When it comes to online sports betting, bettors need to put themselves in the bookmakers’ shoes. They are operating a for profit corporation. They don’t want you to win. They want to give you attractive odds, but they ultimately are trying to get you to part with your money.
Most bettors are losers, which means the bookmakers are doing their job correctly. However, there are successful players out there. Increasingly so with the boom in online sports betting and the birth of sophisticated software designed to help you make the right choices. Long gone are the days when you had to put pen to paper, do the math yourself, and do complicated equations by hand. Heck, the pocket calculator revolutionized sports betting, and what are computers if not very powerful calculators?
There are a number of nifty pieces of software out there to help you refine your strategy and maximize your winnings. With this in mind, bookmakers have to be rather proactive if they want to successfully protect their bottom line. Indeed, most bookies spend a lot of their time and effort simply balancing the books. They pay the few successful players with the money they make from the many, who do not win. If they’re doing their jobs correctly, they get to pocket the (usually pretty healthy) difference.
However, if a lot of players suddenly start winning, and winning big, then they have a problem. If you get detected using a successful strategy beyond the reasonable markers pre-established by the bookmaker, they will most likely shut you down. They will close your account, ban you from using their services and ban you from their websites.
The best way to avoid this, of course, is to spread the risk. Bet with multiple bookies, especially if you’re using a strategy with which you can set one bookie against another.
Indeed, if you’re mildly successful, it may be safe to stick to just one bookmaker. After all, they need glory boys they can point to and say: “You see, it is possible to make it big with us.” If you’re one of those glory boys, there are all sorts of advantages and privileges that can suddenly be made available to you. It is especially interesting to be one of those people when a bookmaker is building up a client base, as they will most likely let you get away with using your strategy and making it big in the hope that you will inspire others to open accounts with them. If, however, you’re playing on a website servicing millions of bettors every week, you might find yourself in a sticky situation.
Indeed, it may sometimes be harder for the bookie to detect your activity if they have lots of players to watch over. That said, the software they use to build profiles for ‘undesirable’ clients is getting better every year, so the sheer numbers are less and less of a problem for them.
The key to avoiding the bookie from banning you, or from limiting your ability to place high bets, is to work out what sort of profile they don’t want to see pop up on their risk management pc screens and keep your head down.
Indeed, successful players don’t always get banned outright, they also can find themselves in a situation where their accounts suddenly get restricted. This can happen in a variety of different ways. The bookie can limit you to a certain number of bets every day, or they can limit the amount you’re allowed to bet, or both of these and then some.
Does this sound fair to you? No, of course it doesn’t! It is the textbook opposite of ‘fair’. However, it is legal. How could it not be? If it was illegal for them to do this, every bookie would be out of business pretty quickly.
We read in the press constantly about bookies who refuse to pay out large sums of money to winning bettors. Sometimes the bettors protest and take it to the powers that be. The various judicial bodies, committees, and panels, in charge of weighing in on this, rarely if ever side with the bettor. To do so would set a dangerous precedent. More often than not, they side with the bookie, however unfair this may be.
The moral of the story? Don’t think your bookie is a schmuck. They are most definitely not. Don’t try to take them for a ride, either. At least not too much. If you have a winning strategy, learn to let it make you money over the long term. Don’t always try to win as much as you can. If you respect the fact that your bookie has to make some money too, then your bookie will in turn be more inclined to reciprocate that feeling.
After all, betting is supposed to be fun, right?