Guide to Matched Betting: is it Worth Your Time?

Matched Betting Guide

Matched Betting is one of the best ways to make money online. It’s definitely worth your time.

In this article, you’re going to see why!

A brief insight into what we’re going to cover:

  • Explanation (with example screens)
  • What’s needed and why
  • How to make money Matched Betting
  • How much money can you make
  • The legality of Matched Betting
  • Future sustainability

Matched Betting Guide?

Matched Betting is simple. It’s easy to do and it’s a fantastic way to make money from bookmakers. Basically, Matched Betting is when you take advantage of the promotions that bookmakers offer. They offer promotions to help sign up new customers or drum up business on a specific event.

It’s highly popular and even featured on the Betfair blog.

You will see things like “Bet £5 Get a £20 Free Bet when you sign up” and “Bet £10 Get £5 on England v Portugal.”

It’s very easy to make a profit from these type of offers, you just have to take the time to understand how…

We’re going to properly explain everything below, but to complete a matched bet – you have to place a qualifying bet with the bookmaker, lay this off on the exchanges, then place your free bet and lock in a profit (at minimal risk).

That might sound like a lot, but it really isn’t!

We’re going to break it up step-by-step but first, there’s a list of things you need to start…

What You Need to Start Matched Betting

You don’t need many things to start Matched Betting, but you will need a betting bank. It’s an amount of money you set aside purely for matched betting.

It is not for day-to-day expenses, but like a ‘cashflow’ that will leave you ready to snap up the bookmaker promotions when they come up.

Get a Betfair Exchange account (and free bet) here!

First, you need to open an account with your selected bookmaker and deposit some cash. Then you need to have an exchange account, typically Betfair or Betdaq. You will need to have more money in your exchange account compared to your bookmaker account because you will be laying bets on the exchanges.

Laying betting is when you bet against something to happen so you have to risk more (your liability). However, because you have bet with the bookmaker, you won’t actually be risking the liability (but you still need it in Betfair).

Let’s look at an example; you lay Manchester United at 3.0 (2/1) on Betfair for £50, your liability would be £100. This is why you need to have more money in your exchange account.

Betfair Event Black

Once you’re all ready to go, then it’s time to start making some money! Let’s break it down into simple stages…..

ONE: Bonus Entitlement

A qualifying bet is an action the bookmaker makes you do to get the free bet. It’s the “Bet £50” part of the “Bet £50 Get £50” offer. If we want to make a profit, we can’t just place a bet on anything though. For it to be a good bet in matched betting terms it has to be a “close price match.” To find this, we use a Price Matcher.

A Price Matcher is a piece of software that tells you what is the best bet to place based on how close the bookmaker odds are to the exchange odds. This means that we lose as little as possible on the qualifying bet. If that doesn’t make sense now, don’t worry because it will become clear in Step 2!

When you find a close match in the Price Matcher, you place a back bet with the bookmaker for the amount required. A back bet is just a normal bookmaker bet – backing something to win.

Example: £50 on Manchester United to beat Liverpool at 2/1 (3.0).

TWO: Breaking Even on Qualification

If you’re new to Matched Betting, this is the most difficult step. Take a bit of time to understand this step. We’ll explain everything but if you have any questions please feel free to drop them in the comment section!

Now that you have placed your qualifying bet in Step 1, we need to “lay off” so we don’t lose.

Laying off is when we Lay the same bet that we backed with the bookmaker. To do this we need an exchange like Betfair or Betdaq. An exchange is simply a betting platform that is similar to the stock market but for betting. You can become a bookmaker and take bets on something losing instead of just backing things to win all the time.

If we have backed Manchester United at 3.0 in Step one; we have risked £50 to win £100. We don’t want any risk so now it’s time to lay Manchester United on Betfair. To do this we need a Matched Betting calculator. This will give us the stake we need to lay Manchester United for on Betfair.

If Manchester United are trading 3.1 on Betfair, we simply put all our values into the Matched Betting calculator and it gives us the correct stake.

It will look like this:

Matched Betting Calculator

As you can see, we now know to lay Manchester United for £48.70 at odds of 3.1. This means we lose £2.27 no matter what happens, but we have our free bet to come now which brings us to Step 3.

THREE: Using the Bonus Effectively

Now that you have placed your qualifying bet, you will get a free bet from the bookmaker. The stake of this free bet will depend on the promotion, but let’s imagine it’s Bet365’s Bet £50 Get £50 promotion. This is an existing customer offer too which is great. Step 3 is basically the same as Step 1.

You want to find a good price match in the Price Matcher and place your free bet with the bookmaker. Let’s say you place £50 on Manchester United again at 3.0 (2/1). Now your situation (or book as it’s called in betting) will look like this:

If Manchester United win: Profit £97.73. If Manchester United lose: Loss £2.27. We obviously don’t want to lose or pass up an opportunity to make money so we need to lock in a profit in the fourth and final step.

FOUR: Extracting the Cash!

Step 4 is the same as Step 2, except this time we’re locking in a profit and we have to change the Matched Betting Calculator input slightly. For this step, always remember to select Stake Not Returned (SNR) in the calculator Bet Type. if you don’t select this, your figures will be wrong. Free Bet SNR simply means we won’t be getting a stake back because it’s a free bet with the bookmaker.

In this example, let’s imagine that Manchester United are still 3.1 on Betfair. Let’s put all the right data in the calculator and we will get this screen:

Matched Betting Made Easy

The calculator will give you the correct stake to lay Manchester United, so you lay Manchester United for £32.47 at 3.1 on Betfair. This locks in a profit of £31.81 no matter what the outcome of the game.

Remember: it cost us £2.27 to set up our qualifying bet so we take this off giving us a total profit of £31.81. Excellent money for little to no risk, or time!

The same four easy steps can be repeated with nearly every bookmaker promotion, locking in profit day after day. Your bank can grow very quickly with Matched Betting, but remember that the bookmakers may close your accounts along the way.

Also, you might want to check out this 0% commission offer for Betdaq.

Is Matched Betting a Legitimate Way to Make Money?

Yes, matched betting is 100% legal. You are doing absolutely nothing wrong. The bookmakers won’t like you matched betting because they know that you will win and they will lose. This means that after a while you could have your accounts closed or restricted to pennies. However, because there are so many bookmakers these days it’s ok to have a few accounts closed. It won’t stop you from making money.

Getting a bookmaker account closed or restricted is the worst thing that can happen to you. Once your over 18 and betting is legal in your country, then you can start your matched betting career and make some money.

Why Do Bookmakers Close Or Limit Accounts That Matched Bet?

Bookmakers hate losing money, and Matched Betting is a sure-fire way to beat the bookmakers. They won’t close your account straight away, so you will have plenty of time to profit. Remember to spread your bets around each bookmaker, try to look as normal as possible. Perhaps even place a few £5 mug Acca’s from time to time if you are making plenty of money to keep your account looking like a “mug punter.”

The longer your bookmaker account stays open, the more money you can make. It’s worth “investing” some mug bets to keep your accounts open in the long run. However, some people feel that there are so many bookmakers these days it’s easier to just take all the promotions and if the account gets closed just move on to the next bookmaker.

How Much Money Can You Make Matched Betting?

The amount of money you can make depends on the size of your bank. Someone with a bank size of £2,000 is obviously going to make more than someone with a bank of £200. The great thing about matched betting is your bank will grow quickly. Remember to keep a Profit & Loss, keep track of all your bets and try to make as little mistakes as possible. Always use the Price Matcher and Bet Calculator when you’re starting out. Take your time to learn the processes and how to use exchanges.

money coins and notes gbp

There’s a lot of offers out each day and you can make a tidy sum each month. The average person matched betting usually makes between £300 and £70 per month. Some people even make more than that. It’s like everything else in life – you get out what you put in. If you put the work in, you’re organised and you’re professional about it – you can earn an extra £10,000 per year tax-free.

The great thing about matched betting too is you can do it in the morning, on your break or in the evening so it doesn’t impact your job.

Will Matched Betting Last Forever, Future Guidance?

Matched Betting will always exist because bookmakers will always offer promotions. Bookmakers need to offer promotions to try and get new customers or to drive interest in their product. That’s highly unlikely to change so the future is bright for matched betting.

What comes in the future is down to each individual. How quickly their accounts get closed or restricted or how professional they are with their money. Each person will have to choose their own path but the offers will always be there – it’s up to you to take advantage of them!

Related Read: 5 Matched Betting Tips to WIN Regularly…

4 thoughts on “Guide to Matched Betting: is it Worth Your Time?

  1. Its still worth it you just need to know where to look. In the old days you could get lots of £50 sign ups and they are gone but that was stupidly easy money now you have to look for more variance and be a bit creative but it is still very worth it and will be for a long time!

    1. It’s nowhere near as lucrative as we are led to believe. I’ve just finished signing up with around twenty of the “main” Bookmakers and made around £240 over two weeks with a £1000 bank.
      After the sign-ups, its mainly scraps with the odd fiver or couple of quid from complicated offers.
      You can make a bit more if you are happy depositing money with an online Bookmaker you’ve never heard of, but it’s way too risky for me.

      1. Cool. Although I think you’re doing something pretty wrong if you’ve done that many signups and only made that… there’s far more on offer if it were 20 signups at £25 a bonus that’d be a return of around £400. 80% of the bonus is easily doable and some of the bigger signups yield more than £25 bonus. For example, Unibet is £40. From that, a user should take £32 ish. Throw in the early payout offers and it’s way more. Would advise checking other articles like this too –

        Hope that helps!

  2. Great post Caan, have been following your stuff for a while. You explain the sinplicity of matched betting with aplomb. I think for many, it’s a natural stepping stone before trading, and thus a great way to grow your banks whilst getting to grips with the exchanges.

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