A typical example of odds shown on bet365
When getting to grips with the foundations of sports betting, arguably the thing that confuses people most is the odds. For those looking for a simple betting odds explained guide, look no further, as we break down how odds work and how you can utilise them when betting on sports.
Breaking it down to its most basic level, betting odds are simply a numerical representation of the chance of a certain outcome happening.
Chance (or probability) can be written as a percentage, or in our case, as decimal or fractional odds.
As an example in this betting odds guide, if you were to take a 6 sided dice, the probability of you rolling a 3 would be 1 in 6 – this effectively means on average, you’d have to roll the dice 6 times to get your desired number (in this case, a 3).
As a percentage, this would give us a 16.67% chance of rolling the 3.
How is this calculated? Simple – you take 100%, which would theoretically be the probability of any number on the dice landing and dividing it by 6 (the number of possible outcomes).Decimal Odds Guide
Outside of the UK and US, it has become common practice by online bookmakers to display odds in a decimal format. This is typically the most easy to understand method and makes finding the highest odds price on a comparison site very simple – in essence, a larger number equals larger returns.
Essentially the percentages we mentioned in the previous paragraph of this betting odds guide would be converted into a number as per this instance below.
Continuing with the dice example, we’ve established that the probability of rolling a 3, or indeed any number on the face of a dice is 16.67%. To find out what this would be in decimal odds, you can use the following formula:
Applying this to a real life betting scenario, should Real Madrid have a 20% chance of winning this season’s Champions League, their decimal odds would equate to 5.0 (100%÷20%).
From a betting point of view, should you think Madrid’s chances of winning the Champions League are greater than 20%, then odds of 5.0 would be seen as favourable.Fractional Odds Guide
Whenever you see two numbers that are separated by a slash, these are known as fractional odds. There are several ways of explaining how these work, but the simplest would be to see the number on the left as how much you could win and the number on the right as how much you’d need to stake.
As an example, if Manchester United were a price of ‘5/2’ to beat Chelsea on any given weekend, then someone staking £2 would in theory, win £5. Using the odds provided, you can calculate how much you stand to win should you bet on Manchester United in relation to your stake using the following formula.
(Your stake (i.e. £10) ÷ the number on the right) X the number on the left = your returns
In the case of the Manchester United bet of 5/2, your returns from a £10 stake would be as follows:
Whilst all bookies will usually calculate your returns for you, being able to spot which fractional odds are higher is of paramount importance when trying to get the best price on odds comparison sites. If you were to see a rival bookmaker is offering odds of Manchester United to win at 9/4, you could use the same formula to calculate which price would garner the highest returns. We already know a £10 stake would result in £25 winnings at 5/2, but how much could we win should we take the rival bookmaker’s odds at 9/4?
Once you gain experience working with fractional odds, it will become second nature deciphering which set of odds will garner the highest returns. Many experienced bettors instantly know the difference between 5/2, 9/4 or indeed 3/1 for example. It is for this reason, over many decades that punters in the UK still prefer fractional odds over decimal odds.
By Manchester United being priced at 5/2 to beat Chelsea, the bookmaker is essentially saying that should these two teams play each other 7 times (5+2), that Manchester United should be expected to win 2 times and not win (draw or lose) 5 times.
It’s from this basis that your winnings are calculated from fractional odds.American Odds
For foreign eyes, US odds are perhaps the most difficult to understand. US odds, in essence, work by showing you how much you’d need to stake to win $100 OR how much money you will make if you stake $100. A negative number with a minus sign next to it would indicate how much you’d need to stake for $100 in winnings whilst a positive number with a plus sign would indicate how much a $100 stake would get you.
As an example in this odds guide, if an NBA basketball team were priced at -250 to win a particular match, then this means you would have to stake $250 in order to win $100.
However, if their opposition were priced at +250, this would mean a $100 stake would net you $250.
In both instances, this can easily be converted into decimal odds using the following formula:
Positive odds: (250/100) + 1 = 3.50
Negative odds: (100/250) + 1 = 1.4Conclusion
For all intents and purposes, beginners should stick to decimal odds when trying to find their way in the complicated world of online sports betting. As already stated in this sports betting odds explained guide, with many if not all bookmakers offering decimal odds on their sites as standard, there isn’t a drastic need for the use of fractional odds. The only exception would perhaps be on UK and Irish horse racing – a segment of sports betting in which traditional fractional odds has stood the test of time.
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Plus, be the first to see our match previews, competitions, offers and more.PART ONE: BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO SPORTS BETTING
At 198odds, we’re crazy about football. We love watching the game, predicting what’s going to happen, analysing the outcomes - and we must confess, we love a cheeky bet. If this sounds like you - and you’re too shy to talk about the betting part of football, well, you’ve come to the right place.
Welcome to our 198odds Betting Guide series. This is Part One where we talk about the whole concept of sports betting - a brief overview. Over the next few articles, we’ll be explaining everything you need to know to get started. Our team have years of experience in the field, over this informative series, they’ve offered their knowledge and tips to help you understand the lay of the land. So, let’s get started.
Don’t be intimidated. Sports betting simple means predicting an outcome of a sporting event and placing a wager on that outcome. There’s a chance that what you predict will happen (winning bet) or won’t (losing bet).
Sports betting is a general term, this series will focus on football only. But many similarities apply across all types of sports.
In sports betting, first you choose a match, then you pick a market, decide on what you think will happen, find a selected bookmaker, choose a price/odd (we will get into odds comparisons later in the series), and place a wager on that outcome. Then you watch, and wait and see if you’ve predicted correctly.
As a beginner - we’d never recommend anyone to start out betting with large sums of money. Of course, betting gets a bad wrap, but let’s understand how it works. Whether it’s just for fun or a casual bet here and there, you should know your limits. If you ever feel out of control or think you have a problem - you should seek help, read more here: http://www.gambleaware.co.uk/
A bookmaker operates ‘the book’ or ‘markets’. They create odds or prices and take bets at those agreed upon odds/prices. There are many bookmakers out there - there are some things to look out for when you are choosing a bookmaker - we get into that later on, too.
Here’s some jargon to help you out: ‘events’ are the games or matches - also known in football as ‘fixtures’. Markets refer to the various betting options or categories you can place a bet on. For example, the event could be Manchester United vs Arsenal. The betting markets would include 1x2, Double Chance, Correct Score, Asian Handicap, Over/Unders and the list can go on and on. It’s interesting because there are literally thousands of markets you can choose from. We suggest you pick one that you understand, first.
When it comes to ‘the odds’ - it’s all about probability. Betting odds expresses the likelihood of the event happening. For eg. if you flip a coin, the odds are 50% of it landing on heads and 50% chance of it landing on tails. It’s all about chance.
There are many ways to display the odds - two main ways are fractional (mostly used in the UK) and decimal (the more popular option worldwide because they are easier to understand).
Fractional odds = Profit. So let’s say you see 10/1, this means you’ll get $10 for every $1 you stake. And you get your stake back.
Decimal odds = Return. So let’s say you see 1.29, this means you’ll get $1.29 for every $1 you put down, it includes your stake.
For decimal odds, the bigger the number, the bigger return. So it’s easier to understand which price is better. To figure out how much return you’ll get, just multiply the odd x your stake.
Decimal Odds Example:
Fractional Odds Example:
These are just as it says - fractions. Divide the top number by the bottom number and multiply that by your stake.
So that’s the basics - football betting 101.
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Understanding betting odds can be the simplest or most confusing thing in the world. It’s like anything really, if you work with something for long enough, it simply becomes second nature.
What’s important to remember is that whilst there may be more than one format to present odds, the fact of the matter is that all have the same meaning, just laid out differently. Throughout this article we will be looking at trying to explain the different ways in which odds are shown and also how to understand each type.Fractional Odds
Fractional odds are probably the most popular kind and are used throughout the majority of European bookmakers. These types of odds have been around since betting began and are still as common today as they were then.
The odds will basically be shown as a fraction, such as 2/1. You then need to remember two important pieces of information with a fractions bet.
The right hand left hand column is the amount you wager and the left hand column is the amount that will be return. So, if the odds were set out at 2/1 (often spoken as two to one) then you would win two units for every one unit you staked. Similarly, if you placed 10 units on a 2/1 bet you would win 20 units as the ratio to amount staked versus amount won would remain the same.
As a final note on fractional bets, we want to make you aware that the amount won does not include your stake back. For example, let’s say we placed a 10 unit stake at odds of 5/1 and our bet won. This means we would receive 50 units for our successful bet plus the original 10 that we wagered, meaning 60 units would be paid back into our betting account.Decimal Odds
The decimal bet is becoming an increasingly popular betting format, especially online. A bet type that was once popular in US markets has a much larger global appeal and is arguably easier to understand than fractional.
A decimal bet might look like something as simple as ‘3.00’. The number is basically an indication of how many units you will win if you place just one unit on that result. The key difference between this and fractional bets is that decimals include the amount you staked back.
Working out the amount you would win is simple with decimals as you just times the odds by your stake. Let’s say you wanted to bet 7.50 units at odds of 3.00. To work out our returns you simply times 7.5 by 3.00 which equals 22.50. Remember though, this number includes our stake back, so to gain our true profit we would need to deduct our stake from our winnings(22.50 winnings- 7.50 sake) to get our profit of 15.00 units from this bet.
Bear in mind that most bookmakers will use decimals to two decimal places. This is because it gives much more accurate odds reading for both you and them. After all, that second decimal place can be the difference between a sizable amount of money.American Odds
The least common of three comes in the form of American odds. Obviously, this is much more common in the US than in the UK or Europe, but some of the larger bookmakers do operate what’s called a Money Line bet, which is essentially the same thing.
The principal behind it is that the number on show will tell you how much you are going to win for every 100 units staked. But, there is a twist! American odds can come in two forms; one as a positive number or two, as a negative number.
The positive number shows you how much you will win for every 100 units staked. The negative on the other hand, shows you how much you need to wager in win 100 units. For those of you familiar with fractional and decimal odds, think of the number 100 being even money with positive numbers being above that and negative being odds on.
There isn’t actually a need to learn all three betting types as most bookmakers will offer you the option to flick between whichever suits you best. But we do think that understanding each is very important, even if you use one for the majority of your bets.
A good tip we always use to roughly gauge the odds if they are in a format aren’t necessarily familiar with is knowing what the even money digits look like. So, fractional bets will be 1/1 or even money, decimals will be 2.00 and American will be (-)100. From there we can at least work out (roughly) what they odds mean for each type. If in doubt, there are a ton of betting converters out there that you can insert your bet to and be told the exact price in the format you understand the most.
There are three types of odds formats used throughout the world, and it really just comes down to three separate ways of displaying the same information.
Fractional odds are considered the benchmark for UK-based bookmakers and the horse racing industry worldwide.
Represented as a fraction such as 5/1, the left side of the fraction represents the number of bets you will receive (for a win), while the right side of the fraction represents the number of bets you need to make.
For example, an even-money bet (bet £1 to win £2, a £1 profit) is reflected as 1/1 in fractional odds.
A bet where you would receive ten times your original stake is referred to as 10/1 odds. It’s important to be able to tell the differences between fractions as a 13/5 bet pays out less than 11/4, despite 11/4 “looking” like a worse bet thanks to the smaller numbers. Fractional odds are the preference for straightforward bets on straightforward betting sports.
Example: When fractional odds include a number larger than one on the right side, many betters have difficulty understanding the exact bottom-line payout on their bet. For example, how much would you make on a £1 bet at 13/5?
You can figure this out in two ways. While each way is essentially the same thing, some people will find one way easier than the other.
The first way has you dividing the left number by the right number (13/5=2.6). If you remember your 6 th year math lessons you’ll know that anything you do to one half a fraction, you must do to the other, this gives you a new fraction of 2.6/1. Now it’s obvious, that on your bet of £1 you’ll make a profit of £2.60.
The second way is to divide your actual bet amount £1 by the right side of the fraction. As mentioned earlier the right side represents the number of bets you need to make to win the amount on the left side. If your total wager is £1, and that is made up of 5 parts then each part is worth £0.20. Simply multiply that amount by the left side of the fraction and you have your result: 13*£0.20 = £2.60.
The majority of people dislike calculating with fractions in their head, or at all. This common dislike for fractions has seen decimal odds become the preferred betting metric for many of the world’s largest markets, especially the betting exchanges.
Decimal odds are arguably the easiest way to express wagers. An even-money bet in decimals is reflected as odds of 2.0.
It can be a little confusing if you’re used to fractional odds as 2/1 isn’t the same as 2.0- it’s actually 3.0. In decimals odds you include the stake in the total. A 10/1 wager is reflected in decimals as odds of 11.0.
Example: If you’re looking at placing a £1 bet at 6.0 odds, you stand to make a £5 return on your bet. The odds are simple, just multiply your bet by the odds provided, and that’s the total amount you’ll get back from the bookmaker. Subtract your original bet from the total to discern your total profit from the bet.
While they may be a little unconventional-looking if you aren’t used to them, you can rest assured that most Americans feels the same way about fractions and (especially) decimals.
American wagering is based around money-lines and point spreads and they tend to use a +/- system. In American odds, an even-money bet is expressed as +100. If you are taking odds of 10/1 or 11.0, they are reflected in American odds as +1000.
The first thing to understand is that the + or – is not a mathematical symbol. This number simply represents whether you will earn more or less than the total amount of your bet. The numbers themselves are all based on £100.
Example: At odds of +150, you win £150 for betting £100, a £50 profit. This means if you bet just £1 you’ll get back £1.5.
Since it’s based on £100 the best way to calculate positive odds are to think of the odds as percentages. If the odds are +140, that’s 140% of your bet. £1 * 140% = £1.40. Subtract your original stake of £1 and you’re left with £0.40 profit.
If the odds are negative you’re seeing how much you would need to bet to make £100. So at odds of -250 you would need to bet £250 to make £100.
You can use a similar formula for negative odds as you did for positive odds, only instead of multiplying your bet by the odds percentage, you need to divide it. Also, this calculation only gives us the profit, meaning you no longer need to subtract your original stake.
At the odds of -250 (the American representation of 2/5) you would find your profit with the calculation £1/250%=£0.40.
There you have all of the commonly used methods of displaying betting odds. Without understanding what the odds actually mean, it’s impossible to understand if you’re getting good value on your wager or not.
Now that you understand the types of odds used across the various betting markets, you can explore the types of betting markets available. For the beginner punter, we recommend you start by reading about how spread betting works.
Learn the basics of sports betting. We explain you how to read betting odds and how to calculate your potential winnings.
When you place some bets on any online bookmaker’s site, you must understand how sports betting odds work. Odds are pretty important while betting. They represent the likelihood that an event will occur. The more unlikely it is, the higher the odds are. By multiplying his stake by the odds, a punter will obtain his potential winnings. Here, we will give you an overview of the main three odds formats: fractional odds, decimal odds and moneyline odds.
In UK, the traditional format of display is by fractions. The odds are displayed as 2/1, 6/4, etc. Let's see how to read fractional odds. The first number (numerator) shows the potencial winnings if you stake the second number (denominator).
For example, with odds 4/5, you can win £ or € 4, if you stake £ or € 5. If odds are 5/1, it means that you can win £ or €5 per each £ or €1 staked. Now, if you invested £20 as your wager and odds are 4/5, what is your potential return? You will win ( £ 20*4)/5 = £16 and get your £ 20 stake back. Your total return is £36.
Remember something important. When the denominator (stake) is higher than the numerator (potential winnings), it means that the team or player is favourite. It happens the same thing with decimal odds less than 2 or negative numbers in american odds formats.
If you need to convert fractional odds into decimals, you can do it easily. A 4/5 fractional odd is (4/5 + 1) = 1.8 in decimals.
Decimal format = Fractional format + 1
Decimal odds formats (1.2, 2.75, etc.) are the simplest way to understand odds and calculate potential winnings. That's the reason why this method of display has gained popularity in recent times. The punter has to simply multiply the stake amount of his bet with the decimal number to calculate the amount of winnings.
If you stake £ 10 at 2.3, your return is £ 10*2.3 = £23. Easy. Note that the total return includes your initial stake. If you want to calculate your net profit, you must remove the stake. In our example: £23 - 10 = £13.
Otherwise, you can use the following method. The result is exactly the same. £10 * (2.3 - 1) = £13
American format (or Moneyline odds)
This kind is preferred by online bookmakers in the United States. The moneyline odds format is different for favourites (negative odds value) and underdogs (positive odds value) . Even odds are displayed as +/-100.
If the quoted figure is positive (+300, +175, etc.), it shows how much you gain on a $100 investment. A negative figure (-150, -225, etc.) indicates how much one should wager to gain $100.
For example, on a baseball game, if the bets are: Team A: -190 and Team B: +150. That means you bet $190 on Team A to win $100, and $100 on Team B to win $150.
If you need to convert a moneyline odd into decimals, you can also do it but the formula is different for positive and negative odds values.
For positive values: Decimal format = (Moneyline Odds + 100) / 100
For negative values: Decimal format = (Moneyline Odds + 100) / Moneyline Odds
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