EV+ / Beating the Closing Line
First and foremost, if you want to make profit betting, you will need EV+ (positive expected value) bets. What does that mean? You need to find mispriced events and bet them.
Now, most bettors are aware of that, so that is not a secret. However, what most people don’t know is that your actual win/loss record will tell you little about whether your bets identified mispricings on the market or you were just lucky.
The one metric that will take five you that information is the closing line. The closing line is the price of an outcome just before the game starts, so it is the most efficient price there is since it incorporates the most information (all information about a game has become available as the game has started). This is founded on the efficient market theory in finance and has been proven to work in betting too.
That means, if your (or anyone’s) bets are beating the closing line, those are good bets. Beating the closing line means the odds of your bet at the time of the beginning of the event are lower than the odds you have bet on.
So your main task should be finding EV+ bets or in other words, bets that beat the closing line.
There are various ways of finding bets that beat the closing line – paying to a tipster (spoiler alert: 99% of them suck) or developing a statistical model (requires solid analytical background and extreme dedication).
However, before you get that, you should as a minimum beat the house edge. And there is one pretty easy and straightforward thing you can do to reduce the house edge, that most people, unfortunately, don’t do. It is called odds shopping. Odds Shopping is the practice of always finding the best odds on the event you want to bet on. This is extremely important and severely underrated by most people.
This is the place where accounts in multiple bookmakers and exchanges and most importantly, brokers and betting agents come to use. Always bet on the best price available on the market, and you will be one step ahead in your task of beating the closing line.
Once you have learned to take the best price and perhaps even identify EV+ bets, now you need money to bet on them. Most people are not born rich, nor inherited a large sum of money after the death of a wealthy uncle.
Having good bets is no help when you don’t have the money to bet on them. That means you are starting from zero and need to build a bank. There are some simple ways to do it. The best one is called Sports Betting Arbitrage (a.k.a. Matched Betting a.k.a. Sure Betting) and relies on exploiting differences in odds between different bookmakers.
If you have already build your bank, the next step in proper bankroll management is to learn how to stake.
(Disclaimer: Even the best staking won’t help you if you don’t have EV+ bets)
The most scientifically founded strategy is the Kelly staking method. However, having EV+ bets, even flat staking will bring you profits. In any case, it is important to remember that the variance will be huge whatever staking you use. Also, don’t forget Martingale staking sucks and you should never use it.
There you go. I don’t know if these three are strictly speaking secrets, but they are certainly not (enough) well-known among punters and will help you up to your betting game. Good luck!