Betting Basics

Guide to Live Betting

Want to figure out how to start live betting during games? Don't be overwhelmed — check out our guide and start small.

March 27, 2024

Sports betting is booming in popularity in the U.S., and there are always new wrinkles that make it even more exciting. One of the most intriguing aspects of sports betting is live betting, which is also quickly growing fast. Not only is it exciting to place a bet during the action — it can also potentially be more profitable.

At Tipico, more than 70 percent of our sportsbook’s handle so far in 2024 has been from live betting — nearly a 20 percent jump from 2023. Our bettors are increasingly getting into the fast and furious fun excitement of real-time wagering on sports in progress!

The Essentials of Live Betting

Live betting involves simply placing wagers on a game or match after it has begun. Also called in-play betting, live betting has become increasingly popular, both for bettors who want to hedge their prematch wagers or for those who want to take advantage of ideal real-time odds on the outcome of the game or player props.

Unpacking Live Betting: What It Is and How It Works

With prematch bets – such as a moneyline wager on which team will win – you are locked in to that bet, win or lose. With live betting, you can make wagers throughout the event, such as what the halftime score will be in a football game, or who will win the next set in a tennis match, what the next batter will do in a baseball game, and more. Depending on the sportsbook you are using, there are tons of live betting options for many events.

The Advantages of Live Betting

Live betting allows bettors to get into the flow of a game and get the feel of how teams and players are doing. For some, that is more advantageous than doing prematch betting, when you have rely more on intuition and research.

Live betting also allows you to capitalize on favorable odds. You might be able to quickly place a bet on great in-play odds before a game’s outcome becomes clear.

Keep in mind that you can also build a live betting parlay in many cases, just as you would in pregame action. That can be a really fun and profitable way to make some bucks while you watch your multi-leg wagers!

Understanding and Interpreting Dynamic Odds

Odds can change very quickly during a game, depending on how players and teams are performing. Injuries, coaching decisions and even the weather can also influence how sportsbooks change the odds. You will need to be fast if you see the odds you like — they’re bound to change at any second.

Types of Live Bets: Exploring the Options

There are many live betting options across various sporting events, including:

  • Football – Who will score the next touchdown? Who will catch the next pass? You can also place bets on the total points scored – over or under – and also moneyline and spread bets as you would pre-game.
  • Baseball – How many hits will a certain player get? Which team will score the next run? Will the next pitch be a strike or ball?
  • Basketball – Who will score the next basket? Which team will win the quarter? How many rebounds, points or assists will certain players get?
  • Tennis – Who will win the next set? How many games will the next set go?

These are just a few of the many live betting options available at any given time. If you want to keep the excitement going as you follow a game, live betting might be right up your alley.

At Tipico, our most popular leagues for live betting have been NBA, NCAA Basketball and Major League Baseball, all of which have all-time handle amounts more than double that of NFL and NCAA football.

But it’s not just the big-name leagues and sports that are attracting our live betting crowd. Table tennis and European basketball leagues have also seen strong live betting action.

Moneyline, spread and game total live betting are by far our most popular live bets at Tipico, but a few tennis and table tennis-specific set bets are strongly present in the top 10 as well.

Live Betting Strategies: Making Smart Decisions

Here are some strategies and tips to consider in live betting:

  • Odds will change quickly. If you see odds that you like, jump on it and don’t hesitate, because likely those odds won’t remain for long.
  • You might want to hedge your prematch bets, if they aren’t looking good. For example, say your moneyline bet is not working out, then to salvage your losses you might consider live betting, since there will be many options during the game to get some wins.
  • During garbage time in a game, NBA players will insert players who don’t normally get a lot of minutes. There might be good props available there. The same thing applies to NFL games.
  • Watch for a player who gets hot, especially during a basketball game. If you get a feeling early that the player is going to score a lot of points, maybe it makes sense to wager on that player in the first quarter.
  • To the previous point, some players seem to do better in certain situations. Patrick Mahomes is a great fourth-quarter player in big games, Stephen Curry seems to have his biggest moments at home in playoff games, etc. Knowing player tendencies — how certain players perform at home or on the road, in big games or in meaningless games – can really help you score big with live betting.

The Risks and Challenges of Live Betting

Live betting can be fun, fast and furious, but be careful that you don’t let it get out of hand. Let’s say for instance that your live bets keep failing — it might be tempting to do even more live bets on the same game just to break even or mitigate big losses. But that could lead to even bigger losses. You need to have a betting budget and stick to it, and that’s advice that you need to live by in all gambling instances.

Also, if you are interested in doing live betting for a particular game, make sure you are very cognizant of the constantly-shifting odds for outcomes, in-game scenarios and player props.

Leveraging Technology for Live Betting: Tools and Platforms

Tipico has a great app to make your live betting experience amazing — register or log in here. Tipico also has the customer’s interest at the forefront of our business, which is why we launched our Fair Play Pledge, which is Tipico’s “promise to put the customer first with its clear communication and accessibility of odds, rewards, and safety resources so that they fully understand what they’re betting on.”

Embracing the Dynamic World of Live Betting

Log in or register at Tipico now to explore the exciting world of live betting. It might be best to try a few low-money live bets on various sports to get the feel of how it works and get in some practice before you dive in deeper! We want you to enjoy the fun and exciting world of live betting in a safe and responsible way. Remember, set a budget and stick with it!

Check out our live betting options if you are in one of our four active states – Ohio, New Jersey, Colorado and Iowa!

Alex Valdes
Alex Valdes is Web Content Manager at Tipico North America. He has written, edited and performed user and site analysis at MoneyTalksNews, NBC Sports, MSN, Bing, MSNBC, as well as newspapers and magazines.