Matchbook vs Betfair: which is the best betting exchange?

T&Cs apply | Wagering and T&Cs apply | Commercial content | New Customers Only | 18+

Many punters are still unaware of the advantages of a betting exchange, and which bookmakers to choose out of Matchbook and Betfair. Our comprehensive guide will give you all the information you need to pick the right one.

Betting exchange matchbook betfair
Bonus 0% Commission on All Sports for 30 days

7/10

£20 free bet

8/10

Betting markets 8/10 10/10
Special features 5/10 9/10
Commission 9/10 8/10
User experience 7/10 8/10
Overall 7.25/10 8.75/10
Sign-up here

Matchbook T&Cs:

18+. New Customers Only. Sign-up and get 0% commission on all sports for 30 days. Users must Enter Bonus Code ‘COMMFREE’ to avail of the offer. Only open to users who deposit via debit or credit card. T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org.

Betfair T&Cs:

New customers only, bet up to €/£20 on the Exchange and if your first bet loses, we’ll refund you €/£20 in Cash. Bet must be placed in first 7 days of account opening. T&Cs apply

What Is a Betting Exchange?

A betting exchange is not the same as a traditional bookmaker, instead, it provides a match-making service that combines bets made by backers and layers. When you place a bet you are doing it against another punter, instead of against the bookmaker itself.

The main advantage is simple: a bookie wants you to lose because you’re wagering against them, but with an exchange bet you are simply wagering against another player. In fact, because a bookie takes a commission from exchange bets, it’s to their advantage that you win more.

How do exchanges work?

The process is simple, one punter will place a wager on a particular outcome, known as a back bet. This is no different to a standard bet against a bookie’s odds.

The exchange then matches this back bet to another punter who believes this outcome will not happen. The sporting event will take place and at the end, the winning punter will take their money directly from the pool of money held by the operator, who guarantee there is enough to cover every outcome.

The advantage is you can have much more freedom in dictating your bets, meaning there is enhanced flexibility and the opportunity to win more money.

Review – Matchbook or Betfair

For starters, Betfair is the world’s largest betting exchange, while Matchbook is certainly way behind in terms of user-base. However, this does not mean it’s necessarily a worse option.

Welcome bonus- Matchbook

Both operators offer bonuses who are setting up an exchange account.

Betfair

  • £20 free bet

Key T&Cs:

New customers only, bet up to €/£20 on the Exchange and if your first bet loses, we’ll refund you €/£20 in Cash. Bet must be placed in first 7 days of account opening. T&Cs apply

Matchbook

  • 0% Commission on All Sports for 30 days

Key T&Cs: 

18+. New Customers Only. Sign-up and get 0% commission on all sports for 30 days. Users must Enter Bonus Code ‘COMMFREE’ to avail of the offer. Only open to users who deposit via debit or credit card. T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org.

Betting markets – Betfair

Unlike a normal review, we cannot compare the odds of each exchange market, because they’re determined by the punters at the time. However, we can analyse the range of betting markets available.

A crucial factor of betting exchanges is the liquidity of the market. In simple terms, the liquidity of a particular wager is the amount of money in lays and backs that is placed on an individual wager. If there is only £10 worth of liquidity on a selection, and you wish to wager £20 on it, you could still place your wager, but you would have have to wait for another punter to deposit £10 on the opposite resultfor it to be matched.

For large events, like a cup final or Ascot, you won’t have any trouble with liquidity because of the volume of punters who will be betting on the event, but for an obscure match, say a Russian 2nd division match, this is a different matter.

With Betfair the volume of available bets is huge, with markets running across dozens of sports, and right down to obscure leagues. The huge customer base means even a niche sport will have a good liquidity.

Matchbook still offers a huge range of markets, and the average exchange punter will never encounter any problems with finding their bet, but because of its smaller customer base the liquidity of their exchange bets and range of markets is still smaller than their rival.

betfairmarkets

Special features – Betfair

When it comes to special features, both operators offer customers a range of additional services.

Matchbook, being a smaller bookmaker, has a much smaller set of features, however. The main one is their “lounge”, which is essentially a blog with betting previews for selected upcoming events. While this is a helpful option to have, the average punter may well take their tips from other sources, or simply do their own research.

Betfair is the 3rd largest bookmaker in the UK and therefore offers considerably more to their customers. One of the best features available in their live streaming service, allowing users to watch a whole host of sports through Betfair.

They also offer a blog with match previews and betting insight, which can be accessed by everyone.

Live streaming is a game-changer for bookmakers and allows punters access to great quality HD streams without having to pay for Sky or Digital packages. For this reason alone Betfair wins on the special features debate.

Best user experience – Betfair

While it’s not always highest on punters’ priority list, the user experience is an important factor when choosing an operator.

Clunky and confusing website interfaces can make the experience long-winded and overly complicated, and more importantly, might mean you miss out on features that are poorly signposted on the nav bars.

Matchbook has often drawn criticism for its user-unfriendliness, and we had a similar experience. While it’s not impossible to use, Betfair’s interface is much more comfortable to navigate and it’s easier to see the range of bets available.

betfairexperience

Final Verdict – Betfair

While it’s a close call between the two operators, Betfair remains the best exchange market around. With a huge range of markets, live streaming and an excellent overall user experience their service is excellent.

However, don’t be too keen to dismiss Matchbook, especially if you are primarily interested in wagering on big events.

betfairlogo

Convinced? You can join Betfair using the button below!

18+ Play Responsibly begambleaware gamestop camcare