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The Art of Oddsmaking: How to Become a Bookie

If you want to know how to become a bookie, you should understand the art of oddsmaking.

Sports betting has grown in popularity. So much so, that sports information companies like ESPN and CBS Sports have taken to providing betting lines and free picks.

Sports betting itself isn’t the only growth in the industry. Many individuals have decided to create online home businesses where they offer sportsbook software to friends and family who want to wager on their favorite teams.

Some of these individual sportsbook operators use per head services. We call a person who becomes a pph sportsbook bookie an agent.

Organizations like provide bookie software with odds from one of the best oddsmaking companies in the world. No thinking required.

But just because you don’t have to think, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t think. By understanding the art of bookmaking, you can become a better bookmaker.

Doing so helps you build a more profitable sportsbook.

How bookies make money

Most of you reading this know how a bookie makes money. Profit doesn’t come in the form of wagering dollars.

Instead, bookies make a profit via betting fees. We call those betting fees juice.

Let’s say one of your players wagers $200 on the Eagles at -6 to beat the Cowboys. At the standard 10%, your fee for accepting the bet is $20.

In sports betting, bookies strive to keep their fees. That’s all they want to do. You don’t care if the Eagles cover the spread.

Ah, but how can you ensure you keep the $20? You protect the $20 fee, what we call “juice” or “vig”, by accepting a wager for $200 on the Cowboys to cover.

If that happens, you’ve made $20 from the Eagles wager, but you’ve also made $20 from the $200 bet on the Cowboys.

That’s a total of $40 in juice that you’ve made from accepting $400 in bets.

What happens if none of your players wagers $200 on the Cowboys?

If you use our pay per head service, you can utilize your layoff account.

If none of your players placed a $200 wager on the Cowboys, you must find a way to protect the $20 vig from the Eagles wager. You do that by making a $200 wager in your layoff account.

If the Eagles cover, you use the $200 you made in your layoff account to pay your player. If the Cowboys cover, you use the $200 you made from your player to pay off your Cowboys wager in your layoff account.

That protects the $20 juice.

What makes oddsmaking art

Now that you understand how to be a bookie, we can discuss oddsmaking and why it’s art. Simply put, bookmakers set odds that attract wagering on both sides of a spread.

Think of each wager as having two sides of a coin. We can do this by considering our Eagles and Cowboys example.

  • Eagles -6 (-110)
  • Cowboys +6 (-110)

First, let’s break apart the -110. By -110, we mean that players must risk 10% juice for every $100 the player hopes to profit.

If a player wants to make $200 in profit, the player must risk $220. If the player wants to make $500 in profit, the player must risk $550.

The payout on ATS wagers is minus your bookie website fee. So, if a player risks $500 and wins the bet, you send the player back his initial risk, the $500. You only send the player back $450 in profit, though, for a total of $950.

And you keep the other $50.

You could use your layoff account to ensure you don’t lose the $50. But isn’t $100 better than $50?

So, you want to entice a player to wager $500 on the Cowboys. That way, you make 10% of $1,000 instead of 10% of $500.

You entice players to make wagers by adjusting odds, this is what makes oddsmaking an art form.

How bookies use oddsmaking to attract wagers

Although you get the best possible odds, you have a line mover. The line mover allows you to change betting odds to reflect your specific players’ tastes.

What if in our example your customers live in the city where the Cowboys play? Your players always wager on the Cowboys.

Every time your players see a Cowboys game with a betting line, they jump on it. They don’t care what that line is.

To attract bets on the Eagles, you could change the odds so that the Eagles are -5 ½ or even -5. Remember, your clients will always bet on the Cowboys no matter the line.

So, you aren’t risking losing out on Cowboys wagers.

What you are doing is attracting possible wagers on the Eagles. That’s what makes oddsmaking art.

For you, the sportsbook agent, oddsmaking isn’t about setting a line. It’s about adjusting a line so that you mustn’t use your layoff account.

NFL season on track for Sep 10

If you become a bookie agent with PayPerHead, you will get the best starting odds, but you also get other price per head service tools and features.

That includes the Agent Payment Solution. Our APS is the only one of its kind that allows for credit card transactions.

Join now so that our customer service professionals can show you how easy it is to import your players. We also offer the best referral program in the industry. Plus, you still have time to take advantage of our $3 per head for up to 3-months promotion.  

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