Sports betting strategies and tips for beginners

sports betting tips

Sports betting for beginners can be a challenge as there is so much to learn. If you search for sports betting tips online, you will find hundreds of articles. The problem is these articles share basic information about how to bet and where to wager. There might be information available for you on advance betting techniques and systems, however, you will seldom find guidance on how you can go from the beginning point all the way to using advanced techniques for betting.

With this article, BetJoe is trying to fill this information gap. We have listed some simple sports betting strategies that anyone can use. Based on your current knowledge of teams and games, these sports betting tips can help you eventually produce profitable strategies.

Start with Small Bets

You will take a long time to learn how to beat the sports book. Some gamblers learn sports betting strategies faster than others, but still there remains a learning curve for even the best sports bettors. The first thing you need to learn is to how to maintain your bankroll as you have limited amount of money you can use to bet on sports. Betting too much amount per contest is not advisable.

We have known sports bettors who started with making $5 bets then gradually moved to $11 bets before they can start making wagers with significant amount. Remember that it will take years and years, before you get to the point where you are actually good at placing profitable bets.

There are so many different strategies to try. You will be surprised to know how hard it is to break it even when you are just getting started with sports betting online. Over time, you will evolve into understanding various kinds of sports betting strategies and will get good at it. It is then when you start making profits.

When you are starting with sports betting have to decide on your bankroll. Set aside money you can easily risk and do not use any other money than your bankroll for sports betting. Divide your bankroll amount by hundred and do not make any bigger bets then this amount until you learn more. So, if you have $1000, then don’t make any bet for more than $10. This is how you learn to manage your bankroll.

We recommend this because as a beginner in sports betting you are going to make a mistake. Making small amount wagers will ensure that you do not lose too much money. This also ensures that you are able to place plenty of bets before you run out of money. This way you can be in the game for a long and come up with a winning system.

Focus on a small area

another common mistake that most sports bettors make is to bet on their favourite teams or bet on big games like the Super Bowl. Problem with betting on big games is that, as a beginner you are not well aware of such tournaments.

We understand you have an innate desire to bet on everything and anything when you’re getting started. However, a wiser strategy is to focus on just one sport to start. Forget about NFL, MLB, NBA or NCAA games and try to bet on small games.

Experts suggest that sports betting for beginners get easier if the focus on one smaller part of the sport. So next time instead of focusing on the NFL, just bet on games in the AFC East or focus on one conference in NCAA football.

When you focus on one small area you get the opportunity to build a base of knowledge that helps you pick winners. Profitable sports bettors have a strong knowledge of teams and players they bet on. Once you reach a point where you gather and analyse more data than the people who are setting the lines, you are on a path to consistent profits.

Our second sports betting tip for you is to specialize to get started. You might be interested in sports betting because of your love for a particular sport but you also need to work on improving your chances of winning.

Make moneyline wagers

For almost every sporting event there exist two different lines. Against the spread bet is one of the lines that you should take interest in. This is the point spread bet where one team gets points and the other team gives points.

The other more common betting line is a moneyline. It is the simplest of the wagers where you just have to pick the team that wins the game to win the bet. In moneyline bets, the amount you wager is usually different than what you put in against the spread wagers.

Against the spread bets usually cost you 11 to 10 dollars. A moneyline wager is little different as you have to put a little extra money that is counted as vig, a commission charged by the sportsbooks on bets you make. This is how online sportsbooks make profit.

Let’s understand this with an example. In moneyline wagers the vig is harder to see because it is presented in a different way. Suppose odds are like this:

NEBRASKA          +150

PENN STATE       -170

Then this example the team with a plus sign is the one which is underdog. If you wager $100 on Nebraska, then +150 indicates that you win back the $100 wager as well as a profit of $150.  However, the favorites here, Penn State has a minus sign which implies that in order to win $100 you have to wager an amount of $170.

It can be difficult to pick winner against the spread in sports betting. Also, the sportsbooks are extremely good at setting lines that end up close to the final score, this is why it can be very challenging to figure out the winner.

But with moneyline, it is much easier to pick a winning team as it about picking the winner outright. This is why although it is costs more to pick the favorite in moneyline, but its still easier to pick a winner.

Try to not bet on your favourite team 

It is highly likely that your first-ever bet on a sporting event might have involved your favourite team. Many gamblers continue to back their favourite teams because they love them and want to make some money while supporting their team.

Technically there is nothing wrong with this approach, however, the problem arises when you become biased and ignore the numbers when they are stacked against your favourite team. If you are not able to see the reality as it is and always root for your favourite team you are going to lose money big-time.

This is why it is much easier to stop betting on games that involve your favourite team instead of trying been unbiased. You can still root for your favourite team do not involve your bankroll in the process unless you want to lose your hard-earned money.

Learn the key positions in a game

In some sports, certain positions are more important than others. If you want to bet on a certain team or player it is important that you spend time evaluating players at those positions in order to improve your chances of winning.

If you are betting on baseball, then you have to study the starting pitchers as they are the most important players in any team. However, in recent years, the bullpen has been gaining more importance as starting pitchers are throwing fewer innings.

In football, the most important position remains the quarterback. No other positions can come closer to the importance of quarterback as it decides which team has the most stable defence.

Basketball remains one of the very few sports where positions are not as important for sports gambling. Important leagues like the NBA and the NCAA remain star-driven sports where the best players are of importance irrespective of where they play.

Hockey and soccer are somewhat like the NBA as in the sports as well the most important players control the games regardless of their position.

If you want to do a good job handicapping any game then you must evaluate the key positions and the players at these positions.

Avoid dangerous sports

Seldom sports bettors think about the possibility of a game been fixed but it happens sometimes. Some sports are easier to fix than others and if you are not aware of the possibility you can end up losing money.

Individual games like tennis and golf are the easiest to fix as only one person is needed to alter the outcome in a way that will profit the fixers. Comparatively team sports are more difficult to fix but basketball remains a game with a long history of being fixed. NBA fixing scandals are not hidden from anyone. This is why you should keep away from dangerous games if you can.

Sports betting must be business for you 

If you want to really succeed as a sports bettor, then you need to start treating it like a business instead of a hobby. As for running any successful business, you need to strategise a business plan the same holds for sports betting. You need to manage your budget, track the results, learn from mistakes and try to make profitable decisions backed with solid information and research.

All the profitable sports bettors share these traits. They have a strong sense of self-discipline when it comes to bankroll management and they rely more on research than hobbyists. If you want to become a successful sports bettor you have to nurture these characteristics.


For beginners sports betting can be hard and making a profit can be tough. However, with the sports betting tips shared above you will help you better understand how to bet and manage bankroll. Properly managing and dividing your bankroll allows you to be in the game for longer and help you track your decisions and results.

You have to keep your focus on specializing in one area, learn about bias and stop betting on your favorite teams. Once you have learned the basics, continue learning and improving as with consistent improvement you will turn profitable.