Betfair is a betting exchange where you can place bets against other bettors, instead of betting with a bookmaker.
Betfair is the world’s largest betting exchange with operations in many countries. When you bet with Betfair, you are betting against other punters and Betfair takes a commission on every winning bet placed.
Betfair offers three types of betting strategies:
A betting exchange, like Betfair, is a marketplace for you to bet on the outcome of events. You can back an outcome, such as your team winning, also known as a ‘buy’. Or, if you think something won’t win, you can place a lay bet, essentially, betting on that outcome not happening.
Betting exchanges take revenue by charging a commission on winning bets.
Betfair is the only betting exchange that is licensed and regulated in Australia.
Bookmakers set the odds for any outcome and state their prices as they wish. Whereas, with a betting exchange, the market (you, the bettor) set odds and wait for another bettor to match the odds. That’s why, generally, prices are better with betting exchanges like Betfair, who claim that the odds are up to 20% higher.
Bookmakers only offer odds on teams or horses to win, whereas a lay bet placed on a betting exchange, allows you to bet against an outcome.
With Betfair you can implement a hedging strategy and trade bets. This involves you predicting which way the market will shift in order to be successful. Implementing a hedge betting strategy is more cumbersome using fixed odds bookmakers.
Pros and cons:
|you can act like a bookmaker and set your own odds||Betfair takes up to 5% commission on any winning bet, which can add up over time|
|you can generally get better odds with Betfair||the commission taken is not shown in the odds, so the benefit of better odds may be negated by the commission payable on the winning bet (and it makes it harder to calculate your total winning payout)|
|you can bet against an outcome with a lay bet, rather than just betting on a win||when setting your own odds, you find limited liquidity, meaning you may struggle to find anyone to match your bet – whereas a bookmaker may accept the bet you want to place|
|Betfair offers in-running betting, where you can trade bets by predicting market fluctuations||it’s not possible to place exotic bets like trifectas, multis and quaddies, with a bookmaker rather than Betfair, which mostly concentrates on single event betting|
If you place a winning bet with Betfair you pay a commission, usually 5%. Betfair’s commission rates vary, offering you discounts for your loyalty. The more you use Betfair, the better discounts on commission you can earn. Betfair offers Betfair points with every bet placed, so as you accumulate points, your discount rate improves. Experienced traders using Betfair can get commissions down to about 2%. When you place bets regularly, this discount can have a significant impact on your net gains.
Betfair also uses premium charges for high stakes customers who meet a variety of qualifying criteria, namely betting on multiple markets, making a certain amount of profits and total charges being less than 20% of profit.
Even if you lose with Betfair, you still earn Betfair points, which contribute to you earning benefits via reduced commissions.
Betting with Betfair is simple and easy to learn:
Placing a lay bet with Betfair is quite straightforward too: