Bookmaker margin

Bookmaker margin

Margin is the bookmaker’s commission, which he puts into the odds he creates. The term “margin” came into Russian from French and means an advantage, a difference. Thanks to the margin, the bookmaker earns regardless of how the event ended and what bets were made on it. This is very short, but now we will tell you more about this term often found in betting.

margin - bookmaker's commission

Any person who has ever made a bet at a bookmaker has come across such a concept as margin. If you still don’t know what it is, how to calculate it, and why you need it, read our article!

What is margin and what is it like

To understand this term, let’s consider a boxing match between two equal opponents. The chances of each of them winning are 50 to 50. If we translate this into odds, then they should be 2 for each boxer to win.

But turning to the bookmaker, you will see the coefficient 1.9-1.95, not higher. This difference between 2 and 1.9 is the bookmaker’s margin, which he takes to stay in the win. After all, if the players bet equally at odds of 2, the bookmaker won’t win anything.

Any bookmaker’s offices are divided into two types, depending on the type of margin:

  • Low margin;
  • Fundamental.

The former offer low margins of 2-3%, the most prominent example being the American company Pinnacle Sports. They also offer a small number of pre-match options and high maximum bets. There are practically no Live bets in such bookmakers.

Thanks to this, they balance the received money and in any case make a profit. Usually professional players play in such offices, and this is beneficial to both parties. But the bookmaker must set and correct the odds with surgical precision.

Fundamental bookmakers usually have a margin of 5 to 10%, they are designed primarily for amateur players who bet more in order to excite and increase interest when watching the game. Such bookmakers mainly make money on the bettors’ losses, and for them any unexpected result is a great gift.

Low margin Fundamental
2-3% margin 5-10% margin
Small painting for prematch Large painting on prematch
High maxes Cutting maxes to successful players
There is practically no live Lots of live events

What is a clean market and how a bookmaker makes money on margin

The net market is the bookmaker’s odds without any margin included. Remember the boxer example? – So, in a clean market, you could bet on any of them at odds of 2. These are fair odds that will result in you getting the most out of your bet.

But, as we already wrote above, the bookmaker will not receive a guaranteed profit from this, and this is not included in his plans. It is for this reason that bookmakers include margin in the coefficients in order to remain in the black in any hands.

How bookmaker margin is calculated

After we figured out what the margin is, and why the bookmaker needs it, we can see how exactly it is calculated. If you have not experienced this before, then you might think that everything is very complicated and confusing. But in reality, there is nothing difficult in calculating the margin.

Let’s take a football match between Chelsea and West Ham as an example. The bookmaker gives the following deals on him: P1 – 1.9; X – 3.4; P2 – 3.8.

To make it easier to calculate, let’s convert the coefficients into a percentage probability, for which we divide the unit by the available quote:

  • P1: 1 / 1.9 = 0.526 or 52.6%;
  • X: 1 / 3.4 = 0.294 or 29.4%;
  • P2: 1 / 3.8 = 0.263 or 26.3%.

52.6 + 29.4 + 26.3 = 108.3 – the bookmaker’s margin is 8.3%. It turns out that for every 1,000 rubles wagered, you will in any case give 83 rubles to the bookmaker. In the long run, this can reduce income. That is why you need to know how to calculate the bookmaker’s margin and pay serious attention to it when betting.

Why understand what margin is

Understanding margins is especially important for professional gamblers looking for long-term profits. Amateurs probably won’t even bother with calculating the margin, they are interested in something else. But let’s not talk about them, let’s talk about serious players.

By calculating the margin, you will determine which bookmaker offers a higher odds for the same event. Many bookmakers set different margins in different sports. Simply put, in one bookmaker it is more profitable to bet on football, in another – on basketball, and in the third – on hockey.

Never be lazy to calculate your margin, because this knowledge can play a critical role in the long run. If you bet at random, a bookmaker’s margin that is too high can kill all the work of preparing for the bet and analyzing the match.

If you make 20-30 or even more bets per day, calculating the margin should become a must-have ritual. It is mathematically proven that an increase in margin of only 2.5% in bets on equal outcomes reduces the rate of return on bets by as much as 35-38%. This means that out of every 1000 rubles of profit, you will miss 350-380 rubles. Just imagine how huge these losses are.

To avoid them as much as possible, you need to bet on odds with low margins. Constantly calculating its value, you will be able to find out for yourself which bookmaker offers the lowest rate for a particular fight and place bets with it.

In order not to calculate the margin of each fight on your own, we recommend using special programs that do this automatically. Usually, subscription to them is paid, but its monthly value is not so large as to deprive yourself of the opportunity to save your time and spend it on much more useful things than just calculating dozens or even hundreds of different options.

Of course, all this makes sense if you intend to bet at different bookmakers and have deposits there. If you are registered with only one bookmaker, it makes no sense.

What is registration in different bookmakers for?

We hope you now understand that the presence of deposits in several bookmakers will not be superfluous. There can be many reasons for this: from different margin values, which we have already mentioned above, to different degrees of coverage of events.

To have the maximum chances of success, it is advisable to have accounts in at least 2-3 bookmakers. This will not present any inconvenience for you, but you will be able to choose the really best offer.

The most important reason is the different odds and different margins. We have already written how this affects the long-term game, so we will not repeat ourselves once again. But even the smallest difference in odds with each bet will affect more and more, so you should always try to look for the lowest margin.

Another important factor is max cutting. Many bookmakers sin this way, and if you start winning consistently with one bookmaker, soon the size of the maximum bet can be greatly reduced. Alternating bets with different bookmakers will help maintain variability for longer.

Summing up, I would like to say that each bookmaker, without exception, has its own advantages and disadvantages in various aspects, but a successful combination of the game in different bookmakers will help to get the maximum benefit from the bets.

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