This article is aimed at people who have at least a basic understanding of sportsbook arbitrage. If you’re new to advantage play gambling be sure to check out this introductory article on matched betting.
I get a lot of emails asking: “Which arbing software is the best?”, or “how much should I pay for an arb finder?”.
They’re good questions, and I often deflect from giving my opinion as there really isn’t one answer that fits all. The scene is regularly changing, new software providers come and go, prices change and most importantly the bookies are always improving and varying their gubbing criterias.
To make things harder for the average arber, often the advertising on the arbing software’s own websites is incredibly spammy. Even the best, most reputable companies seem to feel it’s their duty to try and lure you in with the exaggerated promises of vast riches. How do you know which site to use when each one reminds you of fonejacker?
Over the years I have personally used a lot of different types of arbing software. But on top of that I have also have taught over 100 other arbers who have tried and errored their way through all sorts of techniques and programs. I doubt there’s a decent arb service out there that I haven’t had at least a play around with.
I will try and explain which ones I think are the best and why. But first I will examine the two biggest mistakes I see people make time after time.
What Not To Use
Free Arbing Software
This may sounds counter intuitive. Surely free is better? And you’d be right.. if your plan is to only ever place just one or two arbs.
The main problem is not that free arbing software is worse than the paid software (although they are). Rather it is that anybody can see the free arbs and anybody can bet on them. Whenever an arb appears on free arb finder, hundreds of would-be arbers bet on it. And the bookies notice.
The quickest way to get your accounts gubbed or closed down is to use a free arbing software.
Why do you think that the services are free? How do they make any money? Well the only way is through what are known as affiliate links. Basically a bookie will pay the arb finder a small fee for each customer they refer. This model only works if there are hundreds or thousands of people using the arbing software.
It’s all well and good saving on the monthly subscription fee, but is it really worth it if you’re giving up 90% of the profit by having your accounts gubbed so quickly?
That being said there are times when I do use free services. And that is if I don’t care about profiting from arbing – if I am simply taking advantage of a free bet.
Most free services (and some paid ones) are rip-offs of Oddsmonkey’s free matched betting odds comparison service called MBassist (as of 2017 you now need to sign up to access it). MBassist is great, but as the name suggests it is not meant for arbitrage. Instead, it is an odds comparison service designed to help you maximise your return from matched betting.
Really Expensive Arbing Software
So does that mean I should buy the most expensive software out there? It will surely be most exclusive and have the best functionality.
Well yes and yes. But, and it’s a big but, you can quite quickly get to a point where the amount you are spending on the software outweighs the extra exclusivity benefits.
If you’re paying a £500 a month subscription fee, it takes a lot of grunt work just to get the turnover away to break even.
By all means if you’re turning over £300,000 a month then you should be using the best. But hardly anyone turns over that amount, and if you do you probably already have some pretty good arbing software!
Plus these days the difference between the really expensive software and the affordable options really aren’t that far apart.
What To Get
For the Professional
RebelBetting was a new kid on the block back in 2009 and I remember exactly how excited we were. They were one of the first arb finders to offer dutches rather than just straight arbs against Betfair. A big improvement on anything that had come before.
I also remember that their first version of the software had a glitch in it that meant you could re-enter the free trial so it would keep resetting. Ahh, happy times. They eventually sent me a polite email commending us for finding the loophole and offering a discount on their monthly subscription. Fair play to them.
Since then they have gone from strength to strength and are now solidly considered one of the best. Lots of bookies, lots of sports, lots of markets.
It currently costs €129 a month, with hefty discounts if you purchase a longer contract (€69 a month if you pay for the year up-front). You can also purchase just one week for €39 if you want to try it out.
As a general guideline, if you expect to turn over £20,000 or more a month then I recommend RebelBetting.
The creme-de-la-creme of arb finders. Apart from a few really high-end services that have waiting lists, years long, this is the best.
For the Hobbyist
Remember how I was saying that MBAssist was a very good piece of free software for matched bettors? Well, the company that brought you MBAsist also have a premium, paid version. At only £15 a month OddsMonkey is an absolute bargain.
There are a lot less features than RebelBetting. For instance, there are no dutches, which removes 90% of the opportunities. And the arbs are all ‘simple’ arbs, which means you are likely to get gubbed quicker than a higher end service.
Update: OddsMonkey Premium now offers 2-way and 3-way dutching. Even better value.
But despite this, bang for buck, it is great value. You’re not going to get anything better for less than £50 a month and it beats looking for arbs manually.
On top of the great oddsmatcher, OddsMonkey also comes with a lot of other great features. They are especially useful if you also dabble in matched betting. There is the daily offers calendar.
When that screenshot was taken (19 April 2016), there were 16 offers with guides just for today! Totally over £200 in expected profit.
Update Feb 2017: Check out my updated Oddsmonkey review for 2017
They also have a very active forum with over 1,000 posts.
Betonvalue has been around for a long time, and you can tell. The website looks terrible and is full of flashing lights and eye-sores. It is a very complex piece of kit with over 180 different bookies feeding it. If you’re an arbitrage geek, you’ll love it.
But personally, I think it is too complex and clunky to use. I’m only mentioning it because it is so much cheaper than Rebelbetting. If you want something professional but can’t afford to shell out for the best, Betonvalue could be for you.
There are three levels of subscription of which the ‘Expert’ is probably the only one worth it. It cost €50 a month and for that you get access to everything, including all the bookies and every type of arb. The only issue is that it comes with a three-minute delay. But when you account for the time it takes to log into the websites, deposit and check the matches, that three minute delay isn’t long enough to truly matter.
Have you tried any of these and still prefer different arbing software? Please let me know!