Converting betting odds is an important part of betting in 2019. With different betting platforms using a range of odds formats, it’s vital you know where and how to convert betting odds.
So what are the different odds formats we’re talking about?
Different odds formats
There are a number of different odds formats that betting companies offer around the world. Specifically there are three types of betting odds used in the industry.
- Fractional odds
- Decimal odds
- American odds
We’ll take a look at each of these odds formats below.
Fractional odds like 6/1 and 7/2 are the most common format used here in the UK. You’ve probably seen bookmakers use this format in their adverts whether that be on TV or in shops.
Fractional odds are simple as they show you the amount you’ll win for a certain wager. So if the odds are 6/1, a £1 bet would return £7 (including your £1 stake).
If fractional odds are the most popular and traditional odds format, decimal odds like 7.0 and 4.5 are the new boys on the block.
Since the rise of online gambling and the invention of betting exchanges, the popularity of decimal odds has increased significantly.
Like fractional odds, decimal odds are very easy to use. They allow you to easily calculate your total returns including your stake from a winning bet.
You multiply your stake by the odds. Therefore a £25 bet at decimal odds of 2.0 would return £50 (25 x 2 = 50).
The third and final odds format used within the betting industry are American odds. You guessed it, this format is mainly used within the US, so you probably won’t need to use them.
American odds work by showing you the amount you’d need to wager to win $100 or the amount you’d win from a $100 bet. I agree, not the simplest format out there.
We’ll look into American odds in more detail later.
Betting exchange odds vs bookmaker odds
As I mentioned earlier, different betting platforms like to use alternate odds formats.
Traditional bookmakers like Ladbrokes and Coral display their odds in the more common fractional format, although this can easily be changed.
On the other hand, betting exchanges like Smarkets show their odds in decimal format. Decimal odds are typically more accurate and easier to compare, making them a great option for betting exchanges.
I don’t understand why bookmakers don’t use decimal odds as a default. But bookies do seem to make some strange decisions at times.
Switching to decimal odds
There may be times when you would like to change how the odds are displayed in your bookmaker account.
As I mentioned above, most bookmakers show their odds in the fractional format. However, you can usually change this very easily from your account.
Here’s how you can change the odds format in your Coral account. Once you’re logged in, head to the top right section of the website where you’ll find ‘Fractional’.
Simply click that link and select ‘Decimal’. The page will reload and the odds format will change. As simple as that.
Converting fractional to decimal odds
So how do you convert betting odds?
Converting between different odds formats may be something you need to do, so we’ll look at how you can do that below.
I’ve used both of these sites and they’re very helpful, especially for more complicated conversions such as American odds.
Simply enter the current odds you have, whether that be fractional, decimal or American. The tool then works out the other odds for you. As easy as that!
Whilst the above method is great for working out complex odds, using the manual method below is far quicker, especially if you’re out and about.
The manual method involves some very simple maths and is specifically for converting from fractional to decimal odds. Let’s look at how it works.
Simply take the fraction, divide the first number by the second one and add one. Here’s an example.
I have fractional odds of 6/1 and I’m converting them to decimals. Divide 6 by 1 and then add 1.0. So this would give you decimal odds of 7.0.
If I had fractional odds of 7/2, I’d divide 7 by 2 and add 1.0. This would give me decimal odds of 4.5.
This method is great for those of you that take part in matched betting as you can quickly work out how the back and lay odds compare (more on this later).
American odds and how to use them
American odds are quite rare and you’ll usually only find them in… America, although most UK bookmakers allow you to display your odds in the American format.
As I mentioned earlier, American odds work by showing you the profit you’d make by wagering $100 or the required wager it would take to win $100. This depends on whether a positive or negative sign is shown before the value.
If the odds are positive like +137, that means a winning bet of $100 would return $37 ($137 including your $100 stake).
If the American odds are -137, you’d need to stake $137 to win $100 in profit.
Whilst this may seem more confusing than the odds mentioned above, you’re unlikely to ever use these odds unless you’re planning a trip to the US.
Betting odds for matched betting
For those of you that take part in matched betting or are looking to get started, this section is for you.
Matched betting requires you to compare odds between a betting exchange and a bookmaker on a regular basis. This is an inherent part of back and lay betting.
A betting exchange display their odds in decimal format so it’s easier if you switch your bookmaker account to show the same. It’s much easier to compare decimal odds than fractional odds.
As I said earlier, bookmakers allow you to do this with the click of a few buttons. If the option is not on the home screen it should be in your account settings.
If you can’t find the odds format settings, get in touch with customer support and they’ll be able to help you out.
Convert betting odds
Overall, it’s important for any bettor out there to understand how to convert betting odds. The key takeaways are;
- The three odds formats are fractional, decimal and American.
- You can easily switch between these formats in your bookie account.
- It’s easy to convert betting odds using a website or the manual method.
- Keep odds across different platforms consistent.
I’d love to hear what works for you. Which odds format do you like to use? Any tips for converting odds? Let me know by leaving a comment below right now.