Sports Betting Exchange Sites

Esports Background
You’ve surely heard about betting exchange sites if you’re a serious punter. Betting online is mostly done at bookmakers such as William Hill and 888sport, but betting exchanges might offer better odds. At least, that’s what most players have heard about, even if they don’t precisely know what a sports betting exchange is.

If you’re one of them, this BetZillion betting exchange guide will tell you everything you need to know about these unique betting sites.

Full List of Betting Exchanges

The global market of betting sites features plenty of excellent options. Whether it’s Paddy Power or Bet365 you’ve been using, the odds are great, the markets are even better, and you can compare bookies’ features online to find one you’ll bet on the most.

However, before you sign up for a regular bookie, we strongly advise visiting online betting exchange sites. While some punters might find them too confusing initially, we can confirm that betting exchanges offer a new level of excitement that bookies can’t match.

Popular in the UK and USA, betting exchanges such as Betfair have some of the best odds on specific sports such as horse racing. They offer systems, handicaps, and other types of bets, but this time, without the bookie wig.

With dozens of excellent betting exchange sites online, it can be tough to pick the right one. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of all betting exchanges for your convenience below.


Betfair operates the world’s biggest betting exchange. Headquartered in London, it’s also among the oldest betting sites on the web. Betfair was listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2010 as a billion-pound company.


A UK-based sports betting exchange, Smarkets promises fantastic odds at the lowest possible commissions. It has offices in London, Los Angeles, and Malta, covering a large area of the sports betting market.


Registered in Alderney, Betdaq is a bookie and betting exchange too. It also offers virtuals and a casino, uniquely combining all gambling services in an easy-to-use package.


Simply titled Matchbook, this is one of the most popular betting exchange trading sites. Matchbook promises deep liquidity and sky-high value and is a great exchange.


One of the few independent bookies on the market also has an exchange. BetVictor was founded back in 1946 and is headquartered in Gibraltar. Over the years, it has become one of the most successful exchanges on the web.


Ladbrokes is a major name in the sports betting industry. It’s also one of the top exchange betting sites, offering great odds on football, horse racing, spread betting, and more.

Betting Exchange Sites Offers

While betting exchanges may differ from bookies in some aspects, they’re completely the same in others. For example, the bonuses and promos are still the same and might even be bigger. When it comes to the types of rewards on offer, you’ll be reaping the rewards such as welcome bonuses, deposit and no deposit offers, and free bets.

New betting exchange websites might expand on that collection with price boosts and specials. It all depends on what the exchange deems fit for punters. One thing’s for sure – you won’t be missing out on great bonus offers when you choose an exchange over a bookie.

Welcome Bonus

The welcome bonus is the most common type at online gambling sites. You’ll find it in online casinos, bookmakers, and betting exchanges. In most cases, a first deposit bonus covers it in full. For example, a betting exchange might give you a £50 bonus when you deposit £50 or more.

To get this bonus, you should cover the minimum qualifying deposit. It might be £10 or £20 – you’ll need to check the terms and conditions to see what the site asks. A 100% match bonus on your first deposit will give you that much in return, so you start betting with double the money.

Keep in mind that this is not a free bonus. You will need to wager it a certain number of times – that’s what the wagering requirements indicate. The lower the number is, the easier it’ll be to keep what you win with a welcome bonus.

Free Bets

Free bets are a punter’s favourite bonus. You’ll find them at a bookie and any betting exchange. It’s a great way of luring new customers and keeping existing punters happy. While these bonuses are usually not as big as deposit bonuses, a tenner as a free bet still beats any other bonus if it comes without wagering requirements.

Many of them do, making them a favourite in the eyes of punters. Still, it would be a good idea to read the T&Cs before you claim a free bet at the sports betting exchange.

How Do Betting Exchanges Work?

That’s the million-dollar question. There is some confusion among punters about the differences between bookies and betting exchanges. While they are similar, the key differences are under the hood.

The biggest difference is how they make money. When you bet at online bookies, you’re betting against the house. In essence, punters can bet on any outcome of a sports match at online bookmakers. The bookmakers then lay the bet themselves and offer their money if the customer wins.

At online betting exchange sites, things are different. Exchanges don’t lay the bets themselves; instead, they let customers lay and back bets between themselves. One could say that you’re betting against other punters rather than the bookie at betting exchanges. The commission fees are significantly lower, taking a percentage of the estimated winnings.

In terms of odds, exchanges are much better when compared to bookies. Punters, instead of the bookie, control the odds at these sites. It’s a free market, and the odds depend on how many bets are placed. Punters get a much better value which makes betting exchanges so popular.

The process of betting is largely the same. It’s very easy to place a bet at exchanges these days. If you’ve bet at online bookies, you shouldn’t have trouble doing the same in exchanges.

What Is a Betting Exchange?

As mentioned earlier, betting exchange sites are similar to bookmakers, with one notable difference – punters bet against others instead of going up against the bookie. If this is your first time at an exchange, you’ll need to learn more about matched betting as well as backing and laying odds.


A back bet is a sports bet where you stake money on a certain outcome. For example, you can wager that Manchester City will win the Manchester derby on home ground. A back bet is placed against another punter who bets on a different outcome in the same match.

It differs from a standard bet placed at a sportsbook, where you bet on an outcome against the bookmaker. For this to happen, betting exchanges will charge a small fee, usually 5% of the estimated winnings.


Laying a bet is the complete opposite of backing a wager. Laying is betting from the other side, where you bet against a certain outcome. For example, a lay bet would be for Manchester City not to win in the Manchester derby. In this case, you will win your lay bet if Manchester United wins the match or ends in a draw.

Simply put, you win your lay bet at the sports betting exchange if your team doesn’t win the match.

Matched Betting

Matched betting is prevalent nowadays as many consider it a safe way to win. This technique usually involves free bets and betting bonuses to place a back and lay bet at different betting exchanges. By doing this, you’ll be covering all outcomes in a single match and get guaranteed profit in return.

While this might sound like scamming bookies, it’s a legit option many punters use. Bookmakers and betting exchanges can’t stop it, so you’re free to use it as you see fit. Remember that you shouldn’t expect great returns due to covering all outcomes. You will still be able to make a profit, just smaller.

Commission Rates

The commission rate is one of the largest (if not the largest) differences between bookmakers and betting exchanges. Betfair charges 5% on wins only, while Smarkets, Betdaq, and Matchbook keep 2%. That number is significantly lower than bookies’ wig and why exchanges have better odds on most sports.

Liquidity on Betting Exchange Markets

Liquidity at betting exchange sites is a term that describes the pool of maximum money you, as a punter, can place in a given market. In simpler terms, your bets at exchanges can’t exceed a certain amount. Every bet can only be matched as long as there’s enough to cover the opposite outcome.

In-Play Trading and Live Betting

In-play trading and live betting are allowed at betting exchange trading sites. It’s also quite popular, as punters love putting their money down on in-play matches. Of course, it’ll require you to be fast to bet on live markets, but the odds are much better if you play your bets right.

Betting Exchange Trading Tips and Strategies

There are plenty of tips experts can tell you about betting exchanges that should optimize your profits. The first one is matched betting. Whenever you have a free bet or bonus, you should try matched betting as it ups your chances to win at least something.

Our experts believe that the best betting exchange strategy is backing and then laying the favourites and underdogs. This is because the odds decrease as the match nears. Before that happens, a punter should place a bet on a favourite or underdog at a game a week away. Once the odds are not that favourable, another wager follows. It’s a high-risk, high-reward strategy that can pay off big with a bit of luck.

How to Choose the Best Betting Exchange Sites

Choosing the top betting exchanges these days can be a bit challenging. The market is flooded with plenty of options, and punters are confused about picking the right one.

Here at BetZillion, we have the largest betting exchanges list in the industry, and we’ll tell you how to pick the suitable exchange for your wants and needs.


The first thing to check when looking at betting exchanges is the license. A good betting exchange will be licensed by the highest authorities, such as the UKGC. It also needs a valid SSL certificate and other safety and security measures to ensure your data and money won’t be stolen or sold to the highest bidder.

As mentioned earlier, you should only look at licensed betting exchanges. The ones we have are widely believed to be the best in the industry, with sporting licenses from the UKGC and others.

Best Odds on The Market

You shouldn’t bother looking at exchanges if their odds aren’t among the best. That’s not a problem Smarkets, Betdaq, or Betfair have, so stick to the big guns.

Convenient Payment Options

The top online betting exchange sites should have convenient and fast payout options. These should feature bank transfers, E-wallets, and prepaid vouchers that suit all kinds of punters.

Betting Exchange Sites Reviews

Reading our betting exchange reviews could give you a perfect insight into what you can expect. We leave no stone unturned in our reviews so you can compare features between many sites and see what each offers.

Is It Worth Using Betting Exchange Sites?

To answer your question quickly, yes, it is. Betting exchanges have much better odds, and using a calculator for the payouts should tell you the same. If you apply strategies to your betting and gamble responsibly, betting exchanges can be more profitable than online bookies.

Advantages of Betting Exchanges

  • Much better odds than sportsbooks
  • Live betting is even more exciting
  • Matched betting is built for exchanges

Disadvantages of Betting Exchanges

  • Your bet might not be matched sometimes
  • Some markets may not have liquidity

Betting Exchanges vs. Sportsbooks

You can learn more about the different exchanges using the betting exchange comparison tool. But how do they fare against sportsbooks? Well, the odds are certainly better, and that’s a major advantage exchange have over web bookmakers. The software is mostly the same, so they’re easy to use even if you’re new to this exciting world of betting.

The commissions are also lower at betting exchanges, and that’s something to think about before you start betting. Of course, bookies have more markets, but the odds for most of them should be lower.

Betting exchanges are more valuable, so there’s no reason not to try them if you know how to bet online.

Betting Exchange Overview

Betting exchange sites are a great way to get more value out of your bets. As most beginners think, they are not complicated and may even be more fun to bet on than online bookies. Here are some interesting facts about them that might push you to try this exciting way of betting.

  • When choosing a betting exchange, the key features to look for are the license, the value of odds, and if it offers live betting and early cashout;
  • The best betting exchange sites in 2023 are Smarkets, Betfair, and Betdaq;
  • Betting exchanges accept a variety of payment methods, with E-wallets such as Neteller, Skrill, and PayPal being the most convenient;
  • The most popular sports at trading sites are football, horse racing, basketball, cricket, and tennis.

Responsible Gaming

Before you start placing bets at betting exchanges, it’s important to remember to do it responsibly. It means betting with a cool head and not allowing your emotion to get the best of you. Start small, manage your bankroll, and don’t chase your losses.

If you think you might be addicted to gambling, talk to a betting exchange’s customer support team for help.

Bottom Line

Our betting exchange explained guide should be best for enough punters to understand how exchange betting is done. It’s a different but valuable way to bet on sports online with better odds due to low commission rates.

If you’re looking for the top betting exchanges online, BetZillion’s got them all. Choose a trading site from our list, and you can rest assured that you’re getting a safe and secure option to bet with.

Frequently Asked Questions

Tim Harrison
Betting Guru

Tim is our betting guru. Every gaming site needs one, and Tim’s our guy. He has plenty of experience in betting online and is quite successful at it. Tim’s favorite sports are hockey, baseball, and Esports. Tim believes the latter to be the future of betting.

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