Esports Betting Guide

Beginner guide for esports betting

New to esports betting? Then you have come to the right place! In this guide will go through the basic fundamentals of how betting works, and of course esports betting specifically. First of all, you need to have registered with a betting operator to place a bet and this is really quite simple, but today there are an incredible amount of betting operators to choose from and most of them also offer esports nowadays, even though this is something of a new phenomenon. The most important thing when choosing a betting operator is to find one that primarily focuses on esports and of course that they offer odds for game titles that you follow. Another important thing to note is that the range of different markets is large and that their odds are competitive. We will of course help you find the right operator in this crazy jungle, but once you have made the choice, it is then time to place a bet and now we’ll go over how it works!

There are three common ways to show odds and it is good to know what the three different variants are even though you can usually choose your own preferred ones on operator’s sites.

Decimal Odds: The most common form in Europe. The odds are presented in a decimal form and to calculate their possible profit it is as simple as this: you calculate the odds times your bet amount and then have the result.

  • Example: We bet 100 euros on a winner of a match to the odds of 2.80.
  • 100 eur x 2.80 = 280 eur
  • We receive a total of 280 EUR. Very easy and simple.

Fraction Odds: The traditional odds form still used in the UK and by some betting operators with a British background. Basically, it is the same as decimal odds, but can be a little more difficult to understand if you are not used to using it. The easiest way to explain how this works is to see odds such as: Win / Bet

  • Example: We bet 100 EUR on a winner of a match for the odds 4/1.
  • So if we win, we win four times our bet + the original bet = 500 EUR.
  • Example 2: We bet 100 on a winner of a match to the odds 1/10.
  • If we win, we win 110 EUR.

Moneyline: Often also called American odds which are mainly used in the US and on US gambling sites. These odds are presented in positive and negative formats. A positive number indicates how much you win with a bet of 100 EUR. If the number is negative it indicates how much you need to bet to win 100 EUR.

  • Example 1: We bet 100 EUR on a winner of a match to the odds +400.
  • If we win, we win four times our bet + the original bet = 500 EUR.
  • Example 2: We bet 400 EUR on a winner of a match to the odds -400.
  • If we win, we win 100 EUR + the original bet = 500 EUR. 

For most people, decimal odds are certainly the easiest to handle and also what you have become accustomed to before if you have ever played before, but it is good to know the different variants if you come into contact with it. Fortunately, almost all esports betting companies today offer the opportunity to freely switch between the different types of odds. 

Esports Betting Strategy 

How you choose to bet and especially how much you bet, will be directly deciding for your bottom line and success. The truth is that no matter how good you are, and how good your information is - if you don't keep your wagers to a reasonable level, you won't succeed. Sooner or later we all hit a cold streak and lose several bets in a row, no matter how good it looked beforehand.

Keeping strict rules for your betting budget is by far the most important thing when it comes to being a successful bettor. Maybe you have heard about “units” being used in the betting world before, but if not, we will go through what it means and why it is a really good way to visualize how you should be betting. 

Units refer to your betting budget in % and one unit simply means 1% of your total budget. One unit as such can be any number in real money, as we all have different budgets. The standard is to use around 1-5 units per bet. As a new player we highly recommend sticking to 1-2 units per bet and keep it that way until you have gathered more experience, and as such a better overview of how your betting is evolving.

This might be easier said than done and even if many players start with this strategy, they quickly deviate to win back lost money or they get too confident after a few good results in a row. This is something that truly has to be avoided if you want long term success. Setting strict rules and working towards long term goals is the one thing we have to follow completely. Good and bad stretches will happen to everybody and the only thing that can save us is by having full control over the situation, which in the end means we won't be severely affected by the situation.

To keep track of your results we highly recommend you use an automated spreadsheet online, or a more old school approach would be to write down all your bets yourself. We can't stress enough how important this is and whatever way you choose to do it doesn't matter, as long as you are doing it. 

Betting operators and odds types

We now know a little bit more about how betting works and how you should plan on how to do it. Next step is obviously to find good odds which offer value and this is where player skill and knowledge comes into play. We are not going to sugar coat it - it's no easy task to beat the betting operators, as their knowledge is high and on top of that we need to beat the house edge. Make no mistake, betting operators aren't offering their services for free, they take their share of the cake. As an example a game that is a straight 50/50 beforehand would have odds of 1.9 on both teams, but if an house edge did not exist it would be 2.0 for both teams. That's the harsh reality of betting on esports, or anything else for that matter. This is something we have to overcome to become a winning player, but with all that said it is definitely more than possible if you put in the work needed, through good research and proper bankroll management. The operators aren't perfect robots either and there will always be room to find small edges here and there. 

In this guide we won't be going to go deeper in what markets different games offer and how you efficiently can find the needed information, as you can find this in our game specific guides, that we offer for every game separately. There you can find sources for statistics and other useful information to do background research for your favorite game.

Teemu Maarela image

Teemu Maarela

29 April 2020
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