A Complete Guide to Matched Betting

The majority of online bookmakers offer some sort of free bet or incentive to all new customers who sign up to their service.

These welcome bonuses are a great way to get started and they also open up the possibility for new players to place a bet without having to use their own funds. As a result, many people can take advantage of matched betting, which essentially allows players to make money on a selected sporting event, regardless of the outcome.

What is Matched Betting?

Matched betting is a technique that allows punters to leverage the free bets or bonuses advertised by various betting websites, providing a mathematical possibility of achieving a favorable outcome. This strategy will require you to open multiple online bookmaker accounts.

By covering all potential outcomes, players can make a guaranteed profit on any sporting event by simply taking advantage of a bookmaker’s generosity.

Check Out Our Matched Betting Infographic

How Does Matched Betting Work?

Matched betting will require players to open a new account with one of the online bookmakers and also potentially sign up for an online betting exchange (Betfair, Smarkets etc).

Upon completing the process, it is vitally important to ensure that you can opt in to the welcome bonus. This will usually come in the form of a ‘Bet £10 and Get a £20 Free Bet’ style offer.

  • Step 1

Sign Up for an account, and deposit £10. This is known as your qualifying bet.

  • Step 2

Place £10 on an outcome of an event – for example – Burnley to beat Bournemouth. This is often referred to as a ‘Back Bet’.

  • Step 3

Sign up or log onto a betting exchange and ‘lay’ a bet on the opposite outcome. A ‘lay bet’ is essentially betting on something NOT to happen. In this example, you are laying Burnley – if they draw or lose, you’re a winner!
This will completely cancel out the risk of your ‘back bet’ losing.

*This means that you now have all outcomes covered. If Burnley win, the ‘back bet’ is a winner, if they fail to pick up three points, you’re ‘lay bet’ is a winner*

  • Step 4

Regardless of the outcome, you will have made a profit as your back bet has now unlocked the £20 free bet.

  • Step 5

Repeat the process with other online bookmakers who offer similar incentives.

Top Sites For Matched Betting Strategy

#
Betting Site
Bonus
Bet Now
1
Betfred casino_120x120
BetFred
4.8
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UK Licensed
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2
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10bet
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3
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4
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Coral
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5
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6
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4.5
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uk
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7
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Bet365
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uk
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8
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Unibet
4.3
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uk
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18+ begambleaware.org. New customers only. Min deposit £10. Money back as bonus if first bet loses. Wagering requirements: sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), casino 50x. Unless forfeited the sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the casino bonus. Bonus expires 7 days after opt-in. No deposit required for NI customers. Call 08081699314 to claim. Full T&Cs apply. #AD
9
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BoyleSports
4.3
£25 Bet Bundle
uk
UK Licensed
Competitive Odds
18+. UK Customers (Excluding NI) only. Cash stakes only. Min £10 stake required for initial £5 free bet. Min odds ½. Max £25 in free bets. Subsequent free bets equal 50% average of each 3 £5 max qualifying bets. 13 settled bets required to receive full £25 free bet. Qualifying bets must be placed on sportsbook within 30 days of opening account. Cashed out bets will not qualify towards your average stake. One free bet offer per customer, household or IP address only. Free bet expires after 7 days. Payment method restrictions apply. T&Cs apply
10
betway_120x120
Betway
4.2
Get £10 in Free Bets
uk
UK Licensed
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New UK customers only, €10 Min Deposit. 100 % matched free beton your first deposit of €10.1 x wagering at odds of 1.75+ to unlock Free Bets. Debit Card & Paypal deposits only. This offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. Full Terms apply.
11
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Kwiff
4.2
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uk
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12
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SportingBet
4.1
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13
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14
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Mobile Wins
4.1
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uk
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15
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Betuk
4.0
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uk
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T&Cs apply. New customers, Deposit & Place a Bet within 7 days, and settle a £10 minimum bet at odds of 4/5 (1.8) or greater, to be credited with 3x £10 free bets: 1 x £10 Horse racing, 1 x £10 Free Bet Builder and 1 x £10 Football. Stake not returned. Opt-in required. 18+ BeGambleAware.org.

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17
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BetVictor
4.0
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How Much Profit Can I Make from Matched Betting?

Generally speaking, the majority of betting exchanges will take commission of 5% (it’s how they make a profit) so you should be left with around 95% of your free bet. All winnings accrued via traditional online bookmakers are tax-free.

Your profit may also depend on the odds of your chosen selection; however, the generosity of the bookmakers may also affect your profit margins. Most operators will remain fairly consistent with their welcome offers; however, these may change from time-to-time.

  • Taking advantage of a £20 free bet will result in far less profit than unlocking a £50 free bet.

It is believed that you can make up to £2,000 using matched betting, although it will take time to sift through the current range of welcome offers. A number of sites also offer a matched betting algorithm or calculator and this will actively seek out the best bonuses and help calculate how much you would need to back/lay in order to make a healthy and consistent profit. Don’t be afraid to use one of these.

  • It is recommended that you have a matched betting bank of around £50 in order to start making a profit.

Once you’ve opened a number of accounts, further profit can be made by taking advantage of existing customer offers.

Matched Betting FAQ

What are the Risks Involved?

The joy of matched betting is that there are very few risks involved. By correctly backing and laying the same outcome, you are completely eliminating the possibility of making a loss. However, from time-to-time, a misplaced selection or incorrectly staked bet may lead to small loss. It’s important to ensure that you are comfortable with the process and know how to successfully back and lay a selection. Free bets may also take 48 hours to be processed, so it’s important to be patient and not rush matched betting (particularly at the beginning) as this can occasionally lead to a loss.

How Long Does Matched Betting Take?

Placing a back and lay bet is likely to take less than 15 minutes. However, the most time-consuming element of matched betting involves searching through all of the welcome bonuses and offers and deciding where to start. Luckily BetonSports UK has a list of the highest rated bookmakers with up-to-date details of their current offers. The more time that you are able to dedicate to matched betting, the more profit you are likely to make. Luckily, it can also fit around other life events and the likelihood is that it will only take a couple of hours each week to make a steady and consistent profit. Taking advantage of bookmakers offers can also now be completed using a tablet or smartphone, so it’s entirely possible to begin matched betting on your way to work or in front of the TV each evening.

Do I need Knowledge of Sporting Betting?

Generally speaking, you do not need any prior knowledge of sports betting in order to capitalise from matched betting. Having previous working knowledge of Betfair Exchange and how back and lay betting works will save plenty of time at the beginning of the process, however, this is far from essential. Matched betting works on a mathematical system which requires very little betting knowledge and this helps make it incredibly accessible for beginners.

Is Matched Betting Legal?

Matched betting is completely legal in the UK and although you won’t find online bookmakers actively encouraging customers to do it, it is a perfectly legitimate way of making a profit. It has even received coverage from the mainstream media. Most UK bookmakers will be keen to add new customers to their database and are therefore unlikely to scrap their welcome offers anytime soon.

How Much Profit Can I Make Using Matched Betting?

Profit will largely depend on how much time you dedicate to matched betting. There are a limited number of online bookmakers however, and it is recommended that check out our reviews at BetonSports in order to help you establish the most reliable UK operators. Some matched bettors can make up to £1,000 per month, although it is important not to set targets. Even if you begin slowly and make £50 a month, that will still provide an additional risk-free £600 per year.

Matched Betting Tips and Tricks

Here at BetonSports UK we have five tips to help you increase your potential profit from matched betting:

1. Open a Betfair Exchange Account

Betfair is the undisputed king of the betting exchanges with thousands of sporting events available each and every hour. Players will bet against one another and this offers the opportunity to ‘lay’ bets. This is essential for making a profit using matched betting.

New Betfair Exchange customers will also be eligible for a welcome bonus and regular users are also likely to receive regular offers. These can be used as part of the matched betting process.

2. Take Time to Get to Grips with Sportsbooks and Exchanges

Although you aren’t required to have any prior knowledge of sports betting and online sportsbooks, it is strongly advised to take a few minutes to become accustomed to the layout and accessibility of your chosen site.

This will help speed up the process in the long run.

3. Set Up a Separate Email Account for Matched Betting

Once you have signed up for multiple bookmaker accounts, you’ll receive regular correspondence from each operator.

These messages will often contain offers and bonuses which could be used as part of the matched betting process. By opening a new and separate email account, you’ll be able to quickly access this information without having to sift through thousands of other messages.

4. Lower Commission = Higher Profits

Although Betfair Exchange is the best site to use for laying bets, there are also a number of other operators who offer a very similar service.

These will all offer varying levels of commission so it’s important to shop around to ensure you can boost those all-important profit margins.

Betdaq now take just 2% commission from the majority of transactions and this can make a huge difference in the long run. If you can find an exchange with a low commission rate OR take advantage of an offer which reduces commission for a selected time period, this will be hugely advantageous. other recommended sites are 888sport & Ladbrokes.

5. Look for Teams with Similar Odds

When you’re starting out, it can be tempting to just pick the first match that you come across. However, it is far more profitable to select a match in which the two teams are closely matched in the odds.

Selecting a match with the favourites priced up at 1/5 will minimise profit as your potential returns will be extremely low.
If you can find a game in which each side is around 6/4 or 7/4, this is the ideal contest to begin your matched betting journey.

BetonSports’s Take on Matched Betting

Here at BetonSports UK, we want to help you make a regular profit and by following these techniques, you’ll stand a better chance of increasing your returns when it comes to matched betting.

Our bookmaker reviews and comprehensive database of welcome offers will also help cut down the amount of time spent looking for new customer bonuses. Matched betting is the ideal chance to make some extra cash and to take advantage of the bookmaker’s generosity.

It is 100% legal in the UK and it is extremely straightforward to get started.