. Two separate sportsbooks may offer different odds on the same matchup and it makes sense to make a bet at the place with the best odds. Over the long run, this will improve your win rate.

A Few of the Best on the Internet

Sports betting sites can really vary by country and by sport. Below is a general guide to safe depositing as we hand picked each site based on ease of deposits, fast payouts, quality of support, and promotions.

1. Bovada.lv is highly recommended by most experts and cators specifically to players in the USA  – please read my detailed Bovada review for more information on specific types of sports betting, bonuses and promotions, and accepted deposit and payment methods.

2. Bet365.com is very established and widely trusted for bettors in most other countries outside the United States with great lines and easy deposits, top notch customer support, live streaming coverage of most major sporting events and live “in-play” betting along side the best VIP program in the businesss. Check out my Bet365 review for more information including how to deposit and bonuses.

General Information

Most professional sports organizations are opposed to gambling because it can lead bettors to attempt to “fix” matches. With millions of dollars riding on the outcome of any particular match, the temptation to fix those matches is a very real one. Over the years, professional sports have experienced dozens of scandals in which referees, players and coaches have been caught wagering on the outcomes of their own matches.

As much trouble as sports gamblers have caused over the years, the industry as a whole is good for sports. When people wager on their favorite teams and players, they stay interested in the matches and are more likely to purchase tickets or tune in on TV.

That alone is good for any industry but its absolutely vital for sports. Without interest in the game, there is no money.  This is why sportsbooks remain so popular around the world.

Making Bets on Sports Online

If you want to place a sports bet on an upcoming game, you first need to find a sportsbook to deposit at. Many people today prefer to do this on the internet instead of in person. In the United States, this is especially true because sports betting is illegal in most areas and local bookies can be pretty shady. Even in places where it’s legal, many people prefer staying at home because it’s so convenient and fast.

There are many to choose from but we did the homework for you since we’ve been around the block a few times and know which places are legitimate, and which aren’t.Once you find one you like, create an account. You’ll see big buttons all over the place asking you to sign up or “get started now.” Just click on one of those buttons and follow the instructions. It should only take a couple minutes to get your account set up.

After that, you will want to fund the account by making your first deposit. You can do that by signing in to your account and visiting the cashier section. From there, you can choose your deposit method and amount. Most people use credit cards to deposit but there are several other options as well.

Understanding Odds

Sportsbooks use odds to determine the payoffs you receive for placing bets on upcoming matches. Because some teams are more likely to win than others, the payoffs on certain teams are different than for others. A team that is highly likely to lose, for example, always offers higher payouts than for a team that is highly likely to win.

They offer different payouts like this because they want to attract an equal amount of betting action on both sides of every match. If it’s well known that one team is much better than another team, many people will naturally want to bet on the stronger team. By offering higher payouts for the underdogs they are able to attract an equal amount of action on both sides of the match.

In doing so, they minimize their own risk because they can just use all the losing bets to pay off all the winning bets. Otherwise, they would lose a lot of money if all the action goes on just one side of the match and that side wins. In that case, the sportsbook would have to pay off the winning bets with money from its own pockets.

Terms and Types of Sports Bets

The betting odds are listed in one of three formats:

  • US / Moneyline
  • Decimal
  • Fractional

Each type of odds format is explained in a basic introduction below.

U.S. Standard / Moneyline Odds

The U.S. or moneyline format is the most common in listing the odds. In the U.S. format, they use numbers such as +200 and -200 to represent how much money you must wager to win $100. For even money bets, the number +100 is used because you must wager $100 to win $100.

Let’s use an upcoming game as an example:

  • Team A -250
  • Team B +200

In this game, Team A the favorite to win the game. In order to make betting on Team A less attractive (and therefore get an equal amount of action on both teams), the bookmaker has listed Team A at -250. This means that for every $250 you bet, you will win $100. The Team B are listed at +200, which means that for every $100 you wager, you will win $200.

Decimal Odds

Decimal odds are the second-most common format for listing the odds. In the decimal odds system, the number 2.00 is used to represent even money bets. Any team with a number less than 2.00 is the favorite and any team with a number greater than 2.00 is considered the underdog.

The same game as above would look like this in decimal format:

  • Team A 1.40
  • Team B 3.00

An easy way to figure out how much you can win with decimal odds is to simply multiply your wager by the decimal odds. The resulting number will tell you how much money will be returned to you if successful.

For example, if you bet $250 on the Team A, you would take 250 times 1.40 which would equal $350. Your total profit would be $100 – the same as in our moneyline example above.

Fractional Odds

Fractional odds are mostly used for sports events in the UK. For even money bets, the number 1/1 is used. Here is the same game once again in fractional odds format:

  • Team A 2/5
  • Team B 2/1

How We Rate Online Sports Betting Sites

There are a few attributes to look for that will ensure you to always sign with the best one. The top sportsbooks will have many events to choose from and plenty of wagers to make on each event – along with a reputation for easy deposits and fast payouts to winners.

They will offer “live game” and mobile betting options, and also feature the best security systems, top rate customer service and safe deposit options. Valuable bonuses, specials, and VIP membership offerings will keep thier players satisfied. You will be able to choose on a variety of upcoming or live sporting events. You can place simple bets on who will win, or choose from more advanced options.