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Choosing a Betting Site

Shopping for a sportsbook is like shopping for a car: there are lots of options on the market and if you do a little homework, you’ll end up happy. However, if you try to cut some corners, you could end up with a lemon. To help you shop for the best place to place your action, we’ve devised an all-encompassing guide on how to choose the best sportsbook.

How to choose a Betting Site

One of the easiest ways to narrow down the list of sportsbooks is by figuring out which ones are available to you. Sports bettors can compare betting sites to find the best online sportsbook that services their region.


Next on the shopping list is reputation. We’re not trying to sound ‘clicky’, but you have to be careful who you associate with. If you want to deal with sportsbooks that have a bad reputation, expect all sorts of shenanigans. That means a challenging time opening up an account, questionable customer service, and an arduous time withdrawing your funds. However, if you deal with many of the best sportsbooks brand names – like the top-rated books that industry watchdog SBR recommends – then you’ll be in good hands. Many are publicly traded companies or sportsbooks with pristine, longstanding reputations. Those are the books that you want to deal with. The rest will only cause headaches.

Banking Methods

After you’ve checked the first two boxes off the list, the next step is to examine the banking methods. There are many options for depositing and withdrawing from a sportsbook. For example, a credit card deposit or withdrawal is instantaneous. However, something like Western Union requires you physically get to a banking location, which takes more effort. You’ll also want to look for books with lots of banking methods. Should something change in the future, you’ll have more ways to transfer funds back and forth. Withdrawal will be particularly important.  The best betting sites for withdrawal offer several methods.

Features That You Are Looking For

Now that we’ve got the technical stuff out of the way, it’s time to have some fun. Online sportsbooks come in all shapes and sizes and offer all sorts of features. Here are the main elements of a book that you should be shopping for:

Customer Service – Take a look at how you can contact customer service, which hours they’re open, and how quickly they respond. The best books will have options to call, chat, and e-mail 24 hours a day and seven days a week. Other books only allow e-mail correspondence.

Live Betting – Live betting sites allow you to bet in-game while the action is happening. It’s a relatively new feature that has been implemented in many books over the last few years, so some books do it better than others. And some sportsbooks still don’t offer it.

Low Juice – The amount of juice you’re laying directly affects your bottom line. Some sportsbooks offer cheaper lines (-105 on football instead of -110, for example), which means you would have to wager 5% less each time. In the long run, that can save you a lot of money, and sharp bettors will understand that. For recreational bettors, this is a smaller consideration.

Variety – Almost all sportsbooks will offer the bread-and-butter lines from the major sports like NFL betting sites, NBA betting sites, MLB, NHL, and college sports. However, as you shop for sportsbooks, you’ll notice that some books have a much wider variety of betting lines than others. For example, FanDuel offers a huge selection of major sports props to play, as you can read about in our FanDuel review. Some books will have a full array of Mixed Martial Arts betting lines that includes KOTC and Bellator, while some books will only offer the major UFC events. Variety differs from book to book, so take that into account.

Casino/Racebook – Speaking of variety, a casino and racebook are an extension of that. Some sportsbooks will have a casino and a racebook side-by-side, which gives you more options to play when sports are not your fancy. If you’re a horse racing enthusiast, you can find some books that offer lines on every racetrack in North America. And if the casino games are your flavor, you can find live dealers, 3D slots, and almost every other type of game you can play in Vegas.

Deposit Bonus – Almost all sportsbooks will give you a deposit bonus to start, but some will offer more than others. 10% is about the industry standard, but you can easily find more than that. Make sure you also consider what rollover is tied to the bonus when you accept it. Lastly, keep an eye on betting sites that have reload bonuses on top of initial deposit bonuses. That gives you a chance to keep collecting coins even when you redeposit later on down the road. Check out more on our sportsbook promos pages - we have US bonuses for FanDuel, DraftKings, Caesars, and many more!