Gambling on eSports matches keeps growing as fast if not even faster than the industry of eSports. What was once an informal betting system conducted mainly between acquaintances and friends is quickly becoming an industry in which hundreds of millions of funds are risked on a yearly basis by millions of punters hailing from every corner of the earth.
With that massive growth comes a great deal of uncertainty among the punters who are interested in eSports betting.
Even if you are very familiar with the game that is being played, the gambling world of that game might still be an entirely different one. Moreover, if you are not more enthusiastic than a devoted gamer, you may have questions about both the game and how to bet on it.
Our site is designed to answer all of your questions and concern. You should still feel free to contact us with suggestions for extra items to add to the site or if you would like any additional information.
What Should I Look for in an eSports Sportsbook?
We believe that there are several fundamental questions that you should ask yourself before you choose a bookmaker to place your eSports bet at. They are:
- Can I trust the website?
- How good are the prices for eSports wagers?
- What incentives do they offer?
- What type of bets can I place on eSports events?
Can the Bookmaker be Trusted?
Figuring this outcomes down to several simple tests. They are the following:
The first one is the test of regulation. Which jurisdiction issued the license for the bookmaker? You can find this information in the footer of the site. If you are not familiar with the jurisdiction, you should do a small amount of research. If there have been issues with sites that are regulated under the same authority, you will not need to do more than a simple Google search to find out.
We also advise you to check out the other sites that are licensed under the same authority. If you are familiar with some of the brands, you can check if there were any customer problems with them.
The second one is the test of social proof. Check out what real people are saying about the bookmaker on review sites and social media. Moreover, what type of accessibility and availability does the website offer regarding customer support and social media accounts? Usually, you can tell the difference between an active, credible site just by checking out these simple characteristics.
The next one is the test of experience. You can start small at a bookmaker that has passed the initial two tests. You can make the smallest deposit and place the smallest wager. If you have any problems or questions, you can pose them to the customer service and gauge the sincerity and quality of the response. Moreover, if you do not like anything about your experience, you should definitely move on. There are dozens of other bookmakers that would love to have you.
Are the Prices for eSports Good?
The odds on a given match will not be the same at each sportsbook. You will want to do a bit of shopping to determine which bookmaker tends to offer the odds that you find most favorable.
You should be asking this question on a regular basis, as the markets are dynamic and the bookmakers regularly get worse or better at predicting particular markets.
What Incentives does the Bookie Offer?
Price is only one part of the equation regarding getting the best value for a wager. Websites offer players, particularly new ones, a variety of bonuses and promotions that might improve the payout you receive from betting.
You have to be aware of 3 crucial promotional components :
- Deposit bonuses.
- VIP / cash back programs.
- Free bets.
What Types of Wagers Can I Place on eSports?
At this stage of the game, the quantity and quality of available wagers vary from bookmaker to bookmaker quite a lot.
It is obvious that the dominant form of gambling right now is match betting, which is gambling on the outcome of an event. However, some of the leading bookmakers in the space like Unikrn and Pinnacle experiment with live betting, which is gambling on a match while it is still occurring.
In-play markets are currently among the most complex to maintain and develop in traditional sports, and it might take some time before robust in-play betting options are available for a much wider array of eSports events.
You should also consider quantity, since not every sportsbook offers odds on every event. Some bookmakers like Betway and bet365 are constantly increasing their cover, while others like William Hill seem to be taking a wait and see approach to filling their tab.
Is eSports Betting Legal?
This is quite the complex question that is not possible to answer for every user in every situation. The crucial thing to keep in mind is that you, as a punter, are subject to the regulations and laws of your jurisdiction. So, if a specific type of gambling on sports is not legal in your country, then the same might go for eSports betting.
Who Regulates Betting on eSports?
Currently, there is no main regulatory body for eSports. However, there are a number of entities and leagues like ESL that cooperate to specific degrees. As eSports keep growing, it is likely that we will see the development of a single regulatory structure. However, the worldwide nature of the activity will complicate that undertaking to a specific degree.
When it comes to the regulation of the gambling bookies, the answer varies by the sportsbook. Each is regulated by the jurisdiction in which they are located. There are quite a lot of licensing hubs for online betting, including the Isle of Man and the United Kingdom.
What is the Legal Age for Betting on eSports?
There is no universal answer, as the minimum betting age varies by jurisdiction. There are sites that set their own rules for minimum age.
How Do I Know if the Matches are Fair or Not?
The question of fairness in eSports is a legitimate one. There have been several high-profile accusations of match-fixing, including some in the highest level of the industry.
If there is not some type of assurance that the game is fair, punters have almost no reason to risk their money on the outcome, and even small amounts for other purposes.
There are several factors that help to make sure and affirm the fairness of eSports games. They are the following:
- The growth of esports prize pools – Since more money is on the line, the appeal of a financial bonus to throw the game does not exist.
- The entrance of traditional bookmakers – Fighting fraud is one of the main occupations of bookmakers. As they enter the market for esports betting, they bring their substantial expertise and resources to bear on the problem of match-fixing.
- Increased regulation – Since there are many tournaments with increased prize pools, gambling comes with increased regulations and attention. Both increase the risk with match-fixing and decrease the ability of fixers to hide in plain sight.
How Can I Make a Deposit to an eSports Betting Site?
ESports betting is identical to traditional betting on sports. You can fund your account and withdraw from it using just about any major financial method.
Using Debit or Credit Card to Deposit
Debit and credit cards are the most popular ways to deposit for gambling. Punters like this option because it is easy to use and it is secure. The downside comes for Amex users, who usually find themselves not being able to deposit by card. Moreover, there might be a low deposit limit or other restrictions on how many deposits you can make per day.
Can I use Bitcoin?
Not universally, and not with many of the massive, bookies that take bets on esports. However, there are smaller bookmakers, some of which specialize in gambling on eSports, which allow their users to deposit and withdraw with Bitcoin.
Other Methods for Deposits
Extra methods for funding your bookie account include:
- E-wallets like Skrill and Neteller.
- Wire transfers.
- ACH transfers.
- Money deposits at a land-based location.
- Other money transfer services.
Size of the eSports Market
Because of the rapid growth and private nature of betting on eSports, there are no precise figures that can capture the market’s size.
However, based on our experience and research, we can provide you with some general guidelines for thinking about the market size, as well as where it is likely to head in the future.
How Many People are Gambling on eSports?
With a reported 145 million fans and audiences worldwide for the big eSports events, it is a safe bet that there are more than 1 million users betting real money on eSports online in 2017.
What Amount of Money is Gambled Worldwide?
We think that bet365 is the leading traditional bookmaker in the eSports industry, and they have taken millions of bets on eSports. Even at a modest average bet and using other assumptions, we are still talking about a total amount gambled at bookmakers that will exceed 10 billions during this year.
We expect that well-funded bookies like Unikrn will quickly pose a competitive challenge to bet365’s current dominance and that other mainstream bookies will grow in the market as 2018 unveils.
Which Regions Bet Most on eSports?
There is a lack of clear data that prohibits us from giving you a definitive answer. However, it is our belief that gambling on eSports follows a similar interest distribution to the one which is displayed on the general level of participation in eSports.
In that case, the regions for esports betting are:
- Asia – 61%
- The United States – 23%
- Europe – 12%
- Rest of the world – 4%
How Can I Place Bets on eSports?
There are various ways that you can bet on the outcome of eSports competitions. We have grouped them into four categories. They are the following:
- Traditional bookmaker betting.
- Fantasy sports.
- Item betting.
- Social gambling.
Traditional Bookmaker Betting
Here we are talking about gambling on eSports with a traditional bookie – the same way that you would place a wager on a football game. The mass of major online bookies now offers at least a small amount of betting on eSports. However, the quantity and quality of the offering can greatly vary by each bookmaker.
- The main advantage of betting on eSports at a traditional bookie is that you can place your wager with confidence. You know that this is a credible operator behind the site that is taking your bet.
- The downside of gambling at eSports betting sites is that many websites are still getting to know the industry, which means that you might find an inferior selection of markets.
Two of the traditional sportsbooks that have already embraced eSports betting are bet365 and Pinnacle.
This genre of betting is particularly popular in the United States, where there is limited access to quality sportsbooks. However, thanks to a federal law called Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, fantasy-based gambling enjoys a partial exemption from the betting laws in the USA.
Traditional betting usually has to do with the outcome of a game or event. However, fantasy gambling sees opposing players build lineups for events – similar to what people do for fantasy baseball or football. The winning lineup is the one that performs the best during the course of the event.
This is the other main difference between fantasy sports and traditional bookmaker betting. Instead of gambling against the house, you are betting against other punters.
- The main advantage is that it is readily available and considered legal in the majority of America.
- The disadvantage is that it is not the same as placing a wager on the outcome of a match. Moreover, there are not many options.
Many players do not consider this activity as “gambling,” there is almost no restriction on who can participate, and in some jurisdictions, such betting represents a reasonable opportunity for creative participants.