Bettor Guide presents for you the ten things an internet bettor should look for when searching for the best sites.
1. Tried and Trusted
The high street names all have excellent sites and are an extremely safe bet. These established and trusted big name bookies have sites that are well organized, cover all the basics and have many of the customer friendly features mentioned in the remainder of this list.
2. Variety is the Spice of Life
The best sites offer the widest variety of sporting events; that includes sports popular on both sides of the Atlantic as well as international events. Some sites have a great range of information and services for one sport, say horse racing, but are thinner on the ground in other areas.
Investigate whether sites have variety and depth that you are looking for.
3. Better Betting
Online bookies can have all the frills on the market but as betting is likely to be your main thrill, this is the section you need to focus on. Do they offer a variety of bets? Are their odds competitive? Are wagers available on a wide range of sports? Is in-game betting available? Do they offer free bets or reduced priced bets? Do they go the extra mile and have betting format converters or currency converters? Is the process for placing a bet quick and simple?
Look for those little extras too – sign up bonuses, promos, discounts and loyalty bonuses.
This is the ‘nuts and bolts’ of the site so focus on whether their offer is as good as rival online sportsbooks.
4. All Under One Roof
Many sites offer access to a wide range of interests commonly enjoyed by punters, these are likely to include online casinos, bingo halls and poker rooms. Some like the convenience of having an extensive range of activities all under one roof.
5. No News?….. You Lose
No serious punter would dream of placing a bet without first checking the most up to date situation with the athletes, team, weather conditions, form etc. Sites that offer up to the minute news updates, podcasts, insider gossip and pundit tips are all popular with the punters.
6. Live Action
Online sportsbooks offer the advantage of being able to view the sporting event you are betting on. Many sites have the facility to listen in on live radio broadcasts or access live TV streaming. This gives you the added temptation of in-game betting too so if you lose your original bet you can simply place another, based on the most up to date situation. Even if your original bet is still on the table, you may want to bet on a variety of side-bets – score at half time, first person to score/get a penalty/make a foul… you name it, there’s a likelihood you can bet on it!
7. Ease of Payment
You want to choose a site which accepts a good variety of payment methods; has secure banking in place and offers a safe and quick payment and withdrawal service.
Since many online sportsbook sites contain a mass of information, the way that they present this to the users is crucial. Sites need to be suitable for rookies and pros alike and information needs to be well organized and accessible.
The basic elements needed for high usability are: ease of navigation, quick page loading, clear layout and decent sized text. The bottom line is that you want to minimize the number of clicks you need gain access the service you are looking for.
9. The Social Side
The bookie’s has always been the place for a bit of banter. Online sportsbooks offer this in the form of chat rooms and forums. Look for sites with busy chat rooms – lots of posts on a wide range of topics. Check out that the sports that interest you are reflected in these posts. Look at the responses to posts and see users are friendly.
The social side of sportsbetting sites is a great place to let off some steam – celebrate the highs and commiserate the lows. It’s a great arena to swap info on other sites, get some betting tips and generally meet up with like minded people. For those in need of clarification; chat rooms offer live, instant chat and forums are to post up messages to be read and responded to over time.
10. Customer Support
You should look for sites that have accessible customer service. Many offer real-time, telephone or email support.