If you're looking to grow your sports betting winnings, you're the envy of sports bettors everywhere. Ending a season with a net profit of any kind is something to celebrate. Having a pool of money you can describe as "sports betting winnings" is a big deal. Congratulations.
But if it's not enough and you want to bring home more money at the end of every month, you're probably going to have to take some drastic measures.
Here are tips to help successful sports bettors earn even more money every month from the sportsbook.
The quickest way to win a big payout in sports betting is to land a big parlay payout. An eight-team parlay pays 150:1 at most books – that's a $15,000 payday on a $100 outlay.
But eight team parlays are impossible to hit, right? You could increase your winnings by a couple grand a month by winning a five-leg parlay. At a typical payout of 20:1, a $100 five-team parlay ticket is worth $2,000. Winning one of these every month is the quickest way to increase your profits by a couple grand – but it's probably not the easiest.
Sportsbooks earn big profits on parlay tickets. How do they do it? Pay outs are lower than the actual odds of winning. The actual odds against hitting a five-team parlay are 31:1, but if you hit that parlay, you get paid out at 20:1. That gives the house a built-in advantage of 34.75% against you.
For the record, this huge edge is also why parlays are considered sucker bets. Only one casino game has an edge that high – keno, the worst game on the floor. Since hitting a five-team parlay is pretty unlikely, it might be best to stick to a simple two or three-leg ticket.
Standard two-team parlays pay out at 2.6:1 and the true odds are 3:1 against. That gives the book a 10% edge, which is much more tenable than 34 or 35%. At 2.6:1, you'd have to wager $770 in order to use this wager to swell your bankroll by two grand each month. That's a big bite, and within the limits of all the online books I'm familiar with. But it's a huge risk to take. You'd better be pretty darn sure of those two legs you're parlaying.
You could also meet your goal of $2,000 in additional winnings per month by identifying one really strong play each month and betting enough to clear a couple grand. Risking $2,200 on a single bet sounds crazy – but then again, increasing your winnings by $24,000 in a single year IS crazy. You're going to have to zig where others zag – and if you do your research, it's not hard to identify one super-strong pick per month.
Let's use the NFL as an example. We will say San Francisco is hosting Green Bay in October. You know the Packers are great on grass (40-18 ATS in games on grass fields), great in October (7-1 ATS in October the last three seasons), and they perform well from the favorite position. The line is GB -7.5, and public opinion is so strong in the Packers' favor that the book is offering reduced juice on the low-performing 49ers. This is pretty clearly a good time to make your $2,200 bet. Green Bay beats the spread 70% of the time as away favorites in the Aaron Rodgers era.
Big potential downside here – San Francisco shows up to play, Rodgers hurts his arm, and the Packers limp back to Green Bay with a W by a field goal. You're out a huge investment. But remember – swelling your bankroll by two grand per month is no easy task. You're going to have to take some risks. Just try to go all-in on less risky situations.
Assuming you're already making a profit, increasing your bets should increase your profit. Let's say, for simplicity's sake, that you've been placing $100 wagers and bringing in $1,000 a month. If you continue at that win rate, but bet $300 per game, your new take will be $3,000 a month. If you're bringing in $10,000 a month, you'd only have to increase your bets by 1/5th in order to bring in that extra couple of grand.
I understand that these are simplistic figures. I'm just using them to prove a point. There's no secret to increasing your profits as a sports bettor. If you've got a profitable strategy, there's no reason you shouldn't be staking more per game. The trick is having the bankroll to support the larger wagers. Tripling your bets from $100 to $300 a piece isn't cheap, especially if those $100 wagers were already a bit of a stretch on your budget.
By the same token, you could keep making the same wagers of the same size and increase your monthly take by simply winning more bets. Increasing your win rate from 53% to 63% will create a significant difference in your bottom line. Even an increase of one or two percentage points could get you to the new level of profit you're after.
So how do you do it?
Become a better researcher – If you want to win more NBA wagers, you need to base your picks on more than just points in the paint and turnover percentage. Winning more MLB bets means going deeper than the talking-heads analysis on ESPN. To find value against the Vegas handicappers, you'll have to dig in and learn more about the sports you bet on.
Cherry-pick your bets – When your goal is to increase your raw winning percentage, you're better off sticking to bets that are as close to a sure-thing as you can find. This might mean avoiding some bets that you'd normally place. Stick to high-advantage wagers and your win percentage will increase. Think of it this way – if you place 8 well-researched bets and win 7 of them your winning rate is better than placing 15 wagers and only winning 8.
Bet against the public – You won't bet against the public every time, but you need to get comfortable with it. Sportsbooks reduce their risk by moving a line in response to heavy public action. If you're looking for high-percentage wagers to increase your win rate, you'll need to go against all that public money. This isn't to say that all wagers against public opinion will pay off – this is where experience and research will help you turn a negative expectation into a positive one.
Want to add $2,000 a month to your bankroll? Sell 2,000 subscriptions to your own tout service at $1 a month and you'll swell your wallet without changing your tactics at all.
We'd like to think that the tout services we trust for our picks are made up of sports and handicapping experts who thoughtfully consider the week's games before making their selection. I'm not sure that's true. These days, I refuse to pay for picks, though I'll admit to using tout services early in my sports betting career. I just don't think any tout service can make better selections than I can.
So that got me thinking. What's stopping me from selling my own picks? These days, it's easier to set up a little business online than it is to open a bank account. Thanks to PayPal and other convenient online payment services, taking money from strangers on the Internet is just as easy. All I have to do is set up an email blast system, sell subscriptions to my service, and email my picks out to my subscribers once or twice a week. The hard part would be finding enough subscribers, not making the picks.
Some of the advice above flies in the face of conventional sports betting strategy. But remember – trying to increase your monthly winnings by two thousand bucks a month is pretty unconventional. Obviously, you shouldn't go around betting hundreds of dollars on a single game if you can barely pay rent or if you don't have some significant insight into the outcome.
But if you take the advice above with the right-sized grain of salt, you could easily increase your winnings. It requires patience, a little bit of luck, and a pretty big bankroll, but growing sports betting winnings by $2,000 is not inconceivable.