How to start a sportsbook from scratch in 2024?


  • 23 min read
How to start a sportsbook from scratch in 2024?

Are you interested in launching your own sportsbook? If the answer is yes, then you’re in the right place! TheGamblest has prepared another informative blog post, where you will find valuable insights on how to begin your entry into the iGaming business.

Operating a sportsbook is not the easiest task, because there are numerous factors to take into account. However, by approaching it with careful arrangement and skillful execution, you can prepare your path to triumph in this industry.

Success depends on doing each step with precision and care. In this article, we will share strategies that can help your betting business thrive by creating a betting website that not only attracts visitors but also retains existing players.

What is a sportsbook?

A sportsbook (synonymous with a bookmaker or bookie) is a business or platform that accepts and facilitates sports betting activities. It serves as a place where players can wager money on the outcomes of various sporting events, such as football games, basketball matches, horse races, and more. In addition to traditional sporting events, sportsbooks frequently offer betting opportunities on a diverse selection of other events, including politics, fantasy sports, esports, and much more.

Now that you grasp the concept of a sportsbook, you might be wondering if becoming a bookie is a worthwhile pursuit in 2024. With the rising need for sportsbooks, especially as more regions legalize it, you’ll tap into a growing market and expand your client base over time. Let’s now briefly discuss the modern sports betting industry and continue the basic steps to launch a bookmaker.

How has the sports betting industry developed?

Sportsbooks have got immense popularity in last years, employing a staggering number spread across more than 20,000 sports wagering organizations on a global scale. Between 2022 and 2023, the overall sports betting market experienced significant growth, expanding from $96.84 bln to $104.78 bln. This represents a CAGR of 8.2%.

The entry of up-to-date tech advancements into the game has revolutionized the whole wagering industry, enhancing its reputation and captivating a growing number of enthusiastic gamblers on a monthly basis. Today, online sports wagering has become easily accessible to virtually anyone, anywhere, due to the convenience of placing bets through personal computers, laptops, or mobile devices. A sportsbook’s overall success is greatly influenced by the design of its website, which should be intuitive, visually appealing, and capable of captivating users.

Main steps to launch a sportsbook

Launching a sportsbook is a complex endeavor that requires careful planning, compliance with regulations, and continuous monitoring of operations to ensure success. Here are the main steps you should consider as your primary guide:

Identify your niche

Finding the most lucrative sports betting niche is difficult because it depends on the player and what they like. However, if you’re considering starting a sports betting website as a bookie and want to build it from the ground up, the initial step is to narrow down your focus. This entails deciding the sports to provide on your platform and the kinds of bets you’re going to provide. It’s wise to start with a few of the most well-liked sports, particularly when finances are tight.

A significant audience of active gamblers who will be willing to make bets on your website will surely be drawn to your website if you concentrate on at least five popular sports. Below is an array of popular sports that people gamble on that you could consider thinking about putting on your platform to help you make your decision:

  • Football
  • Cricket
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Tennis
  • Boxing
  • Horse racing
  • Esports

Select your operating region

Starting your own sportsbook also includes the step of choosing your operating region carefully. Different sports betting markets vary in maturity and legal status. Established markets like the UK contrast with emerging ones like the US and Africa, each with associated costs and benefits.

Legal infrastructure is a significant challenge when establishing a sportsbook. In the UK, it’s advanced and offers accessible legal services. However, operating in other regions means dealing with different licensing bodies like the Malta Gaming Authority and Gibraltar Gambling Commissioner, necessitating in-depth research into local gambling laws. In the US, the legal landscape is complex, with states setting their gambling laws following the federal ban on sports betting. In contrast, the UK offers more straightforward regulations but still poses legal challenges.

Get a license

Similar to any online gambling venture, a sports betting website must acquire an official license to operate legally. This involves obtaining authorization from the relevant regulatory body, such as the Gambling Commission or an appropriate entity in your operational region. It’s essential to be aware that this licensing process can be time-inefficient.

Typically, securing a license independently may require several months from the initial application to final approval. Therefore, it is crucial to be patient and plan ahead accordingly.

top online gambling licenses ultimate guide for operatorsOne critical aspect to consider is choosing the jurisdiction carefully. Different regions have varying regulations and requirements for obtaining a license. Therefore, it’s vital to research and select a jurisdiction that aligns with your business objectives and offers a favorable regulatory environment for online sports wagering. This prudent decision will play a significant role in the success and legitimacy of your sports betting website. To get more information about iGaming licenses, check out our latest article reviewing the best gambling commissions.

Get a platform

A sports wagering platform refers to a website, application, or any other Internet or mobile-accessible platform that allows sports enthusiasts to engage in betting on sports events. You have three options for creating your sportsbook platform: build it from the ground up, utilize white-label software, or collaborate with established platform providers such as BtoBet, Genius Sports, GIG, SIS, and others.

Integrate payment gateways

With protection, a broad diapason of alternatives, and quick transactions as key priorities, select the most suitable payment method for your sportsbook. Defend against the dangers of fraud as well as money laundering while offering your clients a transparent and safe experience. Note three vital aspects when selecting a payment provider with risk management, lower commissions, and swift transactions for both fiat and cryptocurrency payment options.top 8 casino payment solution providers in 2023 banner.png

Also, remember that a successful sportsbook website must offer various payment options:

  • Debit/credit cards
  • Bank transfers
  • E-wallets
  • Cryptocurrency payments, including Bitcoin, Tether, Ethereum, or Dogecoin.

Choose your marketing strategy

A well-planned and step-by-step sketched marketing strategy is vital for new sportsbooks. Here are effective advertising options:

  • SEO: Drive leads through professional optimization – relevant keywords, backlinks, quality content, and much more.
  • Social Media Boost: Utilize SM communities with paid ads and constant content posting.
  • Email Marketing: Use email ads for user acquisition and retention for higher results.
  • Affiliate Marketing: Do not forget to utilize your customers and companions as marketers for easy expansion and effective promotion.

Top sports and events to include in your sportsbook

If you want to start your own sportsbook, you should take into account certain sports and events that are essential in today’s market. Bettors love to see a wide range of the most popular sports and events on the betting platform.

Football dominates online sports betting in the world, constituting over half of all bets. It’s imperative for a betting site to offer odds on numerous leagues, and tournaments, such as:

  • English Football League
  • Premier League
  • FIFA World Cup
  • Bundesliga
  • National Football League (NFL)
  • Serie A
  • La Liga
  • Major League Soccer (MLS)
  • UEFA Champions League
  • EFL Championship
  • UEFA Europa League

The United States showcases a strong affinity for sports betting, with the top most popular sports to bet on being basketball (53%), and football (51%). Below are the leagues and tournaments for basketball betting that will impress your players:

  • NBA
  • Euroleague
  • Liga ACB
  • HEBA A1
  • Lega Basket Serie A
  • LNB Pro A
  • Chinese Basketball Association
  • Your local league

Consider also the popularity of events in darts, cricket, snooker, golf, rugby league, and rugby union. Additionally, caters to niche interests such as Esports, Politics, Awards, TV, and Entertainment Specials, with potential virtual sports betting solutions. Diversify your sportsbook with a variety of markets.

Non-traditional sports betting trends in 2023-24

For operators who want to start a sportsbook and be in trend for their player base, we have brought some exciting betting types besides the traditional one, that may help you attract a huge diversity of bettors and engage them with your innovative approach.

Microbetting

what is micro betting micro bets in 2022 explained banner.png

Microbetting refers to a form of betting where participants place extremely small wagers on very specific and minute outcomes or events within a sports game or other activities. Unlike traditional betting, which typically involves larger sums on overall game results or broader statistics, microbetting allows for bets on specific actions, occurrences, or short intervals during the event.

While microbetting can be seen as a fun and entertaining way for some individuals to engage with sports events and other activities, it has raised concerns from regulators and advocates of responsible gambling. The main concern is that the fast-paced and continuous nature of microbetting may encourage impulsive behavior and addictive gambling tendencies. Additionally, the small bet sizes might give the illusion of low risk, leading some individuals to underestimate the potential financial consequences of their bets.

Esports betting

In the last years, the world of Esports has experienced unparalleled popularity, transitioning from a niche pastime into a global cultural sensation. The growing network of Esports enthusiasts had a crucial role in the Esports betting industry. With Esports tournaments drawing in millions of viewers and participants from around the globe, the market has become one of the trendiest wagering options, captivating the interest of both expert bettors and newcomers alike.

Crypto betting

In the early years of crypto betting, some unscrupulous websites raised concerns about trustworthiness. However, the landscape has evolved and will continue to grow. The good news is that the industry is now subject to heightened regulation, a trend that encompasses the sites we endorse above. That is why incorporating crypto betting will help emerging sportsbook operators engage a wider player base.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a new trend in sports betting and significantly influences all aspects of iGaming. AI leverages intricate algorithms and machine learning models to examine and forecast the results of sporting events. These AI systems can handle tremendous data sets, incorporating historical statistics, user performances, team dynamics, weather conditions, and other factors. Through this analysis, AI produces predictions that surpass the accuracy of those made by human bettors, providing more informed insights. Big data can now predict the potential and talent of players. Data is the new gold, and data analytics is on the rise. It’s not just about goals, passes, and distance covered; playing patterns, tactics, and other metrics will become everyday essentials.

Useful tips for operators

Having discussed the main steps of starting your own sportsbook, let’s now explore some common tips that will assist you to improve your overall sportsbook offerings.

Tip 1: Work hard on your UI and UX

It’s vital to treat your betting website as a product that requires a more user-centric approach. An intricate or confusing interface leads to user frustration and, ultimately, a customer decrease. The main purpose is to maintain your audiences involved and eager to continue utilizing your offerings, so prioritize ease and enjoyment throughout. Develop and make better the overall navigation, usability, and design elements like fonts and simple color schemes.

Tip 2: Incorporate advanced filters within the product range

Operating a sports wagering website that caters to diverse sports and events means not every player will be engaged in everything you offer. In order to ensure a seamless UX, it’s essential to empower your audiences with the ability to view only what is included in their interest. By providing filters, you guarantee that they will consistently enjoy a positive practice, increasing the likelihood of them returning for more.

Tip 3: Include a bonus engine

Such systems serve as excellent motivators to keep your users involved and enthusiastic about using your platform. They may also serve as inducements for users to share their enthusiasm with other players. By suggesting enticing rewards, such as discounts on sports events, free bets, VIP memberships, welcome bonuses, and more, you will be able to rapidly generate traffic and enlarge your betting business. This strategy not only enhances user retention but also fuels the growth and success of your platform.

Tip 4: Cultivate effective customer service

The next step toward achieving success as an online casino operator is the establishment of robust customer service protocols, aimed at securing customer contentment and driving up retention rates. Providing accurate and helpful information about products, services, pricing, and policies to customers should be the main priority, so they can make informed decisions. Make sure you offer 24/7 support, that the client’s issues are addressed accordingly, properly taken care of and resolved.


FAQ

How much does it cost to start an online casino?

The initial budget to debut a sportsbook website from 0 could range from approximately $10,000 to $100,000 or more. However, keep in mind that this is a rough estimate, and the actual cost can be different based on various factors.

Is starting a sportsbook profitable?

Starting a sportsbook can be a lucrative venture, and when done correctly with sufficient capital, it stands among the most secure investment options. Nevertheless, it’s not a suitable pursuit for everyone, and its legality varies depending on the region.

Is it easy to start a sports betting website?

In any case, commencing a sportsbook platform is not an easy task and requires careful planning, dedication, and a commitment to licit and ethical practices. It’s essential to thoroughly overview the industry, consult legal experts, and have a comprehensive business plan before venturing into this space. Alternatively, you could explore partnerships with existing betting platforms or consider white-label solutions that bring pre-built platforms that you can customize to some extent.

Conclusion

Managing an online sportsbook presents a multifaceted endeavor. It takes careful work to adhere to a variety of norms and regulations while drawing in and retaining customers.  However, if you’ve decided to take on the task, you may find the experience to be quite rewarding, especially if you work with the best B2B for your sportsbook business.

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