Although online betting has been around for almost as long as there has been an internet, there are always going to be people who are new to the process. Whether they have moved between states and are now in a location where betting is regulated, they have recently turned 18, or simply because they have become interested in betting, any newcomer will initially find the world of betting to have a culture all of its own, with its own jargon, processes and customer base.
It goes without saying that a wide range of choice can be found out there with dozens of sites offering dozens of games. If you’re making your initial steps in this new world, then it is all the more important to give some thought to how you can feel more comfortable in this space. And with that, it is important to learn all the things a first-time bettor needs to know. In this article, we’ll go through all of that for you.
Don’t expect to become rich
There is no shortcut to incredible riches, and if you expect to find it in a casino or sportsbook, you will be waiting a while. Betting should not be treated as a source of income, in fact you should only ever bet money you can afford to lose. In a good situation, you will win money and that is definitely better than losing it. But the potential to make it a stable income, let alone becoming rich enough to quit the day job, is not realistic. You might as well audition for reality TV if that’s what you’re looking for.
Make a betting budget
As a first-time bettor, you are automatically more vulnerable to mistakes and to offers which look better than they are. There is certainly a chance that you will lose wagers, and this makes it all the more important that you keep some money specifically for betting. This shouldn’t come out of any other budget, it needs to be from disposable income, and when it is tapped out, that’s it. Learn to see your betting budget as hypothetical money – because you might win, and you might lose, and you can’t be in a situation where you need a team to win a game so that you can stay in your home – which does happen to bettors who don’t manage their bankroll.
Read everything you can from trustworthy sources
Anyone who tells you that betting will be your path to untold riches is lying to you. Anyone who tells you that your first bet is the start of a chain of events that ends with you selling your car to play blackjack is being melodramatic. There are people who bet as a job, or at least to the point where they are experts, and while they’re not billionaires they do know how to manage risk and bet sensibly. Read as much as you can from sources you can trust, seek out forums and just absorb the most sensible advice you can. Some people learn their lessons from a string of poor choices – you can learn your lessons from people who have analyzed those choices.
If you have niche knowledge, use it
Most people will know who is the world champion in the sport they love, and plenty will know who the best teams are even in sports they don’t really care about. When betting on sport, that level of knowledge isn’t especially useful, because everyone else knows it including the bookmaker. But if you’ve gleaned a lot of knowledge about college basketball over the years, you might be in a position to leverage that information, as there are often some very misaligned odds in that version of the sport. Or maybe you’ve got a deep interest in Vietnamese football. That puts you in a position to spot off-kilter prices and exploit them; they’d be corrected in seconds if they were on English or Italian games.
Betting is tricky to get right, and caution is the essential tool when you’re starting out. It’s much better to regret the bets you didn’t make than the ones you did, and as long as you stick to the above rules, you can make the most of the experience.