Why You Should Shop Around When Choosing An Ohio Sportsbook

Written By Dave Briggs on January 1, 2023 - Last Updated on June 7, 2024
Ohio Sportsbook Sign-Up Bonuses

Professional gamblers say Ohio sports bettors would be wise to follow one important tip before jumping into the state’s new legal, regulated online market:

Sign up for as many Ohio sports book apps as possible and take advantage of the generous offers while operators are competing for your business.

With 16 operators fully licensed to go live in the Buckeye State, those looking to capitalize on the opening of online sports betting in Ohio will benefit most by fully exploring their options.

Ohio sportsbook apps offer big bonus bets & promos

Ohio sportsbooks will pay for your business with lucrative welcome bonuses. Pro bettors say you should grab as many bonuses as possible to maximize your probability of being a successful Ohio sports bettor.

That means, plan to sign up for all the Ohio sportsbook apps. Ontario-based sports bettor Garnet Barnsdale explained why:

“The absolute No. 1 reason why bettors should sign up for as many books as possible is because of all the bonuses, bonus bets and odds boosts offered initially,” Barnsdale said.

Even after the initial customer acquisition phase waned in Ontario, Barnsdale said he continued to receive boosts and bet credits, which he takes advantage of most weeks.

Professional sports bettor and gambling law professor Harley Redlick added:

“Open up as many accounts as you can get and max the bonuses. In the ideal situation, if you’re a novice bettor, open up accounts at like six different sportsbooks. A lot of them have their opening bonus bets where they give you your bet back that you lost. Let’s say two of them, you lose your bets and then four of them, you win either your bet or your bonus bets, then you’ve got four well-funded accounts and you can start line shopping in those four accounts and go from there.”

Here’s what seven live Ohio online sportsbooks are currently offering:

Bettors who sign up for all seven apps can put up to $2,970 in their sports betting accounts. Simply click the above links to sign up for each operator.

Line shopping at Ohio sportsbooks is essential

Before placing a bet, it’s important to look for the best possible return. This is called line shopping. And it’s no different than searching retail stores or the internet for the best prices on products you want to buy.

Moreover, in terms of Ohio sports betting, line shopping will help you become a profitable sports bettor.

For example, say you want to bet on the Cleveland Browns or Cincinnati Bengals. Check all of the operators to see which one is offering the best line on the game you want to bet. Sometimes, you can get at 5% better return just by betting with the operator offering the best line.

See for yourself. Visit PlayOhio’s odds pages for the Browns, Bengals, Cavaliers and Blue Jackets and see the odds-on offers for upcoming games.

Pro bettors say line shopping makes a huge difference in the following ways:

  • If you’re a losing bettor, you will lose less.
  • Bettors on the edge of becoming winning bettors can get over the hump into the black.
  • If you already win, you will win more.

“If you’re a regular bettor hoping for or expecting long-term profit, you should concern yourself with getting the best price possible every time you make a bet,” Barnsdale said.

Key to beating the sportsbooks long-term

Professional sports bettor Rob Pizzola said line shopping is one of the few ways bettors can beat the sportsbooks long-term. It’s a simple matter of probability.

“If you’re betting the NFL, pretty much all sportsbooks are offering -110 spreads,” Pizzola said. “Your break-even point is 52.4%. So, that means you have to win at least 52.4% to not lose money on the NFL at -110. Now if you’re line shopping and you have five, six, seven, eight types of books, you’re going to start to find the side you want to bet at, at much lower numbers, -102 or, in some cases, +100. Now you’ve gone from taking a break-even point of 52.4% and, if you’re betting into a +100 line, your break-even point is now 50%.

“That’s much more accomplishable for someone. Even if you’re a coin-flipper and you know nothing about sports and you’re just picking random games, you’re still much more likely to win when you only need to win 50% of the time rather than 52.5.”

Barnsdale also knows from experience how much line shopping has helped his bottom line.

“Getting -110 vs. -115 may not seem like much, but it will add up over time and can be the difference between long-term profit or loss,” Barnsdale said. “To this day, I still use five sites regularly and price shop.”

Different apps have different specialties

There is another reason to open as many Ohio online sports betting accounts as possible. Each Ohio sportsbook app and operator excels in different areas.

For instance:

  • DraftKings is best for live betting (betting on games in real time).
  • FanDuel is the best for same-game parlays. Some sportsbooks restrict parlay betting to wagers placed on different games, but not FanDuel.
  • BetMGM often offers the most markets for betting.
  • Caesars offers the best in-app odds boosts and other promos.

“The other thing about signing up for various sites is players will find they simply prefer some over others based on their player experience with the app and its interface and performance. All are not created equal,” Barnsdale said.

Other pro betting tips

Nothing can improve your experience more than winning your bet. As Pizzola explains, “A lot of people will say, ‘Sports betting is for fun, it’s entertaining,’ but I don’t know anyone who is entertained by constantly losing their money over and over and over. The fun part of sports betting is actually winning your bets and celebrating that with your friends. It’s not losing outright. That just creates a pretty abysmal experience.”

To help achieve a positive outcome, Pizzola and Redlick have a few other tips for novice bettors:

  1. Bet on sports you know and like. “Find sports you’re passionate about or you think you have a feel for or you like because, if you’re going to learn more about it or research it more, it’s a lot more fun if you like the sports,” Redlick said.
  2. Bet small amounts at first and do not bet too often. Redlick’s one exception is: “If you get a bonus. If you have $100 in an account, but your first bet is basically a refund bet, then you’ve got to bet the whole thing.”
  3. Avoid parlay betting in the beginning. Pizzola said it’s going to be “very, very difficult” for amateur or recreational bettors “to ever profit off parlays without getting extremely lucky… I would highly recommend avoiding them out of the get-go until you’re a more pronounced bettor and you understand some more basic concepts over time, and you do a little bit more learning.”

OH only. 21+.Gambling Problem? Call or text 1-800-GAMBLER

Photo by Shutterstock
Dave Briggs Avatar
Written by
Dave Briggs

Dave Briggs is a managing editor and writer for Catena Media. His expertise is covering the gambling industry in North America with an emphasis on the casino, sports betting and horse racing industries.

View all posts by Dave Briggs