Most of us have heard the term, bookmakers, or similar bookie in the UK. But what are they doing and what is their purpose? Its basic meaning is a person or organisation keeping track of things. And, in the event of sports betting, they keep records and offer odds on certain outcomes of a particular game or race. Effectively creating a main hub for punters to participate in a sport by placing a money wager. But also offer a community of like-minded individuals where ideas and thoughts get shared, make sense? If not, we urge you to read the full article to get a deeper understanding. Where, we will cover topics like odds compiling, competitor’s odds, and profit margin to mention a few. So, let us open the bookmaker’s book and perhaps we will uncover some secrets the bookies don’t want you to know.

Odds compiling in crude format

For all bookmakers, it starts with the odds. However, to get the odds on football, races, and other sports, some hard work first needs to happen. And before you, as a punter get to explore the different markets and odds, the bookmakers do a lot of background work. That you will never see but are crucial elements to give the punter the end product. And in its early days, the odds were compiled by a person called a trader. That was an individual or group digging deeper into history. As an example, say that team 1 and team 2 was to play a football match. The trader looked back in time and compared the previous games when the 2 teams meet. Where they assessed the likely hood of team 1 winning versus team 2 taking home the victory. And thereafter, add a percentage value or odds on either outcome.

Bookmakers are far from manual labour

Long gone are the days when the traders had daily meetings sharing their thoughts on a certain sports event. But where they also made decisions based on personal or gut feelings. That became obsolete after the introduction of computer power. And these days, not all but 99.9% of the odds on offer are a direct outcome of complex algorithms. Where the different bookmakers feed a program with a huge amount of data to get a value with a minimal error marginal. Which have created another business model to the ever-growing sports betting market. In the end, they are in the business to make money. But, on the other hand, it gives the punter a much better quality product. Which in the end is what you as a punter wants.

Online or offline they are still bookmakers

Indeed, although the recent years have proven that placing a bet online via a sportsbook operator is far more popular than the high street bookmakers. They both are the same thing, a provider of odds where you can place bets on a sporting event. In fact, due to harder compliance rules in the UK in the last years, more and more bricks and mortar bookmakers are considering to close shop. However, as the UK population love to watch football in tandem to place a bet or two, there will always be room for both options to co-exist.bookmakers

Competitor’s odds

For bookmakers, it’s all about attracting customers with odds that are equal or better than its competitors. And as nearly every sportsbook operator work similarly, you will find on most occasions that the odds are exactly the same. Sure it could differ a fraction or so, but in the end, they all offer the same product. It’s not like the old days when bookmakers could have insider knowledge and adjusted the odds accordingly. However, you will also notice that some sportsbook operators do offer a much more competitive or attractive odds to the punter. Now, should you see a noticeable odds difference between operators usually means one of two things. One, the operator has a good profit margin on a different market and like to push a specific game. Two, a major event is going down; as such, the bookmakers are fighting for the customer’s attention.

Profit margin

To keep it simple, let say that team 1 and team 2 has the exact chance of winning. Logically the odds would, therefore, be 1/1. However, offering odds like that would not put any money in the bookmaker’s chest. So instead they would offer something that is beneficial for them. And the same match and scenario are more likely to look something like this. Team 1 at odds of 10/11 and team 2 at the same. Say now that one punter places £10 on team 1 and another punter places the same amount on team 2. Meaning, one of the bettors stands the chance of winning £19,10, including the stake. While the other will lose, indicating the bookmakers pay-out the £19,10 to the winner. But keeps the stake from the looser plus the £0,90 the odds difference made from a 1/1 to a 10/11 odds, known as vigorish.

Legal for close to 60 years

Gambling as such as been around in a recorded arrangement since the 1600s in the UK. Although, the modern format that we see today didn’t happen until 1960 when the first commercial bingo saw daylight. However, it was not until 1961 on May 1st the bookmakers could come out of the darkness and operate on a legal basis. But, due to rigours compliance rules, many shadow operation fell through and never made it to the legal scene. Yet, the interest and hunger for sports betting in the UK was immeasurable. That sparked a sports betting revolution in the UK. Where reports tell us that during its first 6-month of legal status, around 10,000 betting shops popped up around the UK. And fast forward in time, and the Gambling Act 2005, which gave birth to both the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) and the framework for online bookmakers

Bet on bookmakers that will remain

To ensure your safety when it comes to the different option you have. Always make sure that you are visiting a reputable operator. And it should go without saying, but all sports operators we endorse here on-site, like Betfair, bet365 and Paddy Power are all trustworthy operators. As such, you know that your deposits, withdrawals, and account creation are on a safe and secure platform operating on the latest encryption settings. That should be your first priority when looking for new betting sites. Also, if you like to brush up on your knowledge of different betting types, we have you covered. As you will find most common options explained to detail. From the simple 1×2 also known as win draw win to the bit more complicated Asian Handicap. Plus, to pick out the right bookmakers for you, we also explained things like betting bonuses, free bets, and responsible gambling.