How does betting work?

If you’re new to betting, you’re probably wondering how everything works. The most obvious place to start is with an explanation of betting odds.

While it may look a little daunting at first, once you’ve mastered how odds work you can easily calculate the probability of an outcome and how much your winnings will be.

We’ve compiled a handy explainer below to give you the full lowdown on how betting works.

What are betting odds and how do they work?

Bookmakers use odds to determine the likelihood of a certain outcome in a sporting or other event. They are typically presented in fractions (3/1) or decimals (3.0).

Betting markets are available on a host of different outcomes. For example, in football, you can place bets on everything from the result, first goalscorer and winning team to how many corners or throw-ins a certain team will have.

You can choose your preferred betting odds display by going into your 'Betting Settings' where you can switch between fractional and decimal. 


Fractional betting odds show potential winnings in relation to your stake. The number on the right hand side represents your stake and the number on the left is your possible winnings.

For example:

If you were placing a bet on a football match between Manchester United and Liverpool, a £/€1 bet on Manchester United at 3/1 odds would result in a £/€4 return. This includes a £/€3 profit and your original £/€1 stake.

When a selection is deemed to be the favourite you will often see fractional odds where the the right hand number is larger than the left hand number (eg. Manchester United are 1/5 to beat Crystal Palace).

This simply means that for every £/€5 you stake you’ll win £/€1.


Decimal betting odds show potential winnings inclusive of your stake. All you need to do is multiply your stake by the odds.

For example:

If you backed Manchester United to beat Liverpool at odds of 4.00 and placed a £/€1 stake, your potential winnings are £/€4.

Other returns include:

  • £/€1 at 10.00 = £/€10 return inclusive of stake
  • £/€5 at 2.50 = £/€12.50 return inclusive of stake
  • £/€10 at 7.00 = £/€70 return inclusive of stake