Sports betting in the United States has amassed a loyal following among gamblers. The number of bettors heading to sportsbooks and wagering online seems to be growing by the day.
As sports betting becomes legalized in more states, it will start to see an even more significant influx of novice sports bettors. These beginners will face an intimidating task of surviving the steep and unforgiving learning curve of sports betting.
In order to prevent you from making any bg mistakes, I’m going to give you some of the best sports betting advice for beginners.
Maybe you’ll be able to avoid the pitfalls that I see many beginners fall victim to.
Is Sports Betting Even a Good Fit?
Before you place your very first bet, you need to examine whether sports betting suits your personality and temperament. Don’t be discouraged by your lack of knowledge. Most people with the right mindset and dedication can become successful at anything.
You must be able to withstand the ebb and flow of sports betting mentally. If you get incredibly excited by a huge win and decide to go all in because you’re on a “hot streak,” you could quickly lose it all and go bankrupt.
Conversely, and more likely, the mental and financial strains of losing streaks can be quite unbearable. Many gamblers can’t take the emotional warfare of sports betting.
Assuming you can take the mental toll, you need to check your financial situation. If you are struggling to make ends meet or having difficult put food on the table, please wait until things turn for the better.
Sports betting is by no means a “get rich quick” scheme. Far more sports bettors finish the year in the red than the black.
If you are looking at sports betting as a way out of a bad financial situation, sports betting isn’t your answer. It’s likely to only add to your problems, especially when you don’t have any experience under your belt.
To become profitable as a sports bettor, you will have to win over 52% of your bets. Even if you win half of every bet you lay, you’re going to slowly lose money.
Suppose you’ve got the mental resolve to make it in sports betting, and you’ve got a decent bankroll established. This bankroll is money strictly set aside for gambling and should not be money needed for any expenses.
Then, you’ll be ready to move forward with your sports betting career. Keep in mind, you don’t need a huge bankroll to get started. But the smaller your bankroll, the smaller your bets will be until it grows.
Stick to What You Know
Most of those who venture into the world of sports betting have some base knowledge of sports at their disposal. I suggest you use that to your advantage.
Perhaps you are a lifelong fan of the Kansas City Chiefs. You may do best to stick to betting on NFL games. However, it would be best if you were careful to bet on games where you find the most value or find an edge over the sportsbook.
It would help if you didn’t necessarily bet on the Chiefs every week. While there’s no better time to be a fan of any Super Bowl champions, they aren’t likely to go 16-0 on the season. They’ll probably do considerably worse against the spread, but I wouldn’t bet against them.
Nor should you bet based on prejudices you have against other teams. Obviously, as a Chiefs fan, you’ll want the Raiders to lose every game. Don’t let that disdain for the teams on the field cloud your judgment and end up making bad bets.
By sticking to the sports you know, you’ll considerably shorten the learning curve, but never quit learning all you can about the sports you bet on.
Other significant benefits will also become apparent. You’re going to have more fun watching the games every week. Having skin in the game adds drama and excitement to games you may typically not care about one way or the other.
Beginners often try to dive in headfirst and spread money across leagues. They don’t take into consideration how little they may know about a team’s trends or injuries on one side of the bet.
This naivety can be disastrous to the novice sports bettor. The pool is vast in sports betting, but the water can be dangerously shallow. Only a small percentage of sports bettors will make a profit long term.
Bankroll Management for Sports Betting Beginners
Managing a bankroll is just as important for sports bettors as it is for professional poker players. Understanding what you have to bet with and how to protect and nurture that investment is fundamental to your success.
The industry standard on how much you should be betting is anywhere from 1% to 5%. Most of your bets will be close to 3% if you’re betting every day.
So, if you choose to bet on only your best pick for that day, you may gamble the entire 3%. If you want to spread that 3% over a few games, you’ll bet 1% per game.
Many gamblers become unsatisfied and grow too impatient to develop a bankroll properly. Granted, you may have to start extremely low on your bets. You need to understand that long term sports betting is an investment. You need to take this stance early on and treat it as such for as long as your sports betting.
Remember that the 3% bet will continue to be a larger and larger amount if done correctly. When your bankroll gets up to $33,000, you’ll be wagering almost $1,000 a day. That’s probably more than you make in a day presently.
Don’t let the potential riches make you greedy. It happens every single day, a novice sports bettor gets a few wins and decides to push all in because they see how much money there is to be made and want to change their situation overnight.
After all, they’ve already managed to win at a successful clip over several weeks or months. Why are they holding themselves back?
The arrogance of these beginners often betrays them, and they go broke. The best-case scenario is they have to build a bankroll from scratch and start all over.
I’ve seen it make a much more painful and saddening impact on some sports bettors’ lives.
Slow and steady is the name of the game. Check your ego, and you will be on your way to becoming a successful sports bettor.
Pick the Right Sportsbook
Picking the right sportsbook is immensely crucial in sports betting. Luckily, you can move your business around as you please.
Business is booming for the sportsbooks, and they all want a larger slice of the pie. You’ll see all sorts of bonuses offered in an effort to gain your business. They may seem like a scam to the beginner, but this is a genuine bid at gaining your business.
The most common bonus offer you’ll see is the deposit bonus. A deposit bonus is when the sportsbook will match your initial deposit up to a certain dollar amount.
Assume you deposit $200. The sportsbook may match the entire deposit amount or a large percentage of the $200. You need to read and understand the conditions of the bonus you accept. Usually, there will be a minimum wagering requirement before you may make a withdrawal.
If you fail to meet the obligation you have to the sportsbook, it may void the bonus and any winnings you have accrued up until then.
Don’t Fall in Love With a Single Sportsbook
You’re going to find the best odds by shopping around. Most profitable sports bettors will have accounts at several sportsbooks. This means they can easily find the best odds on the games they want to bet.
Additionally, you will often find the best payout by shopping around. Sportsbooks will often offer -105 where it’s competitor has -110. That means you only need to wager $105 to win $100, instead of the standard $110. That $5 can be rather significant to your bottom line.
It’s a business. It’s nothing personal, and the sportsbooks aren’t trying to keep you around because of your electric personality. They know that the sports betting world revolves around the all mighty dollar, and they want yours.
My best piece of advice comes down to this: Have a blast. Gambling is a form of entertainment first and foremost. If you’re not having fun, you probably aren’t winning either.
For those that want to make a profit in sports betting, the opportunity is there. However, I talk to a ton of people in airport lounges that are content enough just bragging about the $50 they won on the Dallas Mavericks win over the San Antonio Spurs.
Whether you want to become a successful sports bettor or are content just bragging to your buddies, my sports betting advice for beginners will help you start off on the right track.
Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. …