The growth of the UK’s gambling industry has been pronounced during the last decade, with this charge having been led by online casino gameplay and sports betting. These two entities combined to account for more than 93% of the online gambling yield in the year ending March 2018, for example, while they’re also increasingly intertwined in the virtual world.
After all, sports bettors are thought to be 3.2-times more likely to play casino games than individuals who do not, while people who play games like roulette and blackjack online are 3.9-times more likely to wager on sporting events.
Not only does online wagering represent a significant growth industry in the modern age, but it also offers considerable advantages to sports bettors. We’ll appraise these below, while asking how online betting can help you to become more profitable.
Historically, wagering on your favourite sporting events was easier said than done. After all, this process involved scouring both local and national newspapers to review the latest form guides, before heading out to the local bookies and backing whatever odds you were presented with.
Online sports betting has dramatically improved this process, however, allowing you to enjoy the big match on Sunday afternoon and lay down your wagers without having to leave your armchair.
The physical process of betting online is also incredibly easy, as you can access your account from a computer, smartphone or tablet, deposit funds and place your desired wager in a matter of minutes.
Ultimately, this represents a huge boon for both casual and serious gamblers, who can now leverage online betting as a way of enhancing their enjoyment of big matches and sporting occasions.
The distinction between casual and serious sports bettors is an interesting one, but regardless of the motivation that encourages people to bet they’ll ultimately want to see a return on their original stake.
This is true even in instances where you wager to enhance their enjoyment of a sporting event, as nothing quite beats the feeling generated by a winning bet!
This is another argument for online sports betting, as the wide range of operators and bookmakers active on the web are immediately accessible to punters.
As a result, the Web can be used to compare real-time odds from several different operators, enabling them to achieve the best possible value for their hard-earned cash. Sites such as Oddschecker offer a relevant case in point, as this is an independent resource that directly contrasts prices on a wide range of markets and sporting events.
You can also register for multiple accounts to compare live odds directly, ensuring that you receive the best possible price at the precise time that you place the bet.
Over time, you’ll also come to learn that not all operators have been created equal, with some offering particularly competitive odds on specific markets and events.
As we’ve already said, online sports betting has enjoyed exponential growth during the last decade.
According to the Birmingham Mail, people wagered an estimated £626 every second through online sports betting in the year ending September 2017. Overall, virtual sports betting generated £19.7 billion in revenue during this period, with football wagers accounting for 40% of the total spend.
As the market has grown it has also become increasingly competitive, with a rising number of operators striving to secure a viable market share. In order to compete aggressively, these online operators have moved to incentivise potential customers and reward them for their loyalty, through a number of generous and lucrative measures.
Aside from welcome and sign-up bonuses (we’ll have a little more on these later), there’s usually a wide range of perks available to individuals when they register with a new operator.
These include loyalty and reward schemes, which typically offer points for every single, multiple and accumulator bet placed by punters.
These points can be subsequently redeemed for cash bonuses, rewards and even branded merchandise in some instances, while some programs feature different tiers that offer incrementally higher rewards as you progress.
If you’re a punter who likes to bet regularly and tends to focus on a number of core markets, online operators may also reward you with enhanced odds on selected events.
This will help you to get the most from your wagers, and optimise any profits that you make from each individual bet.
Another common perk revolves around the offer of cashback on losses and failed bets, which is usually made available to new registrants. In essence, this minimises your initial risk as a bettor, affording you a free wager that will be governed by the relevant terms and conditions.
There’s no doubt that bonus packages have become increasingly lucrative in recent times, as operators have looked to defend their market share and incentivise brand new customers to join them.
However, there are various types of welcome bonus available in the digital age, and determining which one is right for you can afford you a competitive advantage as an online bettor.
The majority of welcome bonuses usually take the form of deposit matches, which boost your initial deposit by anywhere between 100% and 400% within minimum and maximum thresholds. An operator may offer a 200% deposit match when you credit your account with between £10 and £50, for example, creating a bonus package with a maximum value of £150.
Increasingly, brands are supplementing this type of bonus with a specified number of free spins (available on either one or an entirely library of slot games). This makes sense in the modern age, as slots currently account for more than two-thirds of the online gaming GGY and are immensely popular amongst sports bettors and casino players alike.
These bonuses essentially translate into free money, which provide an initial boost to your account and starting bankroll.
You’ll just need to remember that these incentives are subject to quite stringent terms and conditions, including wagering requirements (which may require you to bet the value of the bonus several times before making a withdrawal) and a fixed date when the offer will expire.
You may also be presented with a free bet offer when registering for a brand new sports betting account, which is not dependent on you making an initial deposit.
However, this bonus will also be subject to wagering terms which may ultimately require you to match the operator’s investment, while the offer may have restrictions in terms of the precise markets in which it can be used.
Regardless, the sheer range of bonus options available to online sports bettors is incredible, and far beyond what can be found in high street bookmakers across the length and breadth of the UK.
On a final note, it’s important to remember that online sports betting offers you access to an ever-widening range of market and sporting events.
The same cannot be said of the offline market, which features relatively restricted markets and a lack of choice to punters.
This is embodied by the rise of the eSports betting market, which exists almost exclusively online and is poised for substantial growth between 2015 and 2020. This global market, which was worth a relatively paltry $315 million back in 2015, is expected to achieve a cumulative value of $23.5 billion by the year 2020.
In the UK, an estimated 6% of punters have placed eSports wagers online during the last year, while the progressive nature of the British market means that this number will increase noticeably in 2019.
Aside from this, the real-time nature of online sports betting also offers punters access to a huge range of live and in-play markets. These entities have taken sports betting by storm, particularly in specific disciplines such as football and cricket.
As if all of this was not enough, the range and size of bets available to punters is far greater online than on the high street. It’s also far easier to place handicap and winning margin wagers online, which can in turn help you to access far greater value and superior odds when backing odds-on favourites with a high probability of winning.
This increasingly diverse range of markets and wagers makes a compelling argument for online sports betting, particularly for punters who have specific expertise and aspire to achieve the best possible value for money.
The Bottom Line
With these points in mind; there’s little doubt that online sports betting offers tremendous opportunity and several advantages to punters who are serious about making money from their wagers.
Not only this, but a growing number of market-leading operators also offer sports betting and casino gameplay through a single account, and this is extremely appealing in an age where punters are increasingly likely to enjoy both pastimes simultaneously.
As a result, online bettors can place all of their wagers in the same place at the same time, enabling them to save considerable amounts of money and time in the process.