What Is A Betting Exchange ?

A Betting Exchange allows punters to bet against each other. So instead of placing a bet with a traditional bookmaker you are placing the bet against another person who has the opposite opinion as yourself.

You can do two things at a Betting Exchange, the first one is to place a normal “back” bet like you would at a bookmaker where you bet on something that WILL happen, on the other hand you can bet on something NOT happening. This is called a “Lay” bet. Being able to place a “Lay” bet (Betting on something not happening) is what makes it possible to matched bet.

In recent years there has been an astronomical rise in the number of people using betting exchanges because you are betting against other people and hence the odds tend to be better than what bookmakers offer.

What Does a Betting Exchange Look Like ?

Tottenham v Liverpool Market at Betfair Exchange

Tottenham v Liverpool Market at Smarkets

At Betfair, the Blue column shows you the best available back odds. Just like placing a bet at a bookmaker, placing a back bet on Tottenham would be betting on them to win.

The Pink column shows you the best available lay odds. This is simply where you play the role of bookmaker. Placing a lay bet against Tottenham would be betting that they won’t win.

So, there are two parts to every matched bet on a betting exchange. You have one person betting that Tottenham WILL win (Back Bet) and another person betting that they WON’T win (Lay Bet).

If you placed £10.00 on Tottenham at back odds of 3.35, someone else would be risking £23.50 to win your £10.00 stake.

At Smarkets, the Green column shows you the best available back odds. Just like placing a bet at a bookmaker, placing a back bet on Tottenham would be betting on them to win.

The Blue column shows you the best available lay odds. This is simply where you play the role of bookmaker. Placing a lay bet against Tottenham would be betting that they won’t win.

So, there are two parts to every matched bet on a betting exchange. You have one person betting that Tottenham WILL win (Back Bet) and another person betting that they WON’T win (Lay Bet).

If you placed £10.00 on Tottenham at back odds of 3.35, someone else would be risking £23.50 to win your £10.00 stake.

How Do I Lay a Bet ?

As you can see, if your £10 lay bet of Brocture Red wins this race, your liability is £19.60. You will also lose your £10 lay stake, so the total payout is £29.60.

Because you’re acting the role of bookmaker, if any of the other runners win the race your winnings will be £10, the equivalent of your original stake. The shorter the odds of the selection you lay, the smaller your liability.

The betting exchange helpfully outlines all the potential results when you’re in the process of placing your bet. You can find these figures underneath each selection in a market, here on the left-hand side of the page.

As you can see, if your £10 lay bet of Brocture Red wins this race, your liability is £19.60. You will also lose your £10 lay stake, so the total payout is £29.60.

Because you’re acting the role of bookmaker, if any of the other runners win the race your winnings will be £10, the equivalent of your original stake. The shorter the odds of the selection you lay, the smaller your liability.

The betting exchange helpfully outlines all the potential results when you’re in the process of placing your bet. You can find these figures underneath each selection in a market, here on the left-hand side of the page.

Which Is The Best Betting Exchange ?

There are four main Betting Exchanges that can be used for matched betting and they are all listed below. One thing you should be aware of is that Betting Exchanges charge a commission on winning bets between 0% – 5%. I have listed the commission for each exchange below. Betfair & Smarkets are the two better exchanges in my opinion and that is where most matched bettors “Lay” there bets.

5% Commission

2% Commission

2% Commission

2% Commission

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