As written in this article about profitable betting strategy, you first need to make sure you actually have an edge, so track your bets. OddsJam has a free bet tracker that can pull all of your wagers from major sportsbooks like Caesars & BetMGM. Unfortunately, this functionality doesn’t work for all sportsbooks, but it does work for WynnBet, BetMGM, Pointsbet, PrizePicks, Fox Bet & Caesars. I’d recommend syncing at least a few of the books that you use. It takes just a minute.
Prove to yourself over a large amount of wagers that you have an edge. I started out betting $5 to $10 and ruthlessly tracking my bets to ensure I was profitable, then I ramped up.
But, if you have an edge, then more is certainly merrier.
Why Place More Bets?
I frequently get asked the question “How many bets should I place per day?”
If you have an edge, then you want to place more bets. Plain & simple. Some days, I’ll place 100 bets. Other days, I’ll place 10. Here’s an example I saw on Twitter from an OddsJam user.
Think about “risk management.” Imagine there was a coin that was 51% to land on Heads, 49% tails (so 2% “edge” if flipping it for $100).
Would you wager all of your bankroll on heads if there was just one flip? Of course not! The coin is still 49% to show up on tails, so you’d have a 49% of going broke.
What if there were 25,000 flips, though? The coin would be 99.92% to show up on Heads more often than tails…
If you have an edge, then you should want to diversify your “portfolio of profitable bets” as much as possible. If I could place 25,000 Positive EV wagers each day, then I would. I’d, basically, be guaranteed to make money every day… There’s not enough time, though. Sportsbooks don’t “slip up” that much either.
The number of wagers a profitable bettor will place depends on:
How many profitable betting opportunities are available
How much time they have
Where they are located
If it’s a “slow” point in the year (e.g. MLB season), then there will (probably) be less profitable bets. That makes sense – there’s only 1 sport going on. During “fast” periods, when every major sport is going on, there will be a lot more Positive EV wagers. Sportsbooks also have more to manage during busy times, so they tend to “slip up” more, yielding profitable bets.
Certain locations have less sportsbooks. Less sportsbooks = less betting opportunities. Colorado and New Jersey seem to have the best sports betting in the United States.
Long story short, more bets = betterif you have an edge. As I always recommend, please reach out to any of these OddsJam users with questions. They don’t work for us, and many of them are happy to share their experience with variance and making money Positive EV betting.
Why Bet More of Your Bankroll?
If you have an edge, then of course you’d want to bet more of your bankroll. I am NOT trying to promote degenerate gambling… This all assumes you have a true edge and would relate to anything, not just sports betting (e.g. crypto investing, whatever).
If the average return of your wagers is 3% then:
Betting $100 = $3 in returns per day
Betting $1,000 = $30 in returns per day
Betting $10,000 = $300 in returns per day
Of course, you wouldn’t want to put your entire bankroll on one wager… You’d want a highly diversified portfolio of Positive EV wagers. Maybe try out the Kelly Criterion for bankroll management.
What is wild about sports betting and why I’m so obsessed with it is that these returns are daily, at least for the most part. You’re generally betting on NBA games that day. Thus, if you have an edge, your bankroll can grow rapidly. A 3% daily return = 90% monthly, assuming you bet your entire bankroll every day.
Why Get More Sportsbook Accounts?
Sportsbooks have different lines from one another, so you need multiple accounts to get the best possible “price.” This is called line shopping, and it’s sports betting 101. On OddsJam, according to bet tracker data, our typical user has 4 to 5 sportsbook accounts. I’ve had over forty…
Take a look at the example above. Would you rather wager $100 to win $145 on Howards moneyline (e.g. Caesars) or risk $100 to profit $130 on DraftKings? It may not seem like a big deal, but these differences in odds mean everything in the long run.
You will not win every bet. What will make you profitable in the long run is getting advantageous prices.
As an example… imagine you went 50-50 (e.g. 50 wins and 50 loses).
At +100 odds, your net profit would be $0
At +105 odds, your net profit would be $250
At -105 odds, your net profit would be -$238.10
As a related point, more sportsbook accounts = more profitable bets. Check out the screenshot above from OddsJam. All of these plays are profitable (e.g. Positive EV). One play is on FanDuel, the next on Underdog Fantasy and the final play is on Caesars. If you don’t have FanDuel, then you’re missing a great betting opportunity on the Eastern Michigan vs. Oakland game.
I never understand how people can fall into the trap of betting on just 1 sport. It doesn’t make sense. If there’s a highly profitable tennis bet, wouldn’t you want to take it? Imagine every sportsbook was offering +100 odds on Rublev moneyline, and you were able to find +140 on DraftKings. Wouldn’t you want to bet it?
I bet on every sport, it just makes sense. The same sports betting math & concepts apply. Why limit yourself?
Why Place Bets Further Out?
Another question I get asked is “How far in advance should I place my bets?”
Of course, a 2% daily return is better than a 2% monthly return, but I try to never miss a profitable bet. Great lines don’t last forever. The sportsbooks will adjust lines once they realize they’re offering a bet with an “edge.”
Here’s a World Cup bet I placed two weeks in advance. Why not? It was super profitable. I locked in a bet with an “edge” and positive profit margin.
Of course, lines also have more time to move if you’re placing bets far in advance. Imagine you bet on the Packers on Monday (for Sunday’s game). There’s 6 days for Aaron Rodgers to get injured. If he did get injured, lines would rip against you. However, there’s also 6 days for the opposing quarterback to get injured. In that case, lines would rip in your favor. This is just random. You can’t know the future.