Best Sportsbooks for New Bettors
These sportsbooks are known as best for new bettors.
Superb Customer Service
High-quality customer support is vital for any online sportsbook targeting beginners. The agents must be polite, friendly, patient, knowledgeable and well-trained. You should be able to receive customer support on a 24/7 basis, 365 days a year, via live chat, toll free phone or email. You would normally only use email for non-urgent queries. The live chat icon should be clearly displayed on the homepage, and there should be a “Contact Us” page that provides a phone number and email address.
The best online sports betting sites will rapidly connect you to the customer service team, as interminable waiting times can really put off beginners. You should then be able to receive clear, concise responses to any questions you might have. The best online sportsbooks also have very good FAQ sections, which walk you through the sign-up process, explain how to make deposits and withdrawals and lay out the betting rules in clear terms, often with the use of visual aids.
Simple Sign-Up Process
You should be able to register for an online sportsbook quickly and easily. There is normally a button at the top of the homepage that reads “Join Now” or “Sign Up”. You need to click on it to trigger the registration form. Some sportsbooks require you to jump through a lot of hoops in a multi-stage process, whereas others make it quick and simple, with helpful tools such as an address finder.
You often have to complete a process known as KYC, which stands for Know Your Customer, in order to sign up for an online sportsbook account. This typically requires you to upload a scan of a utility bill to prove your address and government-issued ID. Some online sportsbooks make this a really painful process, and they take several days to verify your documents, whereas others can wrap it up in a matter of minutes. The best sportsbooks allow you to start betting on sports within a few minutes of clicking “Sign Up”.
Easy Betting Software
It is vital that you find an online sports betting site with a user-friendly interface when you are starting out. These are some of the key requirements:
- The text should be large, clear and easy to understand.
- The pages should be laid out intuitively, without any clutter.
- The menu headers should make sense, providing helpful shortcuts.
- Navigation should be simple and natural.
- There should be a search function, which works properly.
- Pages should load quickly, without any glitches.
- The bet slip should populate effectively.
- Sections like the cashier, promotions and “Contact Us” should be clearly displayed.
- Popular sports should be displayed prominently.
The best sportsbooks make it easy for new sports bettors to find sports, leagues and games they are interested in. They present you with a clear choice of betting options on each game, and they often furnish you with a wealth of helpful stats. They then make it easy for you to add selections to the bet slip, to enter your stake, to confirm and place your bets, and to check on the status of your wagers after they have been placed.
Clearly Defined Betting Options
Most newcomers stick to three classic sports betting markets:
Moneyline – A straightforward prediction on which team will win a game.
Spread – A bet on which team will cover the point spread, which is a handicap given to the supposedly stronger team in order to level the playing field.
Totals – A prediction on the cumulative points, goals or runs scored by both teams in a game.
They should always be the first betting options displayed when you land on a particular game at an online sportsbook. However, there are hundreds of alternative betting options for you to choose from, and you stand a better chance of earning a profit if you know what they all entail. The best online sportsbooks therefore make all the different options clear and easy to understand.
These betting odds are often grouped into game props, player props, alternative spreads and totals, and halves and quarters or periods. You should have a wide array of futures betting options to choose from, and the live betting section should be neat, user-friendly and full of betting markets, with features like cash out and same game parlay builders clearly explained. The bet slip should make it easy for you to compile multiple bets like parlays and round robins, while always explaining your total risk and the potential profit you stand to earn.
Strong Mobile Capabilities
Most new sports bettors will be keen to place wagers via their mobile devices, such is the prevalence of smartphones in the modern era. It is therefore imperative that online sportsbooks invest in high-quality mobile apps or mobile-optimized versions of their sites. They should boast all the same functions as the desktop sites, but condensed into a smaller format, with lots of helpful shortcuts designed to aid the navigation process.
The best mobile sports betting sites allow you to place wagers on big upcoming and live sporting events with just a few taps of the screen. They also make it quick and easy for you to find obscure sporting events that you might be interested in betting on. These mobile sports betting sites should allow you to make deposits and withdrawals, access customer service and claim bonuses in a seamless fashion via your device, and they should work well on all iOS, Android and Windows Phone operating systems, with no glitches or lag times.
Convenient Banking Options
The best online sportsbooks will cater to a wide variety of newcomers by offering a range of convenient banking methods. The most popular deposit options include:
|Credit Card and Debit Card||You will normally see Visa and MasterCard accepted, but many sites accept American Express and Discover too.|
|Direct Bank Transfer||You can often send funds directly to a sportsbook, either from your bank account or by using a service such as ACH echeck, Interac, Rapid Bank Transfer or Trustly. Wire transfers and P2P transfers are also commonly accepted when you want to deposit money into a sports betting account.|
|E-wallets||PayPal, Skrill, Neteller and ecoPayz make it simple to deposit money into an online sportsbook, without the need to type in your credit card details each time.|
|Cryptocurrency||Many offshore sportsbooks now accept cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ether and Tether. This facilitates quick, safe and convenient peer-to-peer transfers, and crypto is particularly popular with younger adults that are just getting into sports betting for the first time.|
|Alternative Methods||Alternative methods include prepaid cards and vouchers, services such as PayNearMe, pay by phone options like Boku and Zimpler, and niche online payment providers.|
The best online sports betting sites offer quick withdrawals. Newcomers will be deterred from online betting if they are forced to wait days or even weeks to receive their money. Sites like BetOnline and Bovada typically provide same day payouts if you choose cryptocurrency as your withdrawal option. You can also receive rapid withdrawals to e-wallets, and some Visa withdrawals are instant at sites such as Bet365.
The best online sportsbooks will process and accept your payout requests quickly, and they have a long history of paying out in full and on time. It is vital that you stick to trustworthy online betting sites like BetOnline, Bookmaker, Bovada and Heritage Sports, and avoid the scam sites such as those on the sportsbook blacklist that routinely fail to pay customers the winnings they are entitled to. Check out our sportsbook reviews to find the most reputable online sports betting sites in the business.
Competitive Betting Odds
You may well be new to the world of online sports betting, but nobody likes getting ripped off. It is therefore important to seek out the sites that offer high-quality betting odds on a regular basis.
An odds comparison service such as the one offered for free by Bookmakers Review can highlight which sportsbooks provide the best odds on each specific game across NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL games, plus horse racing and other major US sports like UFC, college football, college basketball, tennis and golf. The best online betting sites cover a wide range of sports in excellent detail, and they provide competitive odds on hundreds of betting options within big games, including lots of prop bets.
Low Minimum Betting Limits
Newcomers generally want to dip a toe in the water when they begin betting on sports. It helps to be able to place low wagers on the major sports leagues while you are learning the ropes, and you can then increase your stakes when you grow more confident in your handicapping skills. For US players, low betting limits generally mean $1 or less per wager. Some sportsbooks require you to bet at least $10 or more on each selection, so you might want to avoid them when you are just getting started.
Great Bonuses and Promotions
Most online sportsbooks use bonuses and promotions in an effort to entice new customers. It helps them to stand out in a crowded market, and you should always take advantage of these bonus offers. These are the key offers to look out for:
Welcome Bonus | A sign-up bonus provides you with an incentive to register for an online sports betting account. You generally have to make a deposit in order to unlock free bet credit, as no deposit bonuses are very rare. A great example of a sign-up bonus is the 100% first time crypto bonus at BetOnline, whereby you can deposit up to $1,000 of your own money, and you will receive the same amount in free bets. Make sure you check the terms and conditions to see how many times you need to roll the bonus funds over before you can make a withdrawal.
Reload Bonus | This provides you with free bets every time you top up your account using Visa, MasterCard, crypto or bank transfer. E-wallets are generally excluded from bonus offers. You will receive a percentage of your deposit in the form of free bet credits. For example, BetOnline offers a 35% reload bonus.
Promotions | Additional promotions include parlay insurance, odds boosts, parlay boosts, free bets, rebates, and bad beat insurance.
Loyalty Program | You can rack up loyalty points by placing sports bets and casino bets, and then exchange them for free bets and other incentives. You generally climb up the tiers, earning better rewards as you progress.
Betting Tutorials and Insight
Some of the best betting sites provide video tutorials and helpful articles that explain how to bet in simple, concise terms. These Sports Betting 101 articles are helpful for newcomers to online gambling, but if they are unavailable, you can access a wealth of useful information by browsing Bookmakers Review under the “Learn” section of the menu.
Best Online Sports Betting Sites for Beginners
The best online sportsbooks for newcomers excel in the vast majority of the categories listed above. However, they all have their own strengths, so read our detailed sportsbook reviews to find your perfect match from within the list. You can then sign up for an account, make a deposit, claim your welcome bonus and start betting on sports today. We should also point out that you can sign up for accounts with multiple online sports betting sites. In fact, we would encourage you to do so. You may want to stick with one online sportsbook at first, but you can then benefit from another welcome bonus and quickly find the best betting lines on sports events by signing up with extra sportsbooks.