Online Betting: A beginners guide

If you have just turned 18 or maybe you have decided to start online betting for the first time, it is likely that you will have several questions. “How” and “Where” would be two just for starters. The questions that a beginner to online betting probably has are many, and they would be in many different areas. The most common questions relate to transactions, and have to do with security and selecting the right bookmaker. We are going to look at some of the more common questions here and now, but remember you can always ask the LegalBet community about any other questions you may have in the comments below the article.

1. Is there a risk of my data being leaked to third parties?

Many people like to gamble at the betting shops instead of going online because there is a trust issue. They think they cannot trust the internet and the bookmakers that use it will somehow cheat them, and they also believe that their money could be in danger from third parties who may gain access to their personal data. Of course this is not the reality of the situation, online bookmakers make money from the built in margin to the odds they offer and have no need to “cheat” people. Furthermore as all gambling operators in the UK provide their sites with SSL encryption, which secures the data of their users. This means that not even the employees of the betting company themselves have access to the data given by their customers.

2. Can my account be banned or limited?

Bookmakers may not have access to your data, but they can obviously see your betting activity, and they do monitor users activity. The purpose of this monitoring is to detect any irregular behavior that violates their rules, with which the bettors have agreed during their registration. The most common reason for restricting or even closing an account is where someone is betting on value lines, where the bookmaker is best priced, especially if this price is higher than that of the betting exchanges. 

In regards to other reasons for accounts being closed, in order to have an active account sooner or later you will be asked to verify your identity and prove firstly that you are over 18 and secondly you are residing in the country at the time. You do this by sending the necessary documents to the betting company, usually a utility bill of some kind and a copy of your passport. Another reason that can lead the bookmaker to close an account is the finding that one person has made multiple registrations or even given false information during the registration. It should go without saying, do not do this.

3. What are the advantages of online betting?

At the moment, there are about 60 legal betting companies operating in the UK, with most of them offering a good set of promotions and a wide range of betting options. Betting with an online account means that you can bet 24 hours a day 7 days a week and importantly you can do it from anywhere (via smartphones or a tablet). The ability to bet online and on the move allows you to take advantage of time sensitive information or even take up any bookmaker offers or promotions that require you to bet on an event starting quickly. It is likely that if you have several online accounts you can easily see who has the best odds on the selection you want to bet on and you can place the bet with who is best without leaving you seat.

4. How can I deposit and withdraw money with an online bookmaker?

The transaction methods offered vary from bookmaker to bookmaker but all of them will have at least one method you can use. The majority of people use a debit card to deposit money directly from their bank account but also there are other third party payment services available, PayPal probably being the most popular but also Skrill and a few others are catching up quickly.

5. How to choose the best bookmaker for you?

Which bookmaker, or bookmakers, you use are a matter of personal choice and will vary from one individual to the next. Here are some things to look for though when selecting a bookmaker:

  • Reputation

The reputation of any bookmaker is shaped over many years and is made up mainly from the experiences of the players who bet with them. Before you use a new bookmaker it is a good idea to see what other people are saying about them first.

  • Customer service

A negative experience can be turned into a positive one of the customer service agents involved do a good job. Having well trained staff, wanting to resolve the issue, available 24 hours a day through a large range of mediums is likely to make any bookmaker a place to bet with.

  • Pay Out times

How swiftly and easily a withdrawal is processed is likely to feature highly on a list of “wants”. Some transactions are actually instant both to deposit and withdraw, some withdrawals may take 30minutes, some a few hours. At the other extreme some may take 3 or more days and even have fees attached to receive the money. Look into these things.

  • Good odds

The higher the odds available the lower the bookmakers margin, and this means that there is a higher return to the bettors and more chance that you will make a long run profit, since when you win, you win more!

  • Promotions

Linked to the above really, promotions can increase either your return by boosting certain bet payouts, or increase the chances of you winning or more commonly increasing the number of scenarios where you just do not lose. The range of promotions and bonuses on offer at each bookmaker should be very carefully considered as it can make all the difference in the long run.

  • Range of Markets

If you are interested in quite niche sports or events which do not have mainstream support, you may find that not ALL bookmakers will provide odds for this. Perhaps you support a football team in the lower leagues, or you are a big E-Sports fan, check who is going to provide the betting options you want, because not all will. Similarly the range of bets per market will vary from bookmaker to bookmaker, whilst all will allow you to bet on who will win, you may want other variables and these will not be consistent across the board.