A value bet is a bet where the probability of a given outcome is greater than the bookmaker’s odds reflect. Simply put, when value betting you will be placing bets that have a larger chance of winning than implied by the bookmaker’s odds. This means you will have an edge over the bookmaker in the long run.

What do I need to start?

How does it work?

Check out the full manual to learn the interface and to get more in-depth explanations.

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Value betting with the example of a coin toss

When tossing a coin there can only be two outcomes; heads or tails. We know that the chances of the coin to land on either heads or tails are 50% each. This equals an odds of 2.00 for either outcome.

To calculate odds we use this formula: Odds = 1/probability in decimals. In this case, this is 1/0.5= 2.00

Now imagine you were offered odds of 2.10 on Heads and odds of 2.00 on Tails from two different bookmakers. What would you bet on?

Since the actual probability of the two outcomes is the same you should, of course, bet on the higher odds.

The odds of 2.10 is higher than what the underlying probability suggests, creating a value bet. The bigger the difference, the more profitable the value bet will be.

How to detect value bets

Finding value when sports betting is not as easy as detecting value in a coin toss. In sports, we cannot know the exact probability of a given match.

However, some bookmakers have proven that they are extremely good at determining odds that reflect the actual probability of an outcome. These are often referred to as “sharp” bookmakers, or “sharps”. Some sharps are better than others in certain sports as well. By evaluating these sharp bookmaker’s odds, taking betting bias and market efficiency into account, our servers can determine the “true odds” for any given match. This means that we also know when other bookmakers’ odds are off and where a positive expected value occurs.

Value betting FAQ

Value betting situations in sports can occur when new information enters the market. For instance, if the line-up changes or if a key player gets injured. The sharp bookmakers automatically adjust the odds for that game according to this new information.

Other bookmakers will follow, but it could take minutes or even hours before they adjust their odds according to the market changes. These bookmakers will still show odds that doesn’t reflect the actual probability of the outcome.

Some bookmakers also set higher odds because of market reasons, or well-known betting biases like customers overvaluing long shots and winning streaks.

As a result of this, there will always be inconsistencies in the odds offered by the bookmakers. This means there will always be plenty of value betting situations for you to profit from.

No. This is a common misconception, and it may sound counter-intuitive at first.

We don’t always bet on the most likely outcome – we bet on outcomes that have a better chance of happening than the odds imply.

The average value bet odds for our members is around 2.00. But even if you bet on 3.00 odds, you will profit in the long run if you have an edge. It would just result in a higher profit variance, and (on average) take longer to make the same profit as if betting on 2.00 odds.

In our earlier example with the coin toss, the expected value is 5%. It’s calculated as:

(Odds / true odds) -1

(2.10 / 2.0) – 1 = 0.05

Note that this is a trivial example, and our service also takes into account:

  • The margin of the bookmaker, also known as the “juice”.
  • Betting bias. Most bookmakers don’t balance their odds perfectly, they adjust their odds to players betting bias and the market.
  • Market efficiency. A newly open market can offer a lot of value, but the true odds are also more unreliable.
  • A proven staking strategy, the Kelly criterion.
  • Several sources for the probabilities (true odds), that are proven over time to be profitable.

You can double your money in 3 months! That’s the average result of our members. Monthly ROI (investment growth) is over 30% and there is a proven yield of over 3% (profit per bet). See updated results from our value betting users.

Expected Value (EV) and Variance

It’s important to see value betting as a long term way to profit where the number of bets plays an important role. It’s all about volume. You need to place as many bets as your time and bankroll allow. The number of bets required to reach statistical significance is much higher than what most people think intuitively. You will have to place a couple of thousand bets before you will know with a great deal of certainty. Also, to maximise your profit, make sure that you avoid betting bias in value betting.

Variance will have a large impact on your results if you have a small sample size of bets. But with a large number of value bets, your results will always move towards it’s expected value over time. Learn all about expected value and variance.

Expected Value (EV) and Variance

You have to be prepared for downswings since you only bet on a single odds. Meaning you can lose since you do not cover all the possible outcomes (like you do when arbitrage betting). But you will profit in the long run.

Value betting differs in a number of ways compared to sports arbitrage betting. Check out the differences between value betting and arbitrage betting.

Place value bets on all your devices - platform independant

Want to learn more about value betting?

Get a head start by reading our best value betting tips for beginners. Remember, when value betting you have the upper hand on the bookmaker. But you have to build confidence in the value betting process and put trust in making money long term.

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Hanna from RebelBetting

Author: Hanna Falkdal, Chief Commercial Officer

Hanna works with building relations. And boy does she love it!  She loves forging strong partnerships with businesses and creating genuine relationships with customers. Making sure everyone is as happy as can be is always her top priority, as well as educating them on how to maximise their sports betting profits. She has graduated as a Journalist.