The smart bettors don’t just place a bet. Rather, they first look for ways to maximize the money they can win or preserve their bankroll. There are so many ways you can also do this, but one of the most effective ones is line shopping. This strategy involves looking around with an aim to secure the best possible odds for your wager.
It may sound like a minor detail, but even the smallest of odds margins can make huge differences over the long term. If you are new to betting or simply want to maximize your winnings, we’ll show you several ways to find the best NFL betting lines and odds.
Why Does Odds & Line Shopping Matter?
Line shopping is based on the fact that different sportsbooks usually offer different odds and lines. They may be similar, but they usually have some minor differences. This is because the various sportsbooks create their odds differently, and they also adjust them based on how people are betting to minimize their risk. This creates a chance to find more value when placing a bet.
For example, in a game between the Seahawks and Bengals, sportsbook X can have moneyline odds of -150 on the Bengals. Sportsbook Y can also offer the bet but with odds of -145 on Bengals. This means that if you place a wager of $150 on Bengals using bookie X, you stand to win $100. But if you place the same wager on bookie Y, you’ll win $103.45.
This might seem like a small difference, but now let’s compound it over the season. If you place 100 wagers with the same margin on sportsbook X and win 70% of your bets, your total winnings will be $7000. On sportsbook Y, this would be $7,241.5. The difference is $241.5, which is quite a significant sum in bankroll management.
How to do NFL Line Shopping
Use Multiple Sportsbooks
The basis of NFL line shopping is having multiple sportsbooks. This is because it lets you diversify your options and therefore makes it possible to shop for the best lines and odds. However, having multiple sportsbooks doesn’t mean that you ignore the aspect of carefully choosing the sportsbook. Ensure you evaluate several of them using factors such as their licensing and registration, reliability, payment options, bonuses and promotions, and online reviews. You can then choose a few and open accounts.
Line shopping is all about comparison. This means that when you have finished analyzing a bet you want to place, you then need to compare the odds and lines offered by different bookies. You can do so the manual way by checking among your three or four sportsbooks. Alternatively, you can use an odds comparison site or app. There are lots of them out there, but confirm that the site provides actual odds, not boosted odds, before using it for future comparisons.
Consider Line Movement
As a game approaches, odds usually move quickly. This is because there may be news regarding the available squad, and sportsbooks also adjust their odds based on where most people are betting. These changes are even more significant when it’s a huge game.
In tough games that you want to wager on, you can wait for the lines to start moving as the game nears. You can then take advantage of the odds changes to get the best value for your bet. Ensure that you lock in your bet when you believe that the odds are most favorable.
Calculate Expected Value
To ensure that you get the best deal, you can also calculate the expected value for every bet. By doing this, you will get the actual money that you will save or add to your winnings. This will help you prioritize line shopping during your bets and give you a competitive edge as a sports bettor.