Bet trading on betting exchanges

Betting exchanges allow members to back and lay sports selections. Generally the betting exchange offer better odds than traditional bookmakers and have partnerships with third party software providers to provide tools for bet trading. To browse the Bet trading page use the table below.

A vital component of bet trading is that there is enough money flowing into the market.  The movement of money into betting exchange markets is called liquidity.  Liquidity is important for bet trading because it allows traders to get trades executed quickly.

Liquidity is also essential for making the odds on betting exchange markets move.  Movement in betting odds is essential for trading, because traders exploit movement in odds for profit.

The internet offers access to multiple betting exchanges.  To explain bet trading this article will focus on Betfair.  Betfair is the biggest betting exchange and has the best liquidity.  This article will discuss different types of bet trading and suggest which sport is the best to trade. The bet trading article does not explain how Betfair works.  Visit the betting exchange page available from the navigation to get Betfair explained.



Arbitrage betting is a type of bet trading on Betfair. Generally this type of trading is known as back lay arbitrage. The rule with back lay arbitrage is that you back high and lay low (or lay low and back high, the order doesn’t matter). The bets are placed on the same player, team or horse. Here is an example of back lay arbitrage between a traditional betting bookmaker and Betfair. You find a horse that has odds of 8/1 (9.0) with William Hill. The maximum stake is 500 pounds (or currency equivalent). You back the full amount. The lay odds available on Betfair are 7/1 (8.0). An arbitrage caclulator or betting bot software can be used to work out how much you need to stake to ‘lay off’ at the lower price. The difference between odds (9.0 – 8.0 = 1.0) is the guaranteed profit and completes the trade. This example exploits the difference in odds between a traditional betting bookmaker and Betfair at one point in time.

Back lay arbitrage bet trading can be done using Betfair alone, which makes the trading quicker and easier. The odds on Betfair fluctuate making it possible to complete back lay arbitrage trades regularly. Some sports produce these fluctuations more than others. Tennis matches produce odds that fluctuate making Betfair tennis trading a good example.

Back back arbitrage is also possible. This strategy works where there can only be two outcomes from an event. Back back arbitrage is used for Betfair tennis trading or handicap football betting, for exmaple. Both back – lay and back – back arbitrage can be done on the same exchange, between exchanges such as between Betfair and Betdaq, or between the exchange and a traditional bookmaker.

Swing Trading

Betfair swing trading involves making back and lay bets on the same selection. The same horse, team, player etc. The first bet is placed before the race, game, or match. It can be a back or lay bet. The second bet, which completes the trade, is placed when the odds move. Betfair swing trading relies on there being sufficient movement in the odds to allow the trader to place a corresponding back or lay bet to secure a risk free profit. If the odds move the wrong way a stop loss is applied that ensures the trade does not lose more than a predefined amount. If the first bet is a back bet the odds need to move lower for a lay bet to be made to secure a profit. If the trader lays first the corresponding back bet must be made at larger odds. Swing trading is a primary Befair trading strategy when trading horse races or football trading.

Scalping on Betfair

Scalping on Betfair is a variation of back lay arbitrage and swing trading. The difference between scalping and the other types or bet trading is timing. Scalping on Betfair involves dipping in and out of the market quickly making a series of small trades. The key to scalping is making more winning scalp trades than loseing scalp trades.


To summarise, exchange trading is easiest using Betfair the largest betting exchange due to higher liquidity on Betfair compared to other betting exchanges like Betdaq. The best Betfair trading strategies use a mixture of back lay arbitrage, swing trading and scalping. There is a link to the best sports for each type of betting within each section above. No matter what sport you decide to trade every Betfair trading strategy will have set rules. After choosing a trading strategy find clearly defined rules rules regarding money management and where to enter and exit trades. These form the core of a good Betfair trading strategy.