When I joined Betfair as one of their first customers back in June 2000 I saw lots of opportunity. But for people used to a traditional sportsbook, some of these opportunities may not be immediately apparent.
Here are some of the clever things that can be done using software on the Exchange.
Outright Backing or Laying (with a twist)
When you back something you are betting on it to win, lay something and you are doing the opposite, betting on it to lose. Using the Exchange you can decide the price at which you want to do either, you are under no obligation to take what is on offer. It's really your question as to what price you want. When you know what the 'value price' is, you simply offer that bet to the Exchange and wait for it to be taken. If nobody takes your bet it simply lapses when the event you are betting on starts. It's that simple.
Backing or laying more than one selection
Backing or laying more than one selection is obviously going to get you a higher success rate chance of profiting than just backing on laying one selection in a market. The most common method of doing this is 'dutching'. With Bet Angel's advanced dutching you turn backing on its head. You choose to back as few or as many selection as you wish for a designated profit target and Bet Angel will tell you how much your stake will be. Picking one winner from 20 selections is tough, five from 20 much less so.
On the Exchange there are plenty of sports that are turned in-play. This offers a much wider range of opportunities to seek. In the 'old world' backing a horse just before the off only to find it misses its kick, would have been a disaster. Now you can correct your position or take a new one immediately the event gets under way by taking advantage of in-play betting. Lots of people now back or lay before an event with the intention of keeping the bet through to the in-play period and cashing out in-play. Bet Angel contains a range of sports specific in-play trading tools to help you do this.
Backing and laying the same selection - 'Trading'
Why would we want to back and lay the same selection? The critical factor to understand here is that if you lay at a lower price than you back a selection at you will make money. This is because you are laying liability at a better price than you are backing it, thus netting the difference between the two. People call this activity 'trading' because it's essentially similar to spread betting on financial markets.
Trading is still gambling, but it is gambling on the movement of odds rather than whether something is going to win or not. The big advantage with trading is that you can profit without specific knowledge of the underlying sport, before the event has started and regardless of who actually wins the event you are betting on. That's a revelation to a many traditional sportsbook punters.
Automating your betting or trading
Creating a viable system is now within the reach of many people even if you don't have the time or money to try it. Using software like Bet Angel you can link and bet through a spreadsheet or use its dedicated automation tool. Doing this allows you to explore many betting or trading strategies and techniques on the exchange. Better still, using practice mode you can try any or all of the tools and tactics at no financial risk.
If you want to explore any or all of these strategies download a free trial of Bet Angel. This video explains a bit more about the software and how it interacts with Betfair.
For a selection of Betting Apps for Betfair.com please see the Betfair App Directory.