Sports betting is an increasingly popular way to make money online, and it’s a good idea to know a few things before you start. A basic understanding of odds, terms and strategies can help you win more often and avoid losing too much.
Expected value, also known as EV, is a concept that helps you win more consistently by making smart wagers. It’s a simple math equation that calculates the expected number of wins and losses for a certain bet.
In the case of a sports bet, EV is used to assess the odds on a team and calculate whether or not the expected number of wins is likely to exceed the expected number of losses. This allows you to avoid wagering on teams that are undervalued, which can increase your winnings over time.
Developing a sense of value is a skill that takes time and effort, so it’s important to practice before you can start relying on it. You can develop your EV by focusing on leagues you know well and using the following tips to improve your betting IQ:
When you first start making bets, it’s best to specialise in the league or tournament you’re interested in. This will allow you to gain a deeper understanding of the betting markets and increase your chances of finding value bets.
You can also use a specialist service that will provide you with expert advice on which strategies are likely to work for you. For example, Mercurius is an Italian fintech startup that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to help bettors find the most profitable sports betting opportunities.
Props, or proposition bets, are another valuable tool for sports bettors. They can be a great way to make more money by betting on events that haven’t yet happened.
Point spreads are one of the most common forms of bets in sports, but they can also be dangerous. Bettors have to be careful with a point spread because the line may vary depending on where you place your bets, which can cause you to lose if you’re not betting with the best possible line.
The most effective betting strategy for point spreads is to back the underdog. This can be difficult for new bettors to do, but it’s a great way to save money on your bets while increasing your chances of winning.
In a game of basketball, for example, there is a lot of value to be found by betting against teams that have been traditionally strong public favorites and have a large fan base. This is because oddsmakers adjust their lines to reflect the weight of public money, so they’re often quested at better odds or receive a larger point spread than is warranted.
You can also look for the Pythagorean win stat to assess a team’s strength in winning. This statistic takes into account the total number of points scored and compared to the number of points scored against a team, which can reveal the best-value bets.