Live betting is an exceptionally popular category of betting. Almost all betting sites allow you to live bet, and if you’re smart, you can win a lot of money on live betting. In fact, this is the type of betting where the player has the biggest edge!
Here’s a full guide to live play. We will look into everything you need to know, how you can get an edge when you should place your bets, and which bookmakers you can use for live betting.
Facts about live betting
Live betting happens when the game/match/event has already started. In other words, you will be betting while watching as the action is unfolding. This is in contrast to regular pre-match betting where you bet before it starts.
While the margin of the bookmaker is higher in live betting, it is actually easier for the player to get an edge, since the odds will be less precise.
During live betting, there are a lot of changes and a lot of adjustments. The odds can vary massively.
For example, if an underdog scores a surprise goal early, it will flip the odds completely around.
Various things might happen on the field that bettors are able to spot before the bookmakers. Oftentimes, bookmakers have mathematical approaches, and their odds are based on models and systems. If you can spot something simply from watching, you will have an edge. It sometimes happens that one team is playing dominantly, but it is not immediately reflected in the statistics.
The live betting market is absolutely huge, and it is popular among millions of bettors. While most are still losing, it can be a very lucrative market for strategical and attentive bettors who are able to spot edges and quickly react to changing odds.
Best betting sites for live betting
As mentioned in the introduction, almost all bookmakers and exchanges offer live betting on events that are currently taking place. But there is a big difference in quality between them. Ideally, you want to bet with a site that has high odds, high limits and where it’s easy to place bets in a hurry.
Sportmarket is a major bet broker. The Sportmarket Pro platform gives you access to several of the best bookmakers and exchanges from one single account.
That ensures you will always get the top odds on the market, pre-match as well as live. With no personal limits and great service, Sportmarket is the ideal place to bet for the serious sharp.
AsianOdds is another broker. It works the same way as Sportmarket, and it gives you access to the same bookmakers and exchanges, basically.
Live betting works really well with Asianodds – both odds and limits are high. We do prefer Sportmarket’s platform to the AsianOdds platform, but it is ultimately a matter of taste, and we will urge you to look at the two brokers and pick the one you like the best.
If we look aside from brokers, it will usually be the exchanges that provide the highest odds in live betting.
Betfair is the top exchange on the market, and it has very active live markets. There is a commission rate on your winnings, but this will be quite low if you bet a lot, so we love live betting on Betfair. The site is very smooth and there are no personal limits. Overall, Betfair is a great site to use for live betting!
Among regular bookmakers, Bet365 leads the pack in live betting. The game selection is the best in the world – Bet365 provides live betting on a great variety of matches in many different sports. It also lets you live-stream many games for free.
The odds are decent, while not great. There is a significant margin, but due to the fact that the odds aren’t always precise, it is definitely possible to find edges and profit when live betting at Bet365.
Cloudbet is the go-to choice if you want to do anonymous live betting. It is a cryptocurrency bookmaker where you don’t need to share too much information about yourself.
The odds are actually better than Bet365’s, but not quite as high as the top Asian bookies and the main exchanges. Still, everything works, and if you want to do live betting with Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency, Cloudbet will be your best option on the market.
How you can get an edge
You get an edge in live betting the same way you get an edge in regular pre-match betting: By finding odds that are higher than the actual probability!
You have to look for value, and you have to pull the trigger when you see that value.
In live betting, you do have to move faster, and you do have to make choices based on what you are seeing here and now. Unlike pre-match betting, there will not be a huge deal of time for making an analysis. Live betting will be more about judging what you are currently seeing on the field and making quick estimations in your head.
The good thing is that the bookmakers don’t always react so fast to live events. The odds are often priced based on mathematical models and projections. Of course, these odds do get constantly adjusted, but in many matches, it is an automatic affair. So if you are actually watching games, you might be able to react faster, and you might see things that betting models are not capable of taking into account.
Beyond all, live betting is still about finding value – the differences are that you have to act faster and make quick calculations in your head, all while watching the action unfold!
Timing the market
It is important to your bets well when you are live betting. You are betting against the bookmakers, but also against the entire market that includes other competent live bettors.
If a player goes down to injury or gets sent off the field, you have to make a decision quickly. Are you sure that it will affect the team? Or is it worth it to wait a few minutes and see what effects the absence will have?
Likewise, how do teams respond to a goal in their favor? Will the playing style change, and how does the other team adjust when it allows a goal?
You have to time your bets correctly. And this is more of an art form than a science. It will all depend on what you are seeing on the field. A lot of bettors will lose when they get started with live betting since it requires a lot of experience to be good at it – and get a feel for it.
Betting or trading?
When we are talking about live-action, there are two ways to go about it: Betting and trading.
Betting is when you spot an edge, place a wager, and leave it until the game is over. It is quite simple, but very efficient as well. This is usually done with bookmakers.
Trading is when you trade odds. You will place a bet, then sell your position again later – and it will go back and forth like that. It is more complicated, but there is huge potential here as well. It is typically done at the betting exchanges.
We advise you to start with simple live betting and perhaps move on to trading later. You can get a small feel for trading as you progress. Sometimes, you might have live bets that you want to cash out while the game is still going on, and this is basically a form of trading. When this starts happening a lot, you will gradually get a feel for trading, and you might be able to focus more on it as you obtain experience.
Handling your bankroll
Bankroll management is always important when you bet. But it has to be done slightly differently when live betting or trading.
If you are live betting, your overall amount of bets will probably be lower than if you are betting pre-match. This is due to the simple reason that if you are focusing on live betting, you must actually watch the games, and it is somewhat limited how many games you can watch in a day.
So in order to make up for the lower number of matches, you might have to bet higher amounts to still get a decent overall turnover.
If you bet 1-2% pre-match, you might want to turn that up to 2-4% when live betting.
If you are trading, and you know that you will only have your current position for a while, you might even want to place a higher percentage than that.
At the same time, you also need to have your bookmaker accounts well funded so you are always ready to pound on value.
Live betting is a great opportunity to make money – if you know what you are doing!
It does require a naturally analytical mind and an ability to make quick judgments and calculations in your head if you want to succeed in live betting. But it is definitely worth trying, and there is no doubt that live betting makes it much more fun to watch sports.