Value Betting is King and the Key to Long-Term Profit

Written by Steve Brown

Value is King text with a crown

The gambling world is forever expanding; new sports, new bookies, new markets and you can even have a bet on X Factor!

You no longer need to trudge down to your local bookmaker or into the nearest town to place a bet. These days, you don’t even have to get out of bed!

The advent of online betting has changed our lives. There's so much choice we are almost spoilt, but does all this make it any easier for us to make a profit from our betting? In some ways it does, in others not at all.

One thing that hasn't changed is that value betting is king for ensuring a long term profit.

In this article, I will discuss how the battle with the bookies has changed, how they set their odds, how to measure success, what is value betting and why is it the reason you will be profitable long term or not.

Battling with the Bookies

In times past, punters were battling with a bookie to make profit and we all know how hard that was.

It was tough going because there was no such thing as 'enlightened betting'. In the main, punters just backed the favourite all the time which is exactly what the bookies wanted them to do.

You don’t need two guesses to pick who came out on top... (it wasn’t the punter)

Nowadays, we are much more likely to do the vast majority of our gambling online. All the main books are online and you can still do your daily jousting with them if that is how you wish to play the game.

Competition is fierce for the books and so they are having to trim their profit margins on the betting side of things. This makes it slightly more easy for us than in the past as we don’t have quite as big a mountain to climb to get beyond their overround, but it is still pretty daunting.

A more preferable option is to use the online betting exchanges to do battle, where instead of the bookmaker’s overround, you have to contend with the commission charge on winning bets.

Whichever you choose doesn’t really matter, the battle is still a hard one and you will need all the help you can find. The upside is that there is plenty of help available online.

You have free tipsters, paid tipsters, stats sites, betting blogs, so much information is available to anyone who is willing to search for it. Time is the key commodity though.

If you have plenty of free time and love working with figures then the challenge of finding good bets is exciting. If you don’t have the luxury of free time then it becomes a chore that you could do without.

Whichever one you are will not determine your level of success, however. What will determine the level of your success is much more basic than that.

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How To Measure Success

For many years, gamblers have been grappling with the problem of making their gambling a success. The word "success" will be different things to different people.

To some it will be how many winners they have, to others how many points have they won, what profit have they made in the year, or what has been their return on investment.

These are all valid terms of success, but none of them address the real problem of making gambling a success.

How many winners have I had?

If I had 100 bets and got 90 winners you would think that was pretty good.

But if I then said that I was backing them at odds of 1.10, it would mean that I have made a loss over those 100 bets.

How many points have I won?

If I had 100 bets and told you I made 20 points you would think that was pretty good.

But if I then said that I was putting 100 points on each bet then that would not be so good, as I would have made virtually nothing.

What profit have I made in the year?

If I said I had made £1,000 you may think that was pretty good.

But if I then said that my bank was £100,000 then I would have only increased it by only 1% over the year.

I could have probably done better by just leaving it alone in the bank - and it would have been safer too.

What's been my return on investment?

If I said my return was 10% you may think that was excellent.

But if I then said that I only had 2 bets in the year for £10 each and my bank was £100,000 you would think that is not good; a virtual nil return.

All of these are good indicators, but they must be taken in the full context of what has happened in the year. You need to consider all the factors to determine if it has been a successful year or not because one factor alone is not enough.

There are plenty of scam sites which try to use one factor alone to declare massive success.

After reading this though, you won't fall for that rubbish!

"300 points profit every month? Oh yeah? Let's talk about the other factors which put that into context..."

How Bookies Set Odds

Bookmakers do an exceptional job of determining the odds for markets in each game of football.

They do this in a number of ways; statistical analysis, programmed algorithms and one other key factor - they decide what the public will want the odds set at.

If they set the odds at such a level, will Joe Public back it?

To a large extent, the odds set will be what the public expect. No matter what odds they set though, no-one can ever be completely right with setting odds on a sports event because there are just too many factors to take into account and this is where we have a little bit of an advantage.

If we can determine our own odds for each market and check it against what the best odds are from all the books, we will be able to see if the odds offered by them are greater than what we have calculated ourselves.

In other words, we will be able to back selections at odds greater than what we think they should be.

This is the concept of value.

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Value Betting

Value is the one key component by which you can measure your success. If every bet you make has value to go with it, then statistically you will always come out in front long-term.

Yes, there will be losing spells which will test your trading mindset, but looking at those by themselves will be taking the whole concept out of context, just as we did earlier when we looked at how we measured success or failure.

  • A value bet is not always a winning bet, but value bets over a year will give you a winning formula.
  • A value bet will not always win you points over a week, but over the year you can be sure that you will win many points.
  • A value bet will not always give you profit, but if you continue with value bets over a year then you will secure enough profit to make your gambling profitable.
  • A value bet will not always give you a good return, but over the year if you continually bet with value then that return you require will be there for you.

Betting with value is the one key factor that will decide your success or failure. If you do it often enough you will succeed, if you take no steps to bet with value then you will fail. That is the unquestioned truth.

How to determine whether a selection has value or not has become the key weapon in our battle with the books.

From Betting to Trading

Trade Your Bets is the sister site to Goal Profits. Over there, we have invested considerable time and money to build a database that covers ten years of data for every team in a huge number of worldwide leagues.

Each team is rated by their long-term performance so that we are able to determine value in a number of markets for each upcoming fixture. This is, without doubt, an essential piece of software that cuts out all the hard work for you and delivers value.

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Rather than bet on the selections, however, we trade them in order to extract even more value. As we all know, this is the key to long-term profit and the more value we can secure, the more profit we will be able to bank over the months and years.

Value is king and Trade Your Bets points the way to success with your football trading.

Steve Brown

About the author

I'm the founder of Goal Profits and creator of our Team Stats research and trading tools.

Since 2011, I have been sharing my football trading experience with Goal Profits members.

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