Why every football competition has a different betting margin

Why every football competition has a different betting margin

Knowing the betting margin will give you vital information when placing a bet. A quick glance at the odds for today’s football matches learns that, without a calculator, the right betting margin that lies beneath the odds are difficult to retrieve. Analysis by betoptimizr reveals that online bookmakers offer (very) different payout ratios on the various football competitions. How this all works is explained in our review below.

Bookmaker strategies

Bookmakers have several approaches, to make the profit. One of those strategies is offering bets at less attractive odds, in other words increasing the margin for the bookmaker. This margin increase naturally results in a lower margin for you, the player.

On the other hand, bookmakers are in some cases forced to offer attractive odds. This measure is down to nothing more than the economics of competition. Rivalry compels bookmakers to provide better odds in the high profile and thus most popular markets. Examples are English Premier League and the Champions League.

The proof that the betting margin varies per competition

The betoptimizr graph below shows a betting margin comparison between all significant online bookmakers in 5 different European football competitions. The analysis uses the 1×2 bet type that is offered one day before the match as a base. The average payout percentage of the 50 bookmakers are plotted on the graph. Each dot represents one individual bookmaker. Use our free betoptimizr quick scan now if you want to know which dot represents which bookmaker.

european competitions

The graph tells us the following four key facts:

1. Most bookmakers tend to offer more attractive odds on the high profile leagues.


2. Around ten bookmakers offer very attractive odds with payout ratios in the range of 97%-99% for the Premier League.


3. The average payout for the German Bundesliga and Spanish La Liga are in the 94%-96% range for most bookmakers. Two bookmakers offer better odds with an average payout of 98%


4. The payout ratios of the Dutch Eredivisie and the Belgian Eerste Klasse are the lowest, with the majority of the bookmakers offering odds with a mere 92%-94% average payout.

What drives the different odds ratios between the football competitions?

1.     The bigger the competition, the bigger the interest.

In most cases, it is the simple fact that bookmakers are trying to accommodate the interest in high profile football matches. Better value (=attractive odds) keep the players happy.

2.     High profile football matches attract large volumes

In the more significant competitions, there is more money at stake, and more players are betting on the high profile competitions such as the Premier League or La Liga. Due to these larger volumes, bookmakers can still make profits even with the lower margins.

3.     High volume means lower risk for bookmakers

A high amount of betting activity means an online bookmaker runs a more moderate risk. Only because the bookmaker can spread the risks better with high volume on the various outcomes of the bets.

Handig om te weten …

De markt geeft meestal aan dat de gemiddelde uitbetaling van een bepaalde bookmaker een bepaald vast percentage is, bijvoorbeeld 95%. Deze stelling is in bijna alle gevallen niet waar. Diezelfde 95% bookmaker had een uitbetaling van 98% kunnen aanbieden voor weddenschappen op de Premier League en slechts 92% voor een andere voetbalcompetitie. Het is daarom meer dan de moeite waard om je gokgedrag te toetsen aan de beschikbare odds. Onze gratis betoptimizr tool doet precies dat.

Effect on the low profile football competitions

It is safe to say that online bookmakers - on average - target the high profile competitions such as the Premier League, Bundesliga and La Liga to offer the best value to the players. Does this imply that you should not bet on the “smaller” competitions like Eredivisie, Portuguese Primeira Liga or Eerste Klasse? No, not necessarily. But for these football competitions, the selection of the right bookmaker becomes much more critical. There are a few bookmakers around that offer good value on these lower competitions as the betoptimizr graph above shows.

Conclusion: average payouts differ significantly per bookmaker and per competition.

If a bookmaker offers attractive odds for one competition, it does not necessarily imply that this is the case for all other leagues. Differences in the average payout between the online bookmakers can be quite high: in some cases even as high as a staggering 5% difference!!

Careful analysis is required if you are betting in different competitions. It could well be the case that you opt for Bookmaker A for the Premier League, but that you need to select bookmaker B for another football competition.

Doe je eigen onderzoek …

Als je zelf onderzoek wilt doen, kun je onze gratis betoptimizr tool gebruiken om binnen 20 seconden te zien welke besparing je kunt realiseren op je voetbalweddenschappen door over te stappen naar de online bookmaker met de hoogste uitbetaling. Onze  gratis tool is and 100% 0nafhankelijk.