Bet Boost and Odds Boost; How Much Extra Do You Get?
When it comes to bookmakers, they all want one thing: your business. As a result, they’ll come up with all sorts of offers and promotions to win said business, trying to outdo each other where they can. When a big race like the Grand National or the Cheltenham Gold Cup comes around, for example, some bookies will offer you a larger payout on the Places part of an Each-Way bet, whilst others will promise to pay on more places than usual.
They might only seem like small tweaks to the normal offers, but they’re enough to be the difference between some people joining a bookmaker’s site and some not.
Another seemingly small tweak that can actually make a big difference is when a bookie like Ladbrokes or William Hill offers to boost the odds of your selection, meaning that you get a slightly improved payout. How improved it actually is is the key question, of course, with neither bookmaker likely to give you odds that will put them out of business any time soon.
It’s also worth considering whether there are particular bet types that are more sensible to use the boost offers on; is it better to try it with bets with shorter odds or longer ones, for example? Bookmakers want your business, but are these boosts a good way to get it?
How Bet Boosts Work
The first thing worth discussing here is how, exactly, these offers work. In essence, the idea behind the offer is that you make a selection, add it to your betting slip and the click a button that ‘boosts’ your odds, improving them slightly over what they were before.
The improvement isn’t always huge, but they will be better than the original odds you were looking at and the bottom line of that is that you’ll see more money in your account if you win.
If you take out an odds boost then you’ll also find that the amount of money that you’re allowed to bet will be limited, so it’s worth thinking about how much you were planning on betting.
Looking at it in very simplistic terms, if you were planning to bet £200 on a bet with odds of 3/1 then the returns would be higher (£600) than if you take an odds boost to 4/1 but are only allowed to bet £50 (£200). Obviously if you only tend to place bets with small stakes then a limit in how much you’re able to bet won’t really make much difference and you should take the boost.
Even if you do place bigger bets you can at least boost the odds on the bet up to the stake limit and if you are a VIP player you will often be given higher boost limits in any case.
A boosting to the odds on offer isn’t always available on all markets. That means that if you weren’t planning on betting on a horse race, for example, then it’s not all that much use to you if the boosted odds offer is only available on the horses.
You’ll normally be presented with the available markets when you login to your account, or you’ll see it as an option on your betting slip when you go to place the bet and you can select it from there. Different companies treat their offers differently too, so bear that in mind.
Two Real Odds Boost Examples
The best way to explore whether or not these promotions are worthwhile is to have a look at some real life examples of how they work in practice. In order to do that we’ll look at the original price from Ladbrokes and William Hill, then the boosted price from both of them as well as the odds offered by a third bookmaker.
In all instances we’re looking at horse racing, simply because that’s the only market on which William Hill offer their Bet Boost promotion at the time of writing which makes it easier. We’ll look at 10 different races, taking on a range of odds in order to see if there’s any worth in looking at the offer for one type of bet over another.
What The Results Tells Us
|Race Number||William Hill Odds||William Hill Boosted||Ladbrokes Odds||Ladbrokes Boosted||3rd Party Odds|
What can we learn from the above table? The first thing that jumps out is that you can improve your odds in a lot of cases simply by shopping around.
Looking at three different, entirely unaffiliated bookmakers you can see that the odds that they offer are sufficiently different to mean that a quick bit of looking at what different bookies are offering can see your odds improve even before you use a bet boost facility.
When you do boost your bet, though, you’re getting far more in terms of a boost to your odds when you’re betting on something that already had quite long odds to begin with. That makes complete sense, of course, given the fact that the bookmaker obviously didn’t think it had much of a chance of winning if it had such long odds in the first place. What difference does it make to a bookie if they’re offering you odds of 40/1 or 50/1, given either way they think it’s got no chance of winning the race?
When it comes to the shorter odds, however, the boosts are a lot less impressive. William Hill moving from 2/1 to 2.15/1 on the 5th horse on the list is a difference of £3 on a bet with a £20 stake. Obviously those that follow the doctrine of ‘look after the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves’ will be pleased enough with a £3 boost on a £20 bet, but it’s not exactly the sort of money that means that you’ll be cursing yourself if you don’t remember to click the boost button.
When To Use Boosted Odds For Your Bets
Believe it or not, there is actually a degree of tactical thinking needed to take proper advantage of bet boost offers. A lot of bookmakers respond to each other, so they are keen to avoid showing their hand unless it can’t be avoided. For that reason the time you place a bet is also critical, odds move in responce to bets placed and this means sometimes the initial odds will be better ante-post, other times minutes before the race. If you use a boost when the odds shift to the more generous side of the scale it will be of course more valuable.
That’s not to say that you’ll be able to rake it in if you can only resist looking until five minutes before the race, of course. But you might find that a boost that was to 2.15/1 at 11 o’clock in the morning has moved to 3/1 just before the race is about to get under way. It’s not just about bookmakers avoiding showing their hand before anyone else, it’s also about them trying to figure out the market. If they get it wrong then they could over-price or under-price their offering, especially when the price has been boosted.
Choose Your Bets Before Looking For A Boost
The key, of course, is to pick your bets before you look to see what the odds are and what the boost is that the various bookmakers are offering you. When all is said and done, if you have done your research and know what horse or market it is that you want to bet on then the boosted odds offered by bookies that have such promotions is a nice little bonus rather than something you’re allowing to dictate your entire betting strategy. If you weren’t planning on placing the bet originally then what good is a really excellent boost to the odds?
The final thing worth mentioning in terms of when the best time to place your bets is comes down to making sure that you’ve searched the markets. A boost from 25/1 to 30/1 from Bookie A might look great on paper, but it’s a bit rubbish if Bookie B was offering 35/1 without a boost and you just never checked their market.
As you can tell from the table above, going to the right bookmaker in the first place will not only give you better odds but also increase the amount the odds are boosted if they offer that promotion. It’s boring and painstaking to shop around, but it can make a major difference for those that bet regularly.
Check The Terms And Conditions
Another key facet to your betting strategy when it comes to taking bookmakers up on their offers is to make sure that you check the small print. Again, this can be boring and laborious but it can also save you a heap of anger and embarrassment after the fact if you pick up on something that you didn’t realise before.
The key term is whether there is a maximum stake you can place boosted bets with. Some bookies might well say that you can get the first X amount of your bet boosted and the rest of the stake will be paid out at the rate of the normal odds, but others might be strict in only allowing a bet with a given stake to be placed. Knowing that can also help you figure out whether or not to bet with one bookmaker over another. After all, placing a £40 bet in which the first £20 will be on boosted odds and the second £20 is on the normal odds is better than placing a £20 bet on boosted odds alone.
There are loads of things that you need to bear in mind when placing a bet with enhanced or boosted odds, including whether or not it’s only for the Win part of a bet or if you’ll also have your enhanced odds taken into account if you’ve placed an Each-Way wager. You should also know that your odds will likely be effected if Rule 4 kicks in because of a non-runner, so don’t think that just because you’ve taken advantage of an offer that you’ll be exempt on that front.
Ultimately, though, as long as you’ve done your research then a bet boost style offer should be a bit of fun, giving you a larger potential win that if you didn’t have the offer open to you. Do your research before placing you bet, see if you can get a boost when you place your stake and go from there.