The Complete Beginners Guide to Sports Betting 2023
Our beginners’ guide to sports betting is all about teaching you the basics – understanding betting odds, bankroll management and other important tips for newbies. If that’s what you’re after, you’re in the right place!
Our expert team has years of experience playing at and reviewing thousands of betting sites. In this article, we’ll do our best to explain everything in a clean, simple way so that you can start enjoying the many exciting betting sites available in India.
Keep reading our beginners’ guide to sports betting below to learn more.
The Mechanics of Sports Betting – How Betting Works
If you know how to place a sports bet, you can skip this section. However, if you want a complete beginners’ guide to sports betting, this is what you need to know.
Sports betting allows you to place wagers on real life sporting events. If you correctly predict the outcome, you’ll win money. For example, if you think India will win the next Cricket World Cup you can put money on it. A bookmaker might offer you odds of 9.00 – this means if you bet ₹1000 and India win, your bet will pay out ₹9000.
Sports betting itself is nothing new, but in recent years there’s been a big swing towards online sports betting. Online bookmakers work in the same way as traditional, brick-and-mortar venues, with one major difference – you can place all your bets online from your computer or mobile. This has revolutionised the industry, offering a bunch of new markets and ways to bet.
What You Can Bet On
If a sport exists, you can be sure there’s an online betting site that will allow you to bet on it. All the major sports like football, cricket, tennis, basketball and more are covered, both for the major leagues and smaller, local ones.
There are too many different types of bets to mention here, but some of the major categories include:
- Betting on a team or player to win a competition/league
- Betting on a team or player to win a match
- Betting on a team to score a certain amount of points
- Betting on a particular player to score a goal
- Betting on the specific score of a match
Tonnes more betting options are available, but this should give you an idea of how sports betting works. Read on to find out more about placing a sports bet.
How to Bet on Sports
Brand new sports bettors are sometimes intimidated by the thought of placing a real money bet, as they’re worried about making a mistake. But it’s a very simple process. Once you’ve placed a few bets, it becomes second nature.
For those of you who are just getting started with sports betting, here’s a quick breakdown of how to place a bet on sports:
- Choose a betting site: First thing’s first – you need to find a sports betting site to use. If you’re not sure where to start, check out our detailed reviews for some suggestions. We’ll show you what a site is good at and what it’s not so you can choose which is best for you.
- Sign up: You can’t just jump into sports betting without signing up, unfortunately. But signing up doesn’t take long. Look for a ‘Register’ button (or similar), then fill out a few simple details such as your name, email address and so on.
- Locate the market: When you place your first bet, this will probably be the confusing bit. Do it step-by-step. Look at the sports and find the one you want. Then click on the specific competition or league. Then find the team you want to bet on and take a look at the odds and markets that are available. The more you use the site, the easier this will become.
- Enter your stake: Once you’ve selected your bet, you’ll need to enter your stake. This means the amount you want to bet. At most sites, you’ll see a preview of how much you stand to win in the betslip before you place the bet – so it should all be pretty clear.
- Place your bet: Happy with the odds? Time to place your bet. Hit the button to confirm your bet, then wait for the results. This is where the fun starts, so sit back, relax and watch your bet come in.
Opening a Betting Account
Every sports betting site will ask you to create an account before you place any bets. It’s standard across India, Asia, and further afield. The main reason is to avoid fraud and ensure that all customers are of legal gambling age.
Sports betting sites want your custom, which is why they make signing up such an easy process. There will usually be a large, colourful ‘Sign Up’ button which you can’t miss. After that, it’s just a matter of filling out basic details. Usually, your account will be up and running almost immediately.
One thing to look out for is a welcome bonus. This is a special offer which you can only use one time – when you first join a sport betting site. You can find out more about what individual sites offer our bookmaker reviews. We also have a page dedicated to help you understand welcome bonuses and how to use them.
Depositing and Withdrawal
In order to make a deposit, you’ll have to insert your payment details to a sports betting site. For new players, this can be a scary moment. You might ask yourself questions like ‘Is this safe?’ or ‘Am I going to get scammed?’. As long as you use a legitimate sports betting site, you needn’t worry.
Lots of players in the modern era prefer using e-payments like Skrill or Neteller rather than their debit or credit card. Choose whichever payment suits you best. In most cases, deposits are instant. If you want to withdraw from your account, times vary – cryptocurrency withdrawals take minutes, whereas a cheque can take a month or longer to arrive.
Learning how to deposit and withdraw is easy enough but learning bankroll management is the most important thing if you are a beginner. This means knowing when to deposit, how much to bet, and discovering how to make your funds last.
Even if you’re only placing little bets, bankroll management is an important skill which you should practice from the beginning. Learn more about it with our guide to bankroll management.
Betting Odds – Reading The Lines At Sportsbooks
Have you ever taken a look at sports betting odds, become totally confused, and clicked away from the site altogether? Don’t worry – that’s exactly what a beginners’ guide to sports betting is for!
The first thing to note is that there are different types of odds. For many players this can be very annoying, as it would probably be much easier if there were just one type across the board. Nonetheless, there are many similarities between the different types of odds, and we also have a guide to help you get up to speed.
Top Tips for Beginners
No beginners’ guide to sports betting would be complete without some top betting tips for beginners. We know there’s a lot to take in when you first start, so we asked our whole team to give us a few straightforward tips – here they are:
To all you budding sports bettors, research is probably the least exciting thing imaginable. But that’s exactly what you need to do in order to stay ahead of the competition.
Odds change from day to day, hour to hour, even minute to minute. As punters place bets on a certain outcome, the odds can shorten – which means you’ll win less money. If you can predict this and get ahead of the masses, you’ll enjoy better odds and therefore more profit.
If you start betting on sports that you’ve only watched casually here and there, the bookies will have a major advantage over you. They run numbers and data and are making reasoned odds, while you’re just betting on emotion or a whim. It’s a recipe for disaster in the long term.
Do your research, look into the match history, player injuries, expert opinion and everything else you can get your hands on. Make this a habit with all of your sports betting and you’ll soon see the rewards.
Never Chase Losses
Most people have heard that you shouldn’t chase your losses, but some sports bettors do it without noticing.
Sometimes, it’s easy to spot. For example, you place a wager on Manchester United to beat Chelsea in the English Premier League (EPL). Chelsea win that match and so you check the other fixtures later in the day to see if there is a good opportunity to win your money back.
You back Man City as a favourite to beat Aston Villa, you make the bet a bit bigger than you usually would to cover the earlier bet you lost. The match ends as a draw and so your bet loses, and your losses are now even bigger.
Other times, it’s subtler. You may be on a losing streak, so you decide to bet a little more than usual to try to get back to where you were. However, this could quickly lead to much greater losses. It’s a risky strategy which you should avoid at all costs.
As you’re reading a beginners’ guide to sports betting, chances are that you don’t have too much experience betting online. This is a great opportunity for you to begin things the right way! Take note of how much you deposit and bet, and how often, to establish a pattern. If you notice you’re betting more than normal, it’s time to stop.
Many sites also have the option to add deposit limits. Set the amount you want to play with each week, and you won’t be able to go over that.
Keep It Simple
This tip is specifically for beginners who’ve just started betting on sports; keep it simple. There’s no need to learn all the crazy, niche markets available. At first, just stick to straightforward bets like which team will win the match, or who will score the first goal.
As you become more comfortable navigating betting sites and reading odds, you can begin to branch out into the more advanced betting markets.
Promotions, bonuses, special offers – whatever you call them, they can be useful. If you use bonuses smartly you can enjoy extra value on your bets. For example, you might sign up to a site and bag a free bet with zero risk.
However, it’s important to take careful note of the terms and conditions. The majority of offers come with something called wagering requirements. This means that you will need to risk the amount you were given as a bonus a specific number of times before you can withdraw any winnings. The higher the wagering requirements, the more you’ll need to gamble before you can cash out.