There is a golden rule of betting that everyone instinctively knows, but so few of us ever put into practice. And it’s beauty is it’s so simple everyone can quickly put it into practice. The rule is this: Not all bets are created equal.
Bet sizing is intimately related to your betting bankroll, and you should always be betting in units relative to the size of your bankroll.
The bet you make on a Sunday afternoon Premier League game to make the match more interesting is not the same as the bet you spent the last week researching on the preceding day’s action. Similarly, the bet you’ve placed after reading a betting preview online of a sport you sometimes watch is not the same as a bet based on a sport you follow closely.
But regardless of these factors, many bettors will religiously stick to flat or level stakes betting, putting £10 on every selection regardless of the nature of the bet. This is costing you money in the long-term and a far better strategy is to adjust your bet sizing according to each individual bet.
Good Bets and Great Bets
Increasing your bet amount when the odds are strongly in your favour is one of the most intuitive strategies around. For examples are you getting 5.0 odds on a bet you think should be closer to 3.0, or 5.0 on a bet you think should be 4.5?
Both are good bets, but one is clearly better than the other and deserving of a more hefty investment. You should start assessing bets not just on whether they are worth making, but on how much they are away from the odds you have calculated.
Even if you haven’t worked out the exact probabilities, you will probably have an understanding of how far from your opinion the odds of each bet are. If Arsenal to win is priced at up 2.0 but you would have been willing to bet on it if it was closer to 1.4 this is a strong betting opportunity and you should increase your stake accordingly.
On the flip side, you could decide to lower your bet stakes if you have less of an edge or this is a market with more unpredictability attached to it. Ultimately, weighing up the risk versus reward is key in betting the right amount in order to maximise wins and minimise losses.
So how do you decide how much to bet? This is where a staking plan comes into play. Put simply though you should assign values to your bets on a scale of 1-10 with a rating of 10 being your maximum bet.
A bet that is a 10 rating could see you bet up to 5% of your bankroll while a bet that is a 1 rating might be just 0.5%. If you don’t have a bankroll then assign values to these bets such as £50 on a 10 bet and £5 on a 1 bet. You can work out the amounts that make sense to you but you should always adjust your bet sizes based on the information you have.
Bet sizing is intimately related to your betting bankroll, which we explain in more detail here, and you should always be betting in units relative to the size of your bankroll. Hopefully as you begin to make money from your bets you will find your bankroll increases and you can start to adjust your bet sizing as a result.
You should also raise your bet stakes to reflect your bankroll so that you have a fixed percentage on every bet. If the fund grows from £500 to £550 then instead of betting 2% of the starting figure (€10), you would bet 2% of the total bank (£11). It doesn’t sound like much, but following this method should help your bankroll to grow at a quicker rate.
Top tips for bet sizing:
- Not all bets are created equal so don’t always bet the same amount
- Assign values to your bets and adjust your bet size accordingly
- Adjust your minimum and maximum bet size as your bankroll changes