Desktop betting interfaces
When you bet on the Net, having an easy-to-use layout to work with on PC or Mac makes life a hell of a lot easier. Thus, we feel it is always worth taking a good look around a betting website before you commit to putting down any cash or personal details.
Can you find everything you’re looking for, or are certain pages difficult to get to? Is the visual layout clean and easy on the eye, or do you find the design a bit ugly and cumbersome? Does it provide complete form guides, live countdown clocks for race times, and other useful extras? The answers to these kinds of questions often sort out the best bookies from the rest.
Take Bet 365, for example. As soon as you pull up the homepage, everything you need is right in front of you. The layout is neat and free of clutter, and an absence of spammy advertising means most of the space is devoted to upcoming racing markets and sports fixtures. The menus are clear yet extensive and the virtual bet slip could not be simpler to use, while promotional info, customer support and other important resources are all easy to find. This is what a great online bookmaker looks like.
Best mobile bookmaker apps for 2017
Mobile betting has taken the gambling world by storm in the last few years, with more and more punters opting to place real cash wagers via their smartphone and tablet devices. If you want the freedom to bet on the go, it is essential you choose an Internet bookmaker which offers a simple yet sophisticated mobile gambling platform for your operating system.
The best mobile bookies offer dedicated apps for both iOS and Android devices, as well as browser-based mobile wagering for alternative brands like Windows Phone and BlackBerry. These mobile apps and in-browser betting platforms feature reliable touch interfaces for quick and easy navigation, and should always give you access to the same range of betting markets as the desktop site.
Accepted currencies & online banking methods
The best Internet bookies offer a diverse range of highly secure methods for depositing and withdrawing funds from your online betting account. First and foremost, however, you want to make sure the site accepts your local currency. UK bookmaker William Hill runs operations all over the globe and is set to re-enter the Australian betting market in February 2015, which makes it a great option for punters using British pound sterling (GBP), the Euro (EUR), the Australian dollar (AUD) and many other currencies worldwide.
When it comes to getting real money in and out of your account, the leading gambling sites support numerous trusted banking methods. The MasterCard and Visa credit cards are accepted just about everywhere, along with Maestro and Visa Debit, while secure e-wallets such as Skrill, Neteller and PayPal are widely available as well. Many sites also cater for prepaid cash vouchers – namely Ukash and PaySafeCard – and direct bank transfers via providers like Citadel Direct (Europe) and POLi (Australia and New Zealand).
Most of these options require no additional transaction fees and allow for instant deposits, which means you can start betting as soon as you confirm your transaction. Wire transfers are also generally accepted, but can take several business days to process. Many top-ranked betting sites also support electronic funds transfers (EFT) and bank cheques for withdrawals, and telegraphic transfers for international banking.
Sign-up bonuses, free bets & special promotions
Welcome bonuses are a nice way to start things off at a new online bookmaker, as they essentially allow you to have a free hit just for signing up. These usually come in the form of bonus bets, where the house will match your first cash deposit with extra credits up to a certain amount. For example: if we joined Bet 365 and added $100 on our initial transaction, they might award us a $100 free bet.
Respected international bookmakers like WilliamHill.com and Ladbrokes.com run heaps of regular weekly promotions and other special offers throughout the year, so you can potentially score thousands of bucks in free betting cash by signing up with several such sites. We must stress, however, that many of these deals are subject to wagering requirements and other terms and conditions, which is why we recommend always reading the fine print carefully before accepting any 2018 online betting bonus.
How do I know if a betting site is secure?
There are a few key criteria you should look for when it comes to online betting security:
Does it use a certified 128-bit SSL (Secure Socket Layer) digital encryption? This is the industry standard for protecting your personal information and bank details when gambling online. If you see logos bearing phrases like “VeriSign Secured” and “Thawte SSL Certified” on the homepage, that’s a very good sign.
Is it fully licensed by a recognised gaming authority? If a bookmaker doesn’t have a gambling license, then it isn’t legal. If you’re in the United Kingdom, for instance, make sure the site is regulated by the Gambling Commission. Every online gaming operator should have a link to its license information somewhere on the site.
Does it employ trusted ID verification methods such as VEDA Advantage? All Internet betting operators should fully verify its customers’ identities before making any payments, in order to satisfy international anti-fraud and money laundering laws. Online methods like VEDA and Edentiti make this process as convenient as possible.
Customer service & technical assistance
Any real cash gambling website that doesn’t pride itself on customer service is not worth your time. Leading bookmaker brands like William Hill and Ladbrokes run excellent 24/7 support systems, which include dedicated hotlines for racing, sports betting and general queries, live Web chat for instant assistance, email support, and even fax and snail mail details. Some sites run Skype support as well.
In short, the best online bookies in 2017 can be contacted in just about any way imaginable for any issue you might possibly have – day and night, all year round.