This article will look at what a rollover bonus is, the standard method of converting the bonus into cash and the strategy I use to ensure I get the maximum value from my rollover bonuses.
What is a Rollover Bonus in Sports Betting?
A Rollover Bonus in sports betting is a bonus provided by a bookmaker to a customer where the customer is required to bet the bonus amount a certain number of times before the customer can withdraw the bonus as cash.
Rollover requirements vary from bookmaker to bookmaker with some rollover requirements being as low 1x the bonus whereas others can be as high as 30x the bonus or higher.
As matched bettors, we want to go for bonuses where the rollover requirement is no higher than 10x the bonus.
The Standard Rollover Bonus Strategy
The Standard Rollover Bonus Strategy involves placing back bets at the bookmaker and then laying those bets at a betting exchange.
You continue to place bets until the rollover requirements have been met at the bookmaker and you can withdraw your bonus.
The problem with this strategy is that you will lose a portion of your bonus each time you back a bet at the bookmaker and lay the bet at the exchange.
You could get lucky and your first back bet at the bookie can end up losing, which would mean you keep the lion’s share of the bonus.
However, you could just as easily find yourself in a situation where you keep winning your bets at the bookie, which means the value of the bonus will reduce each time.
Some matched bettors place their rollover bets at high odds in the hope that they will lose their bet at the bookie straight away.
However, if you are new to matched betting and you have a relatively small bankroll, then I wouldn’t recommend placing your rollover bets at high odds as there is always a small chance that your bet at the bookmaker could win, which would leave a big hole in your betting exchange account.
My Rollover Bonus Strategy
My Rollover Bonus Strategy is to underlay my rollover bets so that if I keep winning my bets at the bookmaker, I will keep 100% of the bonus and if one of my rollover bets loses, then I will have to accept a loss at the betting exchange but I will have transferred around 70-80% of the value of the bonus to my betting exchange account.
The best way to illustrate how this strategy works is to look at an example.
The below is a welcome offer from Betsafe, where you can get up to a €25 bonus and a €10 free bet when you sign up as a new customer.
If you look at the terms and conditions of the offer, you will see that the bonus comes with a rollover requirement where your bonus amount has to be wagered 5 times on Betsafe’s Sportsbook or horse racing, at odds of 1.50 or greater.
If you want to claim the max bonus of €25 then you will need to wager a minimum of €125.
So to extract the maximum amount of value from this rollover bonus, we will use the Underlay Method. First, we can either use an Oddsmatching tool to find a close match in odds to bet on that meets the minimum odds requirements or we can find a close odds match manually.
For the purposes of this example, we used the Profit Maximiser Matched Betting Software to find an appropriate match to bet on.
Using the matched betting software, I was able to find an EFL Trophy match between Ispwich and Colchester where you could back Ipswich to win at odds of 11/20 (1.55) at Betsafe and lay Ipswich to win at Betfair at odds of 1.58.
Next, I used a Matched Betting Calculator to work out how much I should lay at the betting exchange (see screenshots below).
As you can see from the matched betting calculator above, I need to place a lay bet of €47.41 at the betting exchange to underlay the bet at Betsafe.
If the match ends up in a draw or a Colchester win then we will lose €3.54 at the betting exchange but we will have transferred the bonus of €25 to our betting exchange account.
Therefore, I will have made a profit of €21.46 (€25-€3.54) on the welcome offer.
If the match ends in a win for Ipswich, then we will not have lost anything on the bet so we simply repeat the process and place another bet at the bookmaker and underlay it again at the betting exchange.
I will keep doing this until I either complete the wagering requirements at Betsafe or the bonus amount is transferred to my betting exchange account minus the loss made on the underlay bet.