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What is a Bookmaker's Margin?

The bookmaker's margin is the element that allows them to earn money by organizing betting. If you thought so far that the bookmaker is making money on the lost bets of individual players, then you were wrong. To make bookmakers profitable, they must charge players with a certain kind of commission, i.e. fees for placing a bet. This fee is the bookmaker's margin, the constant and primary source of the bookmaker's income. The more bets players place the greater the bookmaker's income. Margin has a direct impact on the amount of the offered odds. The higher the margin, the lower the odds, and unfortunately, the lower the winnings ultimately go to the player, because the value of the payout is also reduced. It is worth knowing all these factors and look for the most attractive odds in the first place.

A bookmaker's margin can vary widely, ranging from around 2% to over a dozen percent in less popular event markets. Its amount depends on many factors. The most important is certainly the type of sports discipline, league rank, the prestige of the event, the number of possible bet results, the type of market (e.g. 1X2, handicap, under/over ), whether the bet belongs to the pre-match or live offer, and whether it is placed on a single, accumulative or system coupon. The general rule is that the high popularity of the event promotes a low margin, i.e. the most attractive matches that arouse the interest of many players, are likely to have a lower margin. Also, the bookmaker's margin increases as the number of possible outcomes of a match increases. In the case of the type of bookmaker's offer, a lower margin is imposed on live bets due to their growing popularity. Live betting can evoke great emotions, and if we compare the sums of stakes placed on the same match from the pre-match and live offer, it often turns out that the latter generated many times more turnover.

The bookmaker's margin is always lower on a straight bet than on an accumulator and this is due to the way the coupon price is calculated. While the total price of the AKO coupon is equal to the product of the odds of the individual bets placed on it, the margin of the AKO coupon is the product of the margins imposed on these bets. It should be remembered that individual bookmakers have their own strategies regarding the amount of margin they impose.

For players, the margin is the constant fee but they can look for the most competitive offers. By placing low-margin bets, we increase our payout and simply pay less for the bookmaker’s service. Of course, it would be inconvenient to calculate the bookmaker's margin every time but on a daily basis, it is enough to simply compare the exchange rate offers, selecting the most attractive ones. However, it is worth knowing which bookmaker has the lowest margin and for what types of betting. Sometimes it may even turn out that we bet the same result at the same bookmaker at a much better rate, by selecting the appropriate option.

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