Are you an avid sports fan and do you enjoy following a handful of well-known teams? If so, you might have considering placing a wager on an upcoming competition in the past. This is a very popular pastime and well-informed websites such as OddsShark.com will display everything from the latest Superbowl fixtures to the odds associated with golf, cricket and even e-sports.

Still, the principles associated with betting odds can be a bit tricky to understand. This is particularly the case if you are not familiar with the sector. It is always wise to perform a significant amount of research, as you might otherwise make an ill-informed decision. In the same respect, appreciating the primary wagering strategies will provide you with an amazing amount of insight. Let us examine three common approaches as well as what each one entails.

Fractional Odds

Fractional odds are sometimes referred to as Irish or British odds (this strategy is thought to have first developed in the United Kingdom. Fractional odds display the outcome of a specific event with a hyphen or a slash (such as 4/1 or 4-1). Let us now translate fractional odds into a fictional wagering scenario. We will once again use the 4-1 example.

In the event that you place a 4-1 wager, you will win €4 euros for every €1 euro that you bet. Imagine that you place €100 euros towards a prediction that your team will win an upcoming football in match. In a 4-1 scenario, you would walk away with €400 euros. However, your initial stake of €100 euros will also be rewarded. Your winnings will therefore total a tidy €500 euros.

As fractional odds are quite simple to understand, they are used by some of the most well-respected bookmakers from around the world.

Decimal Odds

This next approach has gained popularity across Europe as well as throughout Asia and Australia. Some individuals choose decimal odds due to their straightforward nature. Many feel that these could be the best strategies for beginners.

As you may have guessed, the odds themselves will be displayed in a numerical (decimal) format. This figure will signify the amount of money you would theoretically win for every euro (or pound, for that matter) wagered. The main takeaway point here is that the odds represent the total pay-out as opposed to the profit alone. In other words, your initial stake will be included in the calculations.

Let us refer to the example used in the previous section. Assuming that you wagered €100 euros on 4-1 odds, your net profit would simply be displayed as €400 euros. There would be no need to calculate in the initial stake. Decimal odds can therefore be powerful tools for individuals who wish to accurately gauge the potential outcome of a position without being forced to make any types of calculations. Furthermore, this strategy is a great way to take a quick look at the odds set by bookmakers with a single glance.

American Odds

We now come to American odds. These can also be known as “moneyline” odds (depending upon which online site you access). American odds are slightly different than the approaches highlighted above. You will first notice that the odds are expressed by using a plus (+) or a minus (-) sign.

The minus sign is used to indicate which team is favoured to win (signifying the stake required in order to garner €100 euros). The plus sign is employed to illustrate which team is the underdog. Once again, this stipulates the initial stake needed to recuperate the initial €100 euros that you wagered. Here is an example of how moneyline odds may appear:

  • Team X: +585
  • Team Y: -760

In this case, the sportsbook has given odds of +585 to team X; signifying that its chances of winning are significantly less (approximately 15 per cent) when compared to team Y. So, you would be required to stake €100 euros to potentially walk away with the €585 euros in addition to the €100 euros staked. The total winnings would therefore represent €685 euros.

If you instead prefer team Y (the favourite), you would need to place a stake of €760 euros in order to win €100 euros. If team Y emerges victorious, your total pay-out would therefore amount to €860 euros.

A Personal Choice

Please note that this article was only intended to provide a very brief overview of the primary types of odds encountered in sports bets. While we have listed the fundamentals of each, it is crucial to perform additional research. You may even choose to experiment with all three variants in order to determine which one suits your unique playing style. With time and patience, you could very well enjoy success!