Matched Betting

Guest Post: Matched Betting to Betfair Trading

matched betting to betfair trading Laurence story
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I get quite a lot of mail from followers in similar positions, going through the same things but feeling as though it only happens to them!

It’s not unusual to feel like this (as I once did). One of the followers has kindly written a guest post about how he got into trading Betfair.



Guest Post: Laurence, 24, Manchester.

My Background:

I like to think I’m still fairly young but throughout my childhood, I never had any interest in sports. Quite the opposite in fact!

I was more of a music guy and could not get my head around people finding entertainment in balls hitting the back of nets. I studied music production at university but spent most of my time learning to make money for myself. Projects ranged from running a (techno) club night, building websites and buying+selling anything I could get my hands on. Basically, I learnt how to handle money and getting a real job never really occurred to me…

My introduction to sports betting/trading:

After uni, a family member introduced me to matched betting. It was fast, easy money. Even still, good things don’t last forever and I decided to look more deeply into the betting exchanges that I was using to lay off the free bets with.

I stumbled across Caans videos on Youtube and watched him print money trading the pre-race markets. I was hooked. It’s hard to say exactly how I spent the first few months “trading” as it’s all different with hindsight, but recently I looked back on some of my screenshots and it was quite frankly….embarrassing. I would be attempting to trade Irish races on a Monday afternoon using stakes 1/3rd the size of my bank.

No wonder I lost money.

Starting to profit:

It’s something you simply ignore when you first start off, but you soon realise that working on your mindset is critical to long term profitable trading. I started to write a trading diary where I would record (in horrendous amounts of detail) my trades for the day. I would include things like:

  • What fundamental analysis backed up my trade
  • What technical analysis backed up by trade
  • How I felt emotionally when making the trade
  • How many cups of coffee I’d had
  • How long I had been working for that day

The list goes on…

Although I went into too much detail to continue making records like this in the future, I began to notice particular patterns that were contributing to losing streaks and/or winning streaks. It was a game changer.

The big losses continued to haunt me for much longer than I had hoped. They were often due to technical errors or accidentally putting a £200 back bet in-running instead of £2… Silly stuff. It’s important to keep your spirits up at this stage as despite the stupid mistakes, I was doing well with my general trading process.

Cut out the big losses and let your small returns shine through. Simple!

Future Focus:

Like most new traders, I’d love to trade everything I can get my hands on. I don’t even know the rules of Cricket but would love to trade it! Luckily I’ve come to realise that you can’t be an expert in a massive amount of sports so I’ve chosen a few to stick at until things change:

  • Pre-Race and In Play Horses
  • Tennis
  • E-Sports Betting (CSGO in particular)
  • Football (leagues only)

Out of all of the above, I’d like to focus more on E-Sports Betting. Most people don’t even know what it is so even if you know a little bit about it, you have an advantage over most people. Plus, I always dreamed of the day where I could get paid to play computer games for a living. Getting paid to watch and bet on them is close enough, right?!?

If you take anything from reading this… You really have to focus on your strengths. I know it’s a cliché. You can waste lots of time and money trying to trade sports you have no idea about. Make it easier for yourself and focus on one thing at a time.

Some of you might be wondering what E-Sports is (not to be confused with virtual sports). Basically there are tournaments where professional PC gamers compete for big money. First person shooters and the like. The bookies are starting to add odds for it, although their compilers don’t have a lot to go off. There have been instances where massive value has been left on the table. Potentially, I think it could be a goldmine in future.

Related: Matched Betting to Betfair Trading 12 Page Mini-Guide

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9 thoughts on “Guest Post: Matched Betting to Betfair Trading

  1. Wow. A refreshing read, thanks. Interesting stuff; and something I’m gonna take a look at. Step aside Caan … With a ‘new crop’ of traders like this, you might as well get the pipe n slippers out! I can, in the foreseeable future, see changes in technology that will either help or hinder traders … Depending how tech savvy they are! PCs with uber fast and various shortcuts on their keyboards to do a number of actions requested by the trader. These are similar to gaming keyboards and I fear that good ‘gamers’ will have the potential to become good traders , too, if they can adapt to the understanding of exchanges etc.

    1. Funnily enough I do have a nice gaming keyboard but I rarely use any shortcuts for trading!

      The biggest difference for me has been having access to so many different pools of data and being able to sort through them efficiently. I’m sure the core features I use in excel have been around for a good few years though 🙂

      Trading does have a lot of similarities to gaming. Both traders and gamers sit at a screen all day to try and improve some numbers on a screen!

  2. Great post although I don’t know what you mean by “good things don’t last forever” with regards to matched betting? I’ve been doing it for over 2 years and 1 set of betting accounts can easily bring in £1500-£2000 a month if done right. I’m just about to go full time with it, with trading/arbing only making up about 20% of my income.

    1. Like you say, there is definitely lots of value to be had in matched betting despite it getting harder in more recent years. The only problem is that you are limited by the amount of offers available.

      Trading/betting offers thousands of opportunities every day and the profit potential is virtually limitless

  3. Great Post and I can relate to this. I’ve been matched betting since the beginning of 2013. The landscape of matched betting has changed massively since I started. As it has grown in popularity the standard of the offer has reduced massively. I only do casino offers now anyway. (all my sports book accounts are banned) I’m still making really good money from it. I think it may have a couple of years left in it. Maybe more. My focus is on trading now and i love it. Only just started out at the beginning of Jan and there has been some harsh lessons already but a positive attitude is key. Hopefully this time next year I will have something to smile about with regards to this.

    1. thanks for the comment Ernie, trading is a little different to matched betting, although with the right mindset and persistence you have a far better chance than most to succeed.

      1. I hope that is true.

        I have been matched betting since July 2015. In almost 2 years, it is noticeable the bookies have been tightening up on the offers (I didn’t do it but sky had one where you had to bet £100 worth of inplay tennis bets to get a free £5 bet – the qualifying losses would have outweighed the £5!). Apart from the gubbings, the amount of effort required to earn £500 per month means I am no longer enjoying it.

        I certainly don’t enjoy the absolutely disgusting odds all bookies offer.
        Why the mugs keep using them and not the exchanges is beyond my understanding.

        I have been trading the pre-race horses since January 2017.
        Today, I lost almost £140. The problem: lots of small wins, then huge loss.
        My strike ratio is quite high, but am running at an overall loss of almost £300.

        These are amounts that I can afford to lose. But still, currently filled with frustration.
        Is it normal to lose money when first starting to trade?

        I have been keeping track of the favourite odds (on both races that I trade as well as the ones I don’t), and have recognised a pattern which happens almost every race. So maybe, in the long term I can still crack it.

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