Tags: where to bet
By Ron Raymond on Mar 24, 2011 | In Recommended Sportsbooks
By Sports Handicapper Ron Raymond
March 24, 2011
It’s hard to believe my first sports handicapping website (Phoenixsports.com) was built in 1996 and it’s now 2011 and I’m still in the game! However, the sports betting industry has seen better days and if you’re not re-inventing yourself or taking a different business strategy, you will be left in the dust.
A good friend once told me, “have a dream in life or you will be part of somebody else dream!” How true is that statement? Like many experts in our field, I keep wondering why our industry or the poker industry is not regulated by now and it hit me like an Albert Pujols foul ball! Credit Cards!
I’ve come to the conclusion the only reason why our industry is not regulated by now; society doesn’t want to see bettors rack up their credit cards with gambling debts. Credit Cards are another word for laziness! If there’s one thing people have learned from the credit crisis of 2007 to 2009, it’s too easy to get fast money without having to worry about repaying their debt. Gamblers are the same way, they lose a few games, have the itch to bet another game, it’s 8:30pm at night and the next game goes off a 9:00pm and all they have to do is empty their limit on the next game. Imagine how fast that can get out of hand with people with addictive personalities? Plus, not to mention the repercussion of emptying your credit card on games or poker can have many social problems attached i.e.: divorce, lying, addiction, stealing. Etc…..
They say in dieting “bread” is the devil, in the betting world it seems “credit cards” is the devil.
Fine! So, how do we move forward from here and pick a reputable sportsbook and being responsible. I’ve always told my clients, don’t pick one sportsbook, you should have a least two of them at your disposal. Why should you have two sportsbook accounts? Competitive edge and let the sportsbooks offer you the best offers they can provide. If they really want your business, ask them what can they do for you and what do they have to offer.
Why limit your experience with one sportsbook, when you can compare the value of two of them.
The number one thing you should ask your sportsbook before signing up, what are your depositing methods and what kind of sign up bonus do you provide? I can tell you from experience, you can leave your credit card in your wallet, because the banks have made it a nightmare to fund your account, which brings us to other depositing methods. In order to control your spending habits, the sportsbooks have different limits and depositing methods that have time related experience like going to a western union and drafting a bank wire. If you really want to make a wager, you will take the time to find way to send the money. One of my favorite methods at Bookmaker Sportsbook is instant debit. It’s easy and fast and you’re wagering within minutes. Is that a good thing? Who knows, but it’s a preferred method for me.
Why should I have Two Sportsbooks?
For starters, it’s about line shopping. If you like the New York Yankees at -140 favorite at Bookmaker Sportsbook and -135 at SBG Global, you will take the -135 at SBG Global. You would be surprised how many sportsbooks will have line discrepancies and some Sportsbooks like Bodog will have a 10 cent difference in baseball between other sportsbooks. Plus, if you’re going to wager on baseball, try to find a sportsbook who has a 10 cent line. It’s worth it down the road.
Another thing to consider when shopping for a top online sportsbook, ask them when they released their lines. I’ve seen sportsbook released their lines at 11am for a 1pm game, but the more reputable sportsbooks like Bookmaker will post their lines the day before. In fact, I’ve seen them post their lines at 4pm in the afternoon for the next day games. Plus, if there’s one thing that irritates me when I’m looking to make a wager on a different sport like golf, Tennis or NASCAR, some books will not even post a line on the event.
But, if you do find a reliable sportsbook who post Master Golf odds, you will notice some books will have bettor odds than others. Now, I’ve made money with the “sharper” golf or Kentucky Derby lines, because sportsbooks have the best information at their disposal, so I look at it like they know something I don’t know about.
One of the most important aspects of being a customer at your sportsbook; their customer service! At first, you’re relationship is like a honeymoon, you’re happy to have an account, you’re looking forward on trying their software, but after a year or two, you start seeing their customer service is not as cordial as your other establishment. Make sure they honor their deposit bonus and if they have a loyalty program, make sure they follow up on their word.
Some Sportsbooks take you and your hard earned money for granted. I’m kind of sick seeing some of the sportsbooks go throw the formalities and treating you like another number. Keep in mind, I’ve seen many phony managers, scammers and marketing people treat you like gold at the beginning and then avoid your emails and phone calls as time elapse. However, I have to give credit to sportsbooks who are still in the game after all these years and are trying to make your experience an enjoyable one. If you haven’t seen the Loyalty Program at Bookmaker.com, check it out, worth the price of admission in my view.
Here’s an angle I’ve experience the last 10 years or so, once March Madness is over and Basketball and Hockey are in the semi finals of their sport, you will notice baseball is the only sport in town. Now, baseball is a different cat, not everybody likes to wager on baseball, but I’ve found betting on the ponies can be a nice switch of pace event. You have two kinds of horse racing, thoroughbred racing and harness racing. But, I’ve noticed many of the sportsbooks don’t have every track for Harness racing, so make sure you check to see if they have your local track in their betting software.
It’s now 2011, there’s no reason for the sportsbook to have sluggish websites or when you try to make a wager, have the software hang! I can tell you, it’s a frustrating experience when you’re facing your screen wondering why the site is so slow! It’s one of my pet peeves when making a bet, if I have to wait 5 minutes when I’m down to the wire to make a bet, and it doesn’t go through. It’s enough to force people to find another sportsbook who have reliable software. Plus, it’s even worst if that wager would have won!
How to fund your sportsbook account? Well, I’ve already given you a synopsis on why credit cards are being discouraged, but I’ve written a prior article on how to fund your sportsbook account.
Make sure the Sportsbooks you chose are books that have been in the game a minimum of 10 years. I still see some local guys get an online sportsbook, but they don’t last too long in the game today, that’s why it’s important to stay with a book that has been around a few years. I recommend you read my Top Sportsbook review site to connect with only the top recommended sportsbooks.
Another thing to consider should you be one of the lucky bettors who win on a consistent basis, find out their payout rules. Some sportsbooks will have one free payout a month and then start charging you $50 for the next check if it’s in that 30 day window of your last win. It’s just another thing to consider before opening a new account.
Furthermore, if you’re into today’s tech gadgets, some sportsbooks are mobile friendly and this wagering method allows you to wager on the run. Let’s face it, after you’ve been in the game a few years, you will noticed everything will boil down to “convenience” and “reliability”. I know for myself, I don’t want to be running to western unions every other week to send money and when I win, I want to get paid.
That’s why it’s important to have more than one sportsbook, because you want the sportsbooks to offer you the best promotions.
Recommended Sportsbook Update
If you’re visiting the blog for a little guidance on which online sportsbook to wager with this sports betting season, I’ve updated my recommendation page and you can find the recommended online sportsbook at Phoenixsports.com
Ron Raymond’s Top Online Sportsbook Recommendation List.