In a betting exchange, people can bet against each other, not against a sportsbook. There are two bet types in order for this to happen, you can be backing (to win) and laying (to lose). Let me explain this, in a betting exchange you can bet on a team to lose, so if you don’t know who will win the NBA Finals, but you know it won’t be the Miami Heat, then you make the appropriate bet.
In a betting exchange people can set the odds, and in theory you can set any odds you want. However, the bet will be live if it’s be matched by people who wish to bet on the opposite outcome, so absurdly low odds will probably not be matched by anybody. All the bets will be accepted instantly as long as the odds you are setting already have a counter bet.
A betting exchange makes money by charging a commission, which is usually around 5% of the winning bet. This is the reason why betting exchanges are known for having the best odds, although most of the time, they don’t offer promotions like a regular sportsbook would. The most well-known and popular betting exchange in the world is Betfair, which is also the oldest because it was founded in June 2000.
Choosing between a sportsbook and a betting exchange it’s really up to each player. If you like to place parlays and you like free plays and promotions, then a sportsbook is probably the best option for you. However, if you like to make straight bets one at a time, or if you want to bet against a team or a golfer, then you will find better odds at a betting exchange.
Reading sports betting site reviews is the best way to find the latest information on sportsbooks and betting exchanges so you can compare them and choose the one you prefer.