When you place sports bets with certain bookmakers, you are often using sophisticated betting software in the process. Several operators work in tandem with these providers in order to provide a first-class betting service to their customers, especially when it comes to In-Play betting.
While it is easy to overlook, a solid software platform can greatly influence the user experience, especially when it comes to online betting sites. While unique bingo software suppliers might get more publicity, the top betting software providers quietly go about the work of producing high-end gambling experiences for all who join their online bookies.
Online casino and bingo software suppliers might get all the attention but don't sleep on these betting software providers, they might just surprise you. Here now is a glimpse into some of the hallmarks of the top-tier betting software providers.
One size doesn’t necessarily fit all when it comes to betting software providers. That’s because each company provides a different service. Some might offer a trading platform, others will literally provide a bookmaking service including odds, while there are those that provide sports data which is especially pertinent for In-Play betting.
Naturally, industry reputation is important and the actual bookmakers who work with each software provider can offer a recommendation all by itself. If we like betting with a particular betting site and it’s powered by certain software, then the two things go hand in hand.
If a software provider is actually supplying odds and white labelling their product, then it’s important that they hold a UK gambling license and that they are regulated accordingly. They don’t necessarily need to be trading directly to customers in order to need a license.
However, a software provider is supplying their betting products, we can always rate their user experience either directly or through a bookmaker website. Does the interface offer a clean betting experience, are the odds competitive and is the live data completely on point?
We can also look at the full product range that is being offered by that software provider. As each company has a big team of developers, they are always looking to innovate and create a new product that will be embraced in this vertical. Things like In-Play, Cash Out and Bet Builder are among the latest new releases.
In some cases, a software provider will be responsible for coming up with a bonus mechanism for their betting partners and we can look at how a free bet can be claimed and the process behind it. We also need to understand how accessible the products are because the aim is for them to always be user-friendly.
You might have noticed that bookmakers have different odds available for sporting events. This is because they might have different margins factored into their prices or it might be because they are using third-party providers who supply the markets and odds for a huge range of sporting events.
A company such as bet365 will use proprietary trading software to create their odds, while they also have an in-house team of traders who research the latest events and come up with prices that can be offered to customers. Naturally, these odds can be altered depending on the weight of money that comes for any of the selections.
Those betting sites that rely on software providers for their betting interface or prices have less control, although the bookmaker in question can still amend the odds that are being supplied and change the algorithm in accordance with their view of a sporting event. Some operators are keen to be aggressive and take on the favourites for certain sports.
The same applies to In-Play betting. You might find that certain bookmakers offer identical prices when the odds go live and that means they’re likely to be using a provider who specialise in In-Play betting odds. However, there might be a difference in the Cash Out value depending on how the bookies have decided to fix the prices.
In-Play betting continues to be the future of sports wagering and, for many customers, it’s the only type of betting that they know. Therefore, betting sites need to be on the ball and ensure that they can provide a first-class live betting service across a huge range of sports.
It’s not just the provision of live odds which attracts a betting customer. You also need to be able to stream live data pertaining to the sporting event in question, especially if there is no live streaming available. Suppliers such as Betradar actually provide a live data widget service which allows a bookie to house the information in the relevant sections.
Bookmakers need to be completely confident that the live information on their website is accurate and up-to-date. Therefore, the data stream needs to be in real-time and the same applies to the In-Play prices that are fed through from the odds providers.
Betting sites themselves will have a team of developers who are able to take the odds and data feeds and then house them in a presentable fashion on the website, through the mobile site and in the app. It’s a case of rerouting the data into the relevant section and making sure the bet functionality works.
Every bookmaker has now latched on to the fact that it’s a good idea to have live streaming of sporting events at their website. After all, what could be a better customer experience than being able to log into their betting account and watching a football match from start to finish without having to pay for the pleasure?
Having live streaming available is also great in terms of encouraging customers to bet In-Play on the events being shown at the bookmaker website. Live streams and In-Play odds go hand in hand, with an operator clearly aiming for customers to remain at the bookmaker website for as long as possible to increase the chances of them gambling.
There are many great examples of live stream providers and Betradar is clearly leading the way in terms of integrating this technology into a betting site, although a bookmaker also needs to secure a deal with the rights providers when it comes to the various sporting events. Sometimes there is a restriction on the number of bookies who can show the matches.
Whether you are betting through desktop, mobile or app, it’s imperative that you like the bookmaker’s website interface or you will go elsewhere to bet. Put simply, the interface is the site’s structure and the platform that is supplied when you look for the latest betting markets. It can also apply to In-Play betting where a betting site needs to house the odds in a way that is easily accessible.
There’s also the important matter of bet slip functionality. A customer should be able to load up their bet slip with selections and have an easy way of betting singles, multiples or another form of combination bet. They should also be able to see their latest bets and the corresponding Cash Out values.
Many software betting providers are behind the interface that you see at several bookmaker websites. In some cases, they provide the whole package including the interface and betting odds and you might start to recognise some similarities with how sports betting markets are now offered.
The betting software providers listed on this article all adhere to the latest UK regulations, while the appropriate firms also have a UK license, especially if they are supplying odds to bookmakers. However, that is not the case with every company that operates in the online gambling space and you should therefore be careful when you visit a new bookmaker website.
Here at Gambling.com, we constantly review the software providers and betting sites that are showcased to make sure that they still have a UK license from the United Kingdom Gambling Commission and operate within that strict framework that ensures customers have a fair and secure experience. Anyone that falls outside of these parameters will no longer be promoted.
Every developer has a different purpose and they create products according to their client basis. Therefore, you are sometimes comparing apples with oranges, although it also follows that a huge development company will have more resources when it comes to innovating new ideas and products that might interest the betting sites.
Betting software often forms the backbone of an overall sports betting service for a bookmaker. Indeed, virtually every betting site is reliant on betting software in some shape or form, whether it’s the bookmaker interface, the betting odds or the Live In-Play data that also includes the incorporation of live streaming.
This very much depends on whether the software developer is providing live odds and a white labelled solution to bookmakers. If this is the case, then they will be classed as an operator needing a UK license irrespective of whether they are actually trading directly to customers.
There’s no right answer on this one, although OpenBet are generally seen as the leading betting software developer in terms of providing an interface and betting odds, while Betradar are market leaders when it comes to the provision of live data. However, the landscape is always changing according to the needs of betting customers.
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