Fixed Odds vs. Spread Betting Odds | Sporting Index

What's The Difference Between Fixed Odds and Spread Betting Odds?

Sports fans have two exciting options at their disposal when considering which bets to place on an event. You can opt for traditional, fixed-odds betting, or delve into the wonderful world of sports spread betting. This article will explain the pros and cons of both options, and help you decide which appeals the most to you.

What is Fixed-Odds Betting?

A fixed-odds bet is a straightforward wager that comes with a predetermined win or loss. It is the most common form of betting. You can often choose from dozens of different fixed-odds bets on a particular game. As an example, you might decide to bet £10 on Liverpool to beat Chelsea at odds of 5/4. In that case, you would place the bet knowing that you stand to earn a £12 profit if successful or incur a £10 loss if unsuccessful.

Another fixed-odds bet would be over 3.5 goals in a match between AC Milan and Juventus at odds of 6/4. Once again, if you bet £10, you will expect a £15 profit if the game sees over 3.5 goals and a £10 loss if it sees fewer than 3.5 goals.

You can enjoy fixed-odds betting on all sorts of sports. For instance, you might decide to bet £20 on a horse to win a race at odds of 7/1. You would expect a £140 profit if it won the race, and a £20 loss if it failed to do so. Everything is set in stone, and there are no surprises.

What is Spread Betting?

Spread betting differs significantly from fixed-odds wagering, because your potential profit or loss in not set in stone. Fixed-odds betting has two potential outcomes – win or lose – whereas spread betting has a multitude of different potential outcomes. The ultimate size of your profit or loss is only revealed at the end of the game.


Sporting Index will make a series of predictions on a sporting event. You simply have to decide whether we have been too bold in our projections, or not bold enough. For example, we might predict that that will be 3.2-3.4 goals in a game between AC Milan and Juventus. You then have two options: sell at the lower end of the spread if you think it will be a low-scoring game, or you can buy at the upper end of the spread if you think it will be a high-scoring clash.


Let’s say you anticipate an open, entertaining clash, and you decide to buy at 3.4 for £20. If the game finishes 2-2, with 4 goals in total, you would earn £12 in profit. That is because your stake (the amount you wager) is multiplied by the difference between the price you bought at and the final result. In this case, 4 minus 3.4 equals 0.6, and 0.6 multiplied by £20 equals £12.

However, if it finished 3-2 to Juventus, with 5 goals in the match, you would earn a £32 profit, as 5 – 3.4 = 1.6 and 1.6 x £20 = £32. If there were 6 goals in the match, you would earn a £52 profit, while you would earn a £72 profit if there were 7 goals, and so on. Essentially, the more right you are, the larger your potential profit.

However, if your prediction is incorrect, you will suffer a loss. If the game finished 2-1 to AC Milan or 3-0 to Juventus, with 3 goals in total, you would lose £8. That is because the total goals would be 0.4 lower than the price you bought at, and 0.4 is multiplied by your £20 stake to calculate your loss. If there were only 2 goals in the match, you would lose £28, and so on. Lots of bettors like the excitement and variety that comes with spread betting, but you have to be careful.

What are the Advantages of Fixed-Odds Betting?

Fixed-odds betting can heighten the excitement you experience when watching any sporting event unfold. A horse race becomes far more entertaining when you have money riding on one of the runners. However, it also gives you control over your bankroll. You know exactly how much you stand to win or lose on any bet, which many sports fans find reassuring.

You can choose from a wide variety of fixed-odds betting options. It is the oldest and most common form of wagering, so it has been finetuned for many years, resulting in lots of betting markets that people find appealing. You can bet on games before they begin, and then bet in-play while the action takes place. You will also be presented with lots of long-term markets, known as futures bets or antepost bets. The betting limits available are very broad, so fixed-odds betting suits all players, and you can enjoy some great bonuses.

What are the Advantages of Spread Betting?

One key advantage of fixed-odds betting is that it provides the opportunity to earn several times your stake if your prediction proves to b astute. For example, let’s say you were to sell at 42 on Joe Root’s total runs in an innings and he was removed for a duck. You would then earn 42 times your stake in profit. However, you have to be careful, because you could lose several times your stake if he hit more than 42 runs.

Another great advantage to spread betting is that it keeps you entertained until the final whistle. Going back to that example of AC Milan vs. Juventus, if you bet on over 3.5 goals, you would be celebrating if AC Milan went 3-1 up in the 60th minute, as your bet would have paid off. However, your interest might then fade. If you had bought at 3.4 in a spread bet instead, you would remain gripped until the end of the match, as every additional goal scored would boost your profit.

Yet another advantage to spread betting is that it provides unique options that you will not find elsewhere. A great example if the Starting Prices markets at a horse racing meeting. We will make a prediction on the cumulative odds of every winning horse on the card. If you expect the favourites to flourish, you can sell at the lower end of the spread. If you think it will be a day for underdogs, buy at the top end. The more right you are, the greater your profit.

Shirt Numbers is another popular spread betting option that you will not find elsewhere. This is a prediction on the combined shirt numbers worn by every goalscorer in a game. There are hundreds of unique spread betting markets available on football, cricket, tennis, rugby, darts, American football, basketball, and lots of other sports.

How Do Long-Term Spread Bets Differ from Fixed-Odds Bets?

You can place a fixed-odds bet on lots of different events, such as the winner of the Champions League, the Super Bowl, Wimbledon, or the Ashes. As is always the case, you know exactly how much you stand to win or lose. For example, if you bet £30 on Emma Raducanu to win Wimbledon at 6/1, you know that you stand to earn a £180 profit if successful or lose £30 if she fails to lift the trophy.

Spread betting gives you more options. For example, our Six Nations Tournament Index awards 60 points to the winner, 40 points to the runner-up, 20 points to the team that finishes third, 10 points to the team that finishes fourth, and zero points to the remaining teams. You might then be quoted a spread of 36-39 on England. If you think they will enjoy a strong tournament, you can buy at 39, and if you think they will struggle, you can sell at 36.

If you were to buy at 39 and England won the tournament, you would earn 21 times your stake in profit. If they finished second, you would earn 1 times your stake, essentially doubling your money. However, if they were to finish third, you would lose 19 times your stake. Once again, nothing is fixed in this market, but there are just five potential outcomes.

Can You Place Fixed-Odds Bets and Spread Bets in One Place?

Sporting Index offers both fixed-odds bets and spread bets on a wide variety of sporting events each week. That makes us unique. There is a large fixed odds betting section at our site, and a vast spread betting section too. This provides you with an extremely large selection of betting options on each sporting event.

Many bettors like to take advantage of both fixed-odds betting and spread betting in tandem. Some sporting events feel more suited to a fixed-odds wager, whereas at other times you might feel confident in a particular spread bet. You can enjoy both with just one account at Sporting Index.

How Can You Enjoy Spread Betting Responsibly?

Spread betting is riskier than fixed-odds betting. For that reason, many people stick to placing fixed-odds wagers. However, you can mitigate some of the risks by choosing sensible stakes. For example, if you were to sell at 2.6 goals on the Total Goals Index on a football match, the most you could lose would be 2.6 times your stake.

If you were to sell at 38 runs in a Player Runs Index on a cricket match, you could lose several times your stake if that player were to put in a very strong performance. For that reason, it would make sense to choose a much smaller stake for the Player Runs Index.

You can tailor your bet amounts accordingly when it comes to low-scoring sports like football and high-scoring sports like cricket, rugby and basketball. You can also start off with smaller stakes while learning the ropes and then play for larger amounts when you grow comfortable with each spread betting market.

Check out our broad selection of spread betting options and fixed odds betting markets today to find markets that appeal to you!

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