Betting exchanges have become very popular in recent years but their popularity is now dwindling for a number of reasons. At WinDrawWin we do not personally recommend people to use betting exchanges for a number of reasons, detailed below. Instead we recommend using traditional sportsbooks who offer great welcome bonuses and ongoing bonuses, great customer service, timely withdrawals, great odds, and the ability to bet on an event well ahead of its start, among other reasons.


Most people immediately think that a betting exchange must be better than a traditional bookmaker, but here are some of the benefits of using a traditional bookmaker and not a betting exchange.

You get better odds with a betting exchange, right?

No, not necessarily. Here is why. Betting exchanges pride themselves on telling you that they offer a certain percentage higher odds than a bookmaker. Do not be fooled by these statistics. More than often you will get exactly the same if not better odds at a bookmaker like bet365. When a market opens on a betting exchange it requires liquidity. Liquidity basically means that a certain volume of other punters need to offer bets in a market at a price for others to then take up (some people lay, others back). When a market opens, for example Man Utd v Chelsea, there might not be hardly any liquidity in that market. This means that those punters that lay against a selection in a market can offer you poor odds, lower than a bookmaker, and then back that selection later, guaranteeing themselves a profit. Even close to kick off, odds may not be better value than with a bookmaker, especially on the big events like the English Premier League or Champions League.

Even if odds are better with an exchange, you still have to pay commission! - Betting exchanges charge commission on your winnings. This is usually 5%. So, if you bet £10 on a 10/1 selection with a betting exchange then you will end up winning £100. However you will lose £5 in commission. This commission hit each time you win actually lowers your odds in effect, quite often pulling those odds down to the same, if not lower value than traditional bookmakers.


You can bet on more sports with an exchange, right?

No, not necessarily. Exchanges pride themselves on allowing you to bet on almost anything. You can even bet on most of the lowest football leagues in each country. However, having loads of events and markets available is useless if there is no liquidity in those markets. Quite often the lower league markets have very low betting volumes and punters can often get caught out taking really low odds on markets that no one is betting on. If you want to bet on lower leagues and less popular events then we would always recommend going to a traditional bookmaker.

Traditional Bookmakers Offer Better Bonuses and Offers

True. Most betting exchanges make their money only from the commission charged on every winning bet you make. Therefore they do not tend to have the money to offer great sign up bonuses or regular offers on games. Take bet365 - they offer you cash back on ALL games where the result ends 0-0 and a massive sign up bonus too. You will not get such value with betting exchanges.

Traditional Bookmakers Are Easier To Understand

Most people find betting exchanges complicated and difficult to understand. It takes at least 3 months of betting in our experience to understand how betting exchanges work, and you cannot afford 3 months of losses before you get the hang of things! We have heard too many stories of people starting to use betting exchanges and then getting confused in the heat of the moment during in-play and not understanding what back or lay means and losing big money! Those who are experienced in using betting exchanges use this to their advantage - have a look at the correct score market on any game. Any traditional bookmaker will NOT allow you to bet on a score that is no longer possible. For example, Man Utd play Chelsea and Man Utd go 1-0 ahead. The likes of bet365 will not even show you odds for 0-0 anymore if this happens. However betting exchanges still show this selection, and even allow you to bet on it! One simple mistake by hitting the wrong button during in-play could therefore cost you.

But some betting exchanges offer live streaming

Yes, but so do a lot of bookmakers now, like bet365's live streaming service which is excellent. From tests we have performed, the live streaming service from bet365 is THE best live streaming service across the industry. We have found betting exchange live streaming to be intermittent and unreliable. Quite often the betting exchange live streaming service will show you live odds against a game, however the stream you are watching is often delayed by 10 seconds! What use is this when you are betting in-play? You might as well listen to the commentary on the radio or watch the game on TV instead if you can as it is often more up to date.

Good Bookmakers Offer Excellent Customer Service

If you have any trouble with placing a bet, or need to query a bet then most bookmakers have excellent customer service and you can chat online or call and resolve your issue quickly. We have heard far too many stories from our visitors about betting exchanges settling markets according to complicated market rules and people then lose their money and there is no comeback! For example, take a Next Manager market at a betting exchange. You often have to read through serveral pages of market rules to make sure that what you are betting on is what you want to bet on! For example we noted that when Rafael Benitez became the Chelsea manager some betting exchanges did not pay out winnings until he had been manager for 10 matches! That meant punters had to wait for their money to be credited for several months.


Following on from the point above we have experienced evidence of some betting exchanges limiting withdrawals and when customer service were contacted they refused to budge. One punter had deposited more than £20,000 on a debit card, and his bank sent him a new debit card. When he tried to withdraw money from his account on the new debit card the betting exchange refused to do this, saying that he could not withdraw more than he had deposited on that card!, even though he had deposited £20,000 previously. Instead the betting exchange forced him to withdraw cash to PayPal and other methods that incurred charges.

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