Chris Hardy brings years of experience to Wetten.com, thanks to his strong background in journalism and online writing. Chris' career began nearly 20 years ago when he was hired to work for his local paper; he then made the move to web writing when he and his wife moved to the USA to be closer to family in 2017. This location change led Chris to develop a particular passion in US sports such as basketball and NFL (he remains a beleaguered Miami Dolphins fan and is sure their turnaround season will happen... one day) and he utilises his all-encompassing knowledge of US sports, along with soccer, when writing for Wetten.
Sports betting odds explained
‘What do betting odds mean?’ is a question that you will need to get answered if you have any hope of making any money from your sports bets. Thankfully, we are here to show you how betting odds are calculated and to have betting odds explained in a simple way that anybody can easily understand.
If you want to know the answer to the question of ‘What do betting odds means?’, it’s essential to realise that odds reflect the probability of a particular event happening.
For the toss of a coin, you’d know that there would be a 50% of there being heads, and 50% chance of getting tails. The same could apply to your sports bets where a bookmaker would predict that there would be a 60% of Rafael Nadal winning the final of the Australian Open, while his opponent Novak Djokovic would have a 40% chance.
Things get a little more complicated when you get more potential outcomes. For example, a bookmaker might look at an Ashes cricket match and give Australia a 40% chance of winning, England a 30% chance of winning, and there being a 30% chance of a draw.
Obviously the more competitors that you get, the more tricky it becomes to know how to calculate betting odds. This is particularly true as betting odds won’t just tell you how likely something is to happen, but they can also indicate how much you’d win should you manage to win your bet. So keep reading to get the answer to the question of ‘What do betting odds mean?’ explained even further.
What do betting odds mean in fractional and decimal formats?
It’s probably easier to have betting odds explained through some concrete examples. After all, you will know that the best betting sites in Australia will sometimes display their odds in different formats.
Most Australians will probably find it easiest to understand decimal odds, and it’s pretty simple to have decimal betting odds explained. Here you’ll see a single decimal figure that shows how likely something is to happen.
The lower the number, the more likely it is to happen, while higher numbers are less likely but you’ll stand to make more money. For example, if you looked at the betting odds for the winner of the next Cricket World Cup, you might find that favourites India had odds of 3.00 whereas outsiders like Sri Lanka had odds of 20.00.
It’s easy to calculate your returns from decimal odds. Just multiply the odds by your betting stake and take away the stake to see what winnings you’d make.
So, if you see decimal odds that say that South Sydney Rabbitohs have odds of 2.50 of winning their next NRL game, it would mean that you could put down a $10 bet, and stand to make $15 in profits should you win your bet.
The fraction will represent the amount of profits you’d make as the first number in the fraction, and the size of your betting stake as the second number.
So, if you saw odds of 4/1 for Collingwood to win the next AFL premiership, it would mean that you’d get $40 profits from a betting stake of $10. Whereas, if you saw odds of 1/4 for Geelong to win the next AFL Premiership, it would mean that for every $4 that you bet, you’d make just $1 in profits.
So far we’ve tried to answer the question of ‘What do betting odds mean?’ in terms of fractional odds and decimal odds. However, there are other varieties such as the American odds format, as well as Hong Kong, Indonesian and even Malaysian odds formats.
It’s not hugely important to know all of the different odds formats, as all decent betting sites will allow you to change the odds formats to a way that works for you. However, it’s worth noting that decimal odds are more common if you were to go to a betting exchange in Australia.
The main thing to remember when you are looking at how betting odds are calculated is that they are the bookmaker’s way of telling you how likely something is to happen. It’s therefore your job to try and make a more accurate prediction than the bookmaker.
Making such predictions can be easier for some sporting events than others, and 1×2 betting markets are a good way to begin. Be sure to get the answer to the question of ‘What is 1×2 betting?’ first, and then you’ll start to get a good idea of how to calculate betting odds.
Why having betting odds explained is so important
We hope that we’ve answered your question of ‘What do betting odds mean?’ Ultimately, it should help you work out the difference between a good bet and a bad one. Even if you’re trying to implement the best strategy for no risk matched betting Australia has at the moment, you’ll need to know how odds work.
Understanding how betting odds are calculated is just as important as knowing the answer to the question of ‘Is online gambling legal in Australia?’ While sports betting is legal, only those licensed betting sites are going to calculate odds in a way that’s fair and transparent.
Bookmakers will try and keep the odds in their favour, but you should always have a decent chance of winning your bets. If you feel that a bookmaker has been unfair in the way that they’ve formulated the odds, you can simply check the best advice for making bookmaker complaints Australia has to offer.
But if you know how to calculate betting odds, you’ll be in a much better place of spotting when some odds are simply too good to miss out on. So not only will you need to know the answer to the question of ‘How does cash out betting work?’ to maximise your bets, but having a good understanding of odds is also an essential part of making profits from your sports bets.