Betting Exchanges Explained.
What is a betting exchange? A betting exchange is a marketplace for customers to bet between each other on the outcome of particular events. This differs from a traditional bookmaker because an exchange also gives you the ability to be the bookmaker yourself and take bets from other exchange users. Standard bookmakers generate profit by offering odds that are in their favour. Betting exchanges explained in terms of how they generate revenue is they charge a commission on any winnings a player receives.
In layman terms:
On an exchange you're not betting against a bookmaker, you're betting against other customers - so when you place lay bets, what you're actually doing is saying "hey, I offer you on odds United to win". Which then means you've effectively become the bookmaker yourself, because then if United do win, then you pay out at odds you offered.
That's why when looking for odds we try to find them as close to each other on the back and lay bets. Because on the back bet you're betting against the bookmaker and the lay bets you're in effect, the bookmaker yourself. So they cancel each other out and no money is won or lost if the odds are the same.
Different Betting Exchanges
Every time you place a bet with a bookmaker you will be laying the bet on a betting exchange.
The two key factors for a betting exchange from our perspective:
- The range of betting markets (i.e. ability to lay the bookmaker bet)
- The commission charged (% of your winning bet)
Note each exchange offers a welcome bonus. We do not actively promote these because they are relatively small compared to the long list of bookmakers, but it is still worth using them!
Below is a summary table with links to sign up to each bookmaker:
When to sign up to each Exchange?
We recommend signing up to Betfair as your primary exchange, then signing up to the additional exchanges as you find bets in the OddsMatcher that are using an alternative exchange.
ps. Please use the Exchange links in the above table when signing up - find out why here.