Horse Racing, Sport, Live Streaming and Bonus Offers
Sportsbet is the biggest corporate bookmaker in Australia. They ofter a huge range of markets and are renowned for their advertising campaigns and weekly promotions.
We take a deeper look into the operation and examine the Sportsbet experience through the eyes of a punter.
Matthew Tripp, son of bookmaker Alan, helped changed the online wagering industry. He bought Sportsbet in 2005 for $250 000 and started trading as a corporate bookmaker in Darwin.
Through industry growth and aggressive mainstream advertising he turned Sportsbet into the largest brand in the industry. Sportsbet was eventually sold to Paddy Power in the United Kingdom (UK) for roughly $338 million in 2011.
Is that an ROI of 135,100%?!
The sale, apart from making the Tripp family exceptionally wealthy, positions Paddy Power as the most powerful company in the global industry. They have a huge online and retail presence in the UK, they own Betfair UK, Betfair US and a lot of other brands in Europe. Plus Sportsbet is now the largest and most profitable corporate bookmaker in Australia.
Whilst Paddy Power operate from the UK, a lot of the Sportsbet decisions are made locally in Australia. Sportsbet’s Australian bookmaking license is set up in Darwin but the key personnel are in Melbourne.
Website Layout, Mobile Usability and App
Sportsbet haven’t reinvented their website or app for many years. And that’s a good thing. William Hill’s drastic overhaul is a case study in what not to do.
Sportsbet’s online properties are functional and easy to navigate. If you’re looking for promotions, racing or sport menus, you can get there quickly, no matter which platform.
Their blue colour scheme has been part of their branding since Matt Tripp started the business and the consistency works well. Another strength is that you can tell their menu bars prioritise what is current. The biggest, most popular markets of the day will always be easy to find in their quick links section or banner ads.
Our primary criticism is that because it has an option for every type of punter the website becomes crowded. There are unique images, big headers and lot’s of text all over the homepage. Similarly, there are hundreds of markets for each sporting event which can make it hard to find the important ones. First time uses would be overwhelmed but repeat offenders are presumably able to channel out the distractions and find what they need.
Another criticism and opportunity to improve would be live video content. Bet365 are the market leader of sporting television and Crownbet do a brilliant job with their AFL content. Sportsbet could put resources here in the future, though it’s not critical.
Why Bet With Them
Sportsbet are the market leader for promotions, which we’ll go into more details on in the next section. Punters should be taking advantage of these.
Additionally, they largely price their own markets. The secret to winning on the punt is shopping around. You absolutely have to take top odds. Providing you’re not restricted, you need to have a Sportsbet account for price comparison alone.
Sportsbet also bet to a tight percentage. 103% for american sport, 104% for NRL and AFL. Punter’s can’t ask for much more there. And Sportsbet also bet on just about anything. As far as we’re aware they have the most betting markets in the industry. A lot of them are automatically generated which can create a lot of frivolous ones (eg. team to win both halves). But they’re also first to market on some racing futures and obscure sport markets like the AFL’s rising star or the NBA’s rookie of the year.
Bonuses and Promo Generosity
Sportsbet are the trendsetters in betting promotions. They built their business through mainstream television ads and constant promotions. It made Matt Tripp a squillionaire and the market followed. Even the TAB and UBET are competing on promotions now.
You’ll get a $150 freebet just for signing up and there’s always weekly specials. Their 24 UP and 12 UP promotions for AFL and NRL have been particularly popular in 2017.
It’s not unusual for professional punters to open two accounts and back both sides of a match at 104%, hoping that someone leads and loses, thus paying out on two really big tickets.
The 12 UP or 24 UP promo is one of hundreds of promos Sportsbet run each year. These opportunities will continue every week as it’s fundamentally part of their brand and marketing campaigns.
That being said, most punters who take advantage of such initiatives will know that these promos are only available to certain clients. We encourage you to make hay while the sun shines because promo rorting has a shelf life. Sportsbet employ teams of people to find and ban the abusers. For that reason we can’t give them full marks on promos. They only let certain punters (ie losers) use them.
Given the Sportsbet and Paddy Power teams work in unison across multiple time zones, they offer live betting on all the big sports. The markets aren’t just head to head either, they’ll often be dozens of options including next tryscorer or goalscorer. It keeps it interesting and there are manual errors that you can take advantage of.
Sportsbet also introduced a click-to-call service which makes their live betting service in Australia much faster. They’re not a clear leader in live betting but they do as good a job as you can ask, given the legislative restrictions.
Client Profiling & Account Restrictions
This is the hardest part to review because different customers have different experiences at Sportsbet.
We know that they accept bets off some of the smartest professional punters in Australia. Horse racing geniuses can bet in every state, not just those protected by minimum bet rules. And some sharp sports punters can get on for a good bet.
However, they’ll also put significant restrictions on promo rorters and small winners. It’s not unusual for a marginally smart account to be limited to win $50 per bet.
However, we do feel that Sportsbet are relaxing their policing strategies. They used to be ruthless like most UK owned operations, but accounts are now living longer. Unlike several of their competitors Sportsbet accounts are innocent until proven guilty. You have to find a pricing error, back winners or snipe multiple shorteners to be on their radar.
Sportsbet are the biggest corporate bookmaker in Australia. You need an account there for their promotions and unique prices.
You won’t be able to rort promos very long but they should still let you have a bet even after they’ve flagged your account. We appreciate that they’re relaxing their policy on winning clients and they have a market on everything. The website works great and we enjoy trying to beat them.
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