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10 Key Steps to Take to Prepare Yourself for Betfair Trading

Martin Futter's picture
Jun 04, 2020

Part one of this blog series can be found here! https://betfairtradingcommunity.com/en/blog/betfair-trading-holy-trinity-part-1-pre-match-research

So in the last post (read it by clicking the link above) I introduced this trading series as the 'Holy Trinity' of Betfair trading, by this I mean that the three key metrics I mentioned in the previous article are what will help differentiate the men from the boys! (Or women from the girls of course).

They are:

1. Proper Pre-Match Research

2. Using inplay stats and the 'eye' test

3. Including motivating factors and situational advantages.

Today's focus will be on pre-match research and the 10 steps I take to prepare my trades.

I also hope that I can persuade the non-believers (of which there are a surprising amount!) that preparing your trades is very important.

It is an essential part of most pro-traders daily routine. 

Now, if you agree that pre-match research is a vital part of any evaluation on a trade then you can skip the next paragraph but if not then please read this and try to be elightened.

Why research a trade?

I was astounded this week when in my preview video for this series I got a lot of comments that suggested pre-match reasearch was not needed when trading. I had no idea it was a controversial statement as, having used it myself (and having watched my father use it for the past two decades) to have great success, I had assumed that it was almost written it stone. Admittedly, it was the online keyboard warriors making the comments rather than our members but still it was rather shocking to see such naivety in such an unforgiving profession as Betfair trading. The reason we prepare our trades is to arm ourselves with as much knowledge as we can to make the best decisions possible when making the trade. It is that simple! To go into a trade 'blind' with no prior knowledge, with no thought about the conditions in which you are entering is, in my view, wreckless at best and will ultimately lead to failure in the long run. To use examples from the business world - is there anything that happens in serious work conditions that does not involve prior research? When you apply for a job you have an interview to ask about your history and employers will run a background check. When you start a business it is common practice to create a business plan, a vast amount of that document will be research and background work. Every predictive model that is used in business starts by looking at the background information and the trends of what has happened in the past. So why on earth would Betfair trading be any different? The simple answer is that it isn't. If a trader does well without doing any background work on their trading, more power to them, but I would be very skeptical of that. I will finish this off by saying it can do no harm, there is no downside to doing your due diligence when trading, it can't hurt your trading but should rather empower it. Remember the wise saying 'fail to prepare and prepare to fail'. Don't 'wing it' with Betfair trading, trust me, the results will not be kind to you!

So moving on to the 10 key things I do before I sit down to watch an event - 

What do I research pre-event before I add a potential trade to my daily list?

I will list a few of the things I look at before trading (specifically football, although a lot of this is universal across sports).

  • I grab my shortlist of selections for the day from the BTC software filters here: https://betfairtradingcommunity.com/en/statistics?advagg=0 as I have pre-set these filters I know it will select the games that statistically show games which I will possibly want to trade. 
  • I will also click on those games selected individually to asses the stats myself, obviously which stats you check will depend on what market you are trading but as I go for goals I want to see results where there were lots of goals! 
  • Once I have my trading shortlist the next thing I look at is if the teams playing are mid season (I do not trade a league until a few games into a season or a couple of games before the end of that season).
  • I then check to see that both teams will be motivated to win, do they both need the points? This is more of an issue the later into the season you get, early on it is not as important as teams should be motivated. (A quick glace at the league table and how many games are played a season will tell you this)
  • I then look for key team news, are the line ups likely to be the same as last time out or are there significant injuries/suspensions. (Official club twitters are good for team news)
  • What are the weather conditions? Extreme weather is more likely to produce unpredictable outcome not releated to past performance, so I would leave those games alone. (A quick google of the weather forecast will do the trick here.
  • Is there any money in the market? I check this to see if it is going to be easy enough to get matched at good prices, some leagues will simply not be worth trading in general but this can change depending on how many games are on that day. (Check the total matched on the match odds market a couple of hours before KO)
  • I check the odds. Some matches will clearly not have any value at any point, even if they look good statistically. For example, if I want to back goals in a game like Real Madrid vs Real Betis but the markets are really short prices on goals (I.e. sub 1.50 odds for over 2.5 goals before KO) then I know this match is not one for me to trade, there will be no value in the goal lines here if backing goals.
  • I then set out my trading plan, I write the times of the games down on paper (I'm old school!) but you can do this on your phone or pc, the important thing is to plan your time trading that day. I find this helps with time management to no end. As we all know time is money! 
  • I'm ready to roll! 

So here I have given 10 key steps and briefly explained them. The truth is most of these steps take less than a minute of research and won't take you long to do. You will see the benefit of them when you are able to filter out potential 'trap' games that may have caught you out had you not properly prepared that day.

As ever, I hope this advice helps! That is what I am here for to help you. I'll be back next time and will be covering the importance of using in-play stats to aide your trading.

If you have any questions just chat to me in your personal trading thread on our forum or email me: info@betfairtradingcommunity.com 

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