Could a bookie embrace matched betters?
First up, apologies if this is in the wrong place, I'm pretty new to the boards and also to matched betting in general. So feel free to do what needs to be done mods!
This post isn't about any specific bonus offer but more about discussing whether a bookie could make it pay in embracing matched betters and using them as a primary source of income.
As I understand it MBing is frowned upon by most bookies and if they find out that you are doing it they'll gub you quicker than a snake striking a field-mouse. And fair enough really, we tend to exploit their weak lines, look for arbs etc; that strategy loses them money.
I've been wondering though, what if a bookie offered a regular % matched bet? Say each week you could get a single special bet where they'd match it by 50%. This approach would mean two things, 1) the MBers would be all over it and 2) the MBers would be looking for high odd matches, as a matched bet is treated the same as a SNR.
If the bookie is clever enough, they'd use APIs to keep their odds under Betfairs and the other exchanges and thus eliminate any truly weak lines (in a match better's eyes).
By embracing MBers they'd be getting high numbers of repeat visitors every week all of whom would be looking to bust out at their book. AND because of the way they tailor their offer they'd be getting them betting on the least likely outcomes. Sure, they'd have to pay out more occasionally but that wouldn't necessarily mean they'd lose money a 7.0 is a 7.0 for a reason not a whim.
I just think bookies trying to gub MBers are missing a trick here, they could be using them to effectively pipe money from the exchanges!
I'd be interested to see what others think? And whether I've totally missed a big point!
Books have tried things along that line, that is offering very attractive odds. It never ends well.
Eg US book called NoJuice used to offer a daily (US) game at +100 on each side (2.0 or evens if you prefer). Was absolutly creamed. Gone bust owing thousands in about 2 months.
The high odds like 7.0 are set by the market on Betfair. It reflects the fact that the market believes that 1 in 7 times this event will occur. Therefore, if the market is correct then the bookie would have to pay out about 1 in 7 times. Obviously the bookie would put its odds a little lower than betfair/the market in order to make money (as the bookie expects the event to occur 1 in 7 times but may only offer odds of, say, 5.5 - so it is worth the bookies time).
This means that offering a 50% matched bet, the bookie would lose out on money in the long run. If the bookie was so sure that the event with odds of 7.0 wasn't going to happen it would be more value to them to just lay it on betfair (instead of offering odds of 5.5 with 50% extra - i.e. effectively laying at odds of 8.25).
Its early and I'm sure I've made a couple of mistakes... but the answer to the question no - the bookies aren't missing a trick.
Actually there are bookies that do this. 321Apuesta (and probably others) have their odds tied to Betfair. If you place a bet on their site they will hedge it for a profit on Betfair. This of course means that you are given bad odds. But as a return you will get a bonus.
Originally Posted by youdoo
I am not too familiar with Betchronicle, but I believe they do something similar using Betdaq, although maybe not so religiously as 321Apuesta does. Same with 32redbet and I think also Yogano/offsidebet does it through their ties to BetDaq via 2x2bet. Some people said that Betnow does it, but I have never played there so can't really say.
I don't really believe that bookies hate people who MB. They don't like it, but they don't hate it and want to gub people because they do. I guess you can say the same about value bettors as essentially they bet on the same things. Or maybe not, as a value bettor will more often than not actually leave money in all their accounts. When I look at the forums here I see that a tremendous amount of people cash out as soon as they bring up a balance, and whenever they can, withdraw every single penny from the account and refuse to wager a penny more than what the wr is. I guess it is personal preference on what you are comfortable with, but in the end this is very expensive for the bookies. For the people that do this, there would have to be an extra incentive to keep the money in the account. That is likely to be expensive too.
And if we broaden the term "matched bettor" to advantage player, it will be even worse for the bookie. The advantage player is a shrewd bastard and he is always on the look for something that gives him the extra edge.
I think that regardless of whether or not this bonus bookie that gives us a 50% match gives us crappy odds because they are tied to exchange APIs, there would still be weak lines, so the true odds of a 6/1 bet could in reality be 5/1, betfair just don't know about it yet. And even if they give the clients very bad odds ( worse than Betnow), it will cut dramatically in to their profits. They have expenses other than the player balances to think of.
^^ this offer would also be too expensive to give non-mb/value betting clients also by the way. They can't just print bonus money up like it was free. They actually have to pay people too.
I guess you could say that Will Hill were close to doing what you described when they were at their most generous with the bogofs.
If you add 50% extra cash into your book (as a bookmkaer offering free bets) on a regular basis, you will never be able to make any money? Unless your juice is more than 1/3.
Etherz makes the point best I think. You cant put it any better than that.
I think some sites have tried to appeal directly to the "matched betting" type market and designed bonuses/promotions around that, PortlandBet for instance, but they folded. So it obviously wasn't a huge success.
Have a plan and stick to it
Ah, Portland bet. That was amazing. Based in Australia. Fond memories of getting up all hours of the night to reload and bet on assie football.
PortlandBet were fantastic although it was scary as we all knew something had to give. Essentially I don't think bookies can ever 'cater' (for want of a better word) to matched betters. Let's face it, the only way we should do an offer is if it is +EV and can guarantee ourselves a profit in the long run. Where do you think that guaranteed profit comes from?
Anything that is +EV for the player, is -EV for the bookie. The difference is they are hoping that the money they lose giving the offer to a player is made up for by the player continuing to gamble there without any bonuses / offers / etc.
Hey everyone thanks for the great replies. That does make sense now I think about it some more. I guess we'll just have to hope that the free-bets continue to make marketing sense then!
I'm not sure why bookies are that bothered about MBing. More often than not people bust out on their first deposit then the free bet, so the bookie has made money even if the person doesn't come back. I don't think it's that big a deal to them, to be honest.