Online Sports Betting Sites

Chavdar Vasilev
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Chavdar Vasilev
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Updated: May 13th 2024
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Since the 2018 United States Supreme Court decision to legalize sports betting, 29 states and Washington D.C. have legalized online betting. The latest state to launch online sports betting was Vermont on Jan. 11, 2024, and North Carolina plans to follow soon.

As the popularity of betting grows, so does the number of betting sites. Finding the right one can be challenging, but we’re here to help.

We’ve created this comprehensive guide for everything you need to know about online sports betting, including the best sportsbooks and promos, how to sign up, and how to place bets.

What Is an Online Sportsbook?

An online sportsbook is a website that allows you to place bets on various sports and events for a chance to win real money. Before you can place a wager, you must establish an account, which includes verifying your identity and that you’re within a legal age (21 years old in most states).

Legal online sportsbooks are regulated and licensed by state regulators to ensure all bettors are protected, and there are no fraudulent activities. The biggest advantage of online sportsbooks is their convenience. You can place bets on your computer or mobile device anywhere sports betting is legal.

My Online Sportsbook Experience

To create this guide, I’ve gone through the experience of a new player. My journey began with choosing a sportsbook from the Oddsseeker list of the best online sportsbooks. To compare sites, I signed up with several sportsbooks.

Before I could start betting, I had to create an account. To do so, I clicked the “Get Bonus” button and was taken to the registration page. There, I filled in the required information, including phone number, address, and social security number. Some sites require a promo code, so make sure you copy the Oddseeker exclusive promo code.

After creating my account, I made a deposit to unlock the bonus offer, and shortly after, I received my bonus funds. Then, I placed a few bets from the suggested games on the home screen. My bet slip summary got updated every time I placed a bet. That allowed me to keep track of my wagers.

Once my bets were placed, I waited for my results. Each site showed me if I won, and winnings were immediately deposited into my account.

Overall, from signing up to placing a bet, I spent less than 10 minutes on each site I signed up for. The registration process was straightforward at every site I tried. Placing bets is also effortless, and my results, including winnings and losses, were displayed.

Best Online Sports Betting Sites

Based on research, we’ve selected the best online sports betting sites. Factors in our choice included bonus offers, reputation, choice of sports, odds, and user experience. See below for our top picks.

DraftKings

  • Available in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

DraftKings started as a Daily Fantasy Sports website in 2012 and has become one of the most well-known sports betting sites. DraftKings was the first sportsbook to launch outside Nevada in 2018.

The sportsbook offers users an easy-to-navigate site with many betting options and promotions. In addition, the site has the unique Stats Hub, which offers educational information on teams and players to help users make better picks.

FanDuel

  • Available in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Like DraftKings, FanDuel started with Daily Fantasy Sports in 2009. The company was bought by European gaming giant Flutter Entertainment in 2018 and launched its sportsbook in 2020. Since then, FanDuel has become the leader in sports betting in terms of market share.

In addition to a generous welcome bonus, the betting site offers one of the best platforms, and its app is among the highest-rated on both Google Play and Apple Store.

Caesars

  • Available in Arizona, Colorado, DC, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Caesars is among the most famous names in gambling from it’s , and its sportsbook lives up to its name. The site has extensive sports and betting options, including boosts.

In addition, it comes with excellent customer support and is connected to both the Caesars Palace Online Casino and Caesars Rewards, making it one of the best loyalty programs in gambling.

BetMGM

  • Available in Arizona, Colorado, DC, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

BetMGM is co-owned by MGM Resorts International and British-based Entain, combining the two companies' experiences with US and international online gambling and sports betting.

The site offers bettors one of the best user experiences and is easy to navigate. Bettors will find everything they need at the top of their home screen. The site also has links to its online casino and poker (where available) for those who want to try something beyond sports betting.

ESPN BET

  • Available in Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

ESPN BET is one of the newest sportsbooks, having launched in Nov. 2023 after a deal between Penn Entertainment and sports media ESPN. While the site is new, the operator Penn has been around (operated Barstool Sportsbook before), and ESPN BET has an improved technology platform.

As a new site, ESPN BET offers many promotions to attract new bettors. It also provides the simple-to-understand Pick 6 parlay. With the Pick 6, bettors select the sports and leagues they want to create a parlay with, and the site will do the work for them.

BetRivers

  • Available in  Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.

BetRivers launched in 2019 and is part of Rush Street Interactive. It stands out with its weekly promotions tailored to the bettor and iRush Rewards, one of the best loyalty programs. In addition to competitive odds, the site allows bettors to live stream games, a feature not found at many sportsbooks.

Bet365

  • Available in Colorado, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Jersey, Ohio, and Virginia.

Bet365 was founded in 2000 and is among the most famous sportsbooks outside the US. The company entered the US in 2019 but has chosen to expand slower than some competitors.

The site stands out with the number of sports offered and its “Early Payout” promotion. The promo allows you to cash out your bet before the game is over if your team is up by a certain number of points.

For example, you bet the New England Patriots will win by 14. Your wager is paid out as soon as the team goes up by 14, even if the team loses.

How to Choose an Online Sports Betting Site

What’s important in a betting site could vary from person to person. However, before choosing a sportsbook, consider the common factors listed below.

Promo Offers 

Sportsbooks compete to attract new bettors by offering better welcome bonuses and sportsbook promos. But, before you select a bonus, always read the bonus terms, including deposit, minimum odds, and wagering requirements. A promotion might offer you a higher dollar amount, but the terms might be less favorable, so you get less.

Available States

Make sure the betting site is legal in the state you’re located in. Also, if you travel or cross state lines often, a site that is available in multiple states could be a decisive factor.

Selection of Sports

Every sportsbook offers major sports and leagues like the NFL, NBA, and MLB. However, if you follow lesser-known sports or are looking for a unique betting option, look for a betting site offering a wide range of options. Lesser-known sports often provide better odds.

Odds

When choosing a betting site, look at the available odds. Not every site will offer the same odds. That means you will take a lower payout on your bet at a site with less favorable odds. We suggest comparing a few similar games between sites and see how the sportsbooks’ odds compare.

Banking Options

Available deposit and withdrawal methods could be a decisive factor for many users. Before you sign up for a sportsbook, check the available options to see if they match your preferences. Some sites might have more options, including newer payment types (e.g., Venmo).

Also, not every sportsbook processes withdrawals at the same rate. Often, for the same banking method, you can get your money in one day at one site but longer at another.

Best Online Sportsbook for Beginners

While all top sportsbooks are user-friendly, BetMGM’s site stands out. It is clean and organized, with tabs for popular sports, easy parlays, favorites, and more. The Easy Parlay tool is handy for beginners as it helps them quickly build either a single-game or multi-game, multi-sport one.

The site also allows users to edit active bets. Options include adding, removing, swapping sections, or increasing stakes. Another well-designed feature is the smooth live streaming, which functions exceptionally well.

Best Online Sportsbook for Experts

Experienced players will appreciate Draftkings’ Stats Hub, which is located on the home page, next to live games. The Stats Hub allows bettors to dive deeper into an upcoming game or prop and gain more knowledge before they place their bet. Players can also see options like streaks and line moves for specific bets.

DraftKings Sportsbook also ranks high for its generous welcome bonus and ongoing promotions. Furthermore, the site has “missions” where the user is rewarded for completing a task.

What Is a Sweepstakes Sportsbook?

Sweepstakes sportsbooks are similar to sweepstakes casinos. These sites use a sweepstakes model, and no purchase is necessary. Sweepstakes sportsbooks are available in most US states to players over 18.

You don’t use cash to place your picks. Instead, there are two currencies. One is used for fun and has no value, while the other allows you to participate in sweepstakes for a chance to win cash prizes.

In terms of appearance, social sportsbooks operate like real-money sportsbooks. Once you log in, you will see available games and picks. You can choose the number of coins you want to use and pick one game or create parlays.

Fliff Social Sportsbook

Fliff was among the first social sportsbooks and has gained a lot of popularity. It’s only available as an app, which could be a negative for some, but it works exceptionally well. The app has a 4.8 rating out of 66k reviews on the App Store.

Fliff Social Sportsbook uses two currencies, Fliff Coins and Fliff Cash. Fliff Coins are used to play for fun, and you get some for signing up and every day you log in. Meanwhile, Fliff Cash allows you to place sports picks for a chance to win cash prizes. You get some when you sign up but cannot purchase additional Fliff Cash.

While there’s no purchase necessary to use Fliff Social Sportsbook, you can buy additional Fliff Coins offers, many of which also award you Free Fliff Cash.

Sportzino 

Sportzino is a newer social sportsbook owned by Blazesoft, the company behind Zula and Fortune Coins Sweepstakes Casinos. Like sweepstakes casinos, the sportsbook uses Gold Coins (play for fun) and Sweepstakes Coins (play for a chance to win cash prizes).  The latter cannot be purchased, but you can get more as part of Gold Coin offers.

Sportszino combines a social sportsbook and a sweepstakes casino. In addition to sports picks, you can play about 150 slots, including popular options like Gates of Olympus, Big Bass Bonanza, and Hot Triple 7s.  There are also sports-themed slots like Hockey League and Spin & Score.

Also, unlike Fliff, Sportzino is available on a desktop, so it is the better option if you’re not a fan of playing on your phone. Furthermore, each day you log in, you receive both Gold Coins and Sweepstakes Coins.

Online Sportsbook vs Sweepstakes Sportsbook

You use real money when you play at an online sportsbook like FanDuel. To bet on an online sportsbook, you must deposit first. If you win, then you can withdraw your winnings for cash.

Meanwhile, playing at sweepstakes sportsbooks like Fliff doesn’t require a purchase. You can bet for free using Gold Coins or equivalent. You can also use Sweepstakes Coins for a chance to win cash prizes.

Playing at a sweepstakes sportsbook makes sense if you’re in a state where real-money sportsbooks are illegal. Also, sweepstakes sportsbooks are an excellent choice if you just want to bet for fun and not worry about potential losses.

How to Sign Up for an Online Sports Betting Site

Signing up for an online sports betting site is easy and takes only a few minutes. To do so, follow the steps below:

  1. Choose a betting site and click “Claim Bonus” above to visit the registration page.

  2. Choose your state.

  3. Enter the required information, including name, email, and phone number.

  4. Create a username and password and agree to the terms.

  5. Enter additional information, like your social security number, to verify your identity.

  6. If required, enter the promo code for your bonus.

  7. Make your first deposit to claim your welcome offer.

  8. Collect your bonus and start betting.

What Payment Methods are Available on Online Sportsbooks? 

Online sportsbooks have a large selection of deposit and withdrawal methods. Some of the most popular ones include:

  • Online banking

  • Debit cards

  • PayPal, Venmo

  • Wire transfer

  • PayNearMe

  • Cash at a partner casino cage

  • Play+ or other prepaid cards

  • Gift cards

While we don’t recommend it, you can deposit using a credit card at most sportsbooks (it's not available in every state). However, you cannot withdraw using a credit card. Also, sometimes, you must use the same payment method for deposits and withdrawals (e.g., PayPal).

Deposits are usually processed immediately, and funds are credited to your account instantaneously. Depending on the sportsbook, some withdrawals are available immediately, while others take several business days.

Minimum deposit and withdrawal limits are usually between $5 and $20, depending on the sportsbook.

How to Place Bets at Online Sportsbooks?

Once you’ve signed up, it’s time to place a bet. To do that, follow these steps:

  • Log in to your account and ensure you have funds to bet.

  • Find a game and bet type you want to wager on.

  • Click on the odds of your choice.

  • The bet will move to your betting slip. Enter your bet amount.

  • Your potential winnings will appear. You can remove the bet if you change your mind. If you’re happy, select “Submit.”

What Sports Are Available at the Top Online Sportsbooks? 

The number of sports and leagues you can bet on is extensive. Some of the most popular options include:

  • NFL

  • NBA

  • MLB

  • NCAA basketball and football (college sports are not available everywhere)

  • NHL

  • MLS and international soccer

  • UFC

  • NASCAR, Formula 1, and other motorsports

  • Boxing

  • Golf

  • Cricket

  • Table Tennis

  • Lacrosse

  • Darts

  • Volleyball

  • Rugby

Some top sportsbooks also offer more unique sports like Badminton, Jai Alai, Aussie Rules, and e-sports. If you want to bet on college sports, be aware that many states don’t allow users to bet on in-state teams or have additional rules. Check with your sportsbook for more details.

Types of Bets at Online Sportsbooks 

Money Line

The money line is the most straightforward type of bet. In this type of bet, you bet on which team will win. For example, you bet on the Dallas Cowboys winning over the New York Giants. If the Cowboys win, your bet wins.

Spread

The spread or points spread is one of the most common bets. It serves as a handicap and evens the playing field between two teams. Sportsbooks will determine which team is the favorite and set the points spread by how many points it will win or the underdog will lose.

For example, in an NFL game, Kansas City Chiefs is set as the favorite with a point spread of -7, while the underdog Denver Broncos has a spread of +7. For your bet on the Chiefs to succeed, Kansas must win by more than seven points. Meanwhile, your Broncos bet will succeed if Denver wins or loses by less than seven points.

Total

A total is the most common over/under type of bet, where you bet on the total number of points in a game. The sportsbook will set a number (for example, the combined score of an NBA game is 200.5), and you must bet on whether the score will be lower or higher than that.

Player Props

Proposition or prop bets, are not tied to the final outcome of a game. Instead, they focus on the player’s performance. A common prop bet is the number of yards or touchdowns a Quarterback will throw in a game.

There are also game props, especially for the Superbowl, where you bet on things like which team will score first.

Futures

A futures bet is about a player or team's performance at the end of the season. The most common examples are the Super Bowl or NBA champion (for a team) or the season MVP or rookie of the year (for a player.)

Parlays

A parlay combines two or more bets. For example, you place a parley bet that includes four NFL games. For your bet to be successful, all “legs” (games in this example) of the parlay must win. If only three out of four win, then you lose your bet.

Parlays are popular because they allow you to place a small bet with high potential winnings. The bigger the parlay, the higher the potential winnings.

Same Game Parlays

As the name suggests, same-game parlays are parlay bets focused on the same game. This type of bet can combine other types of bets, such as spread, total, and player props, within the same game.

Same-game parlays are popular because they allow you to customize your bet on the results of one game.

What States Are Legalizing Online Sports Betting Next? 

North Carolina legalized online sports betting in June 2023 and will launch right before March Madness on March 11, 2024.

States where proponents hope to legalize sports betting include Georgia, Minnesota, and Missouri.

Chavdar Vasilev verified
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Chavdar Vasilev

After years of managing fast-casual restaurants, Chav turned his passion for sports and occasional slot wins into a career as an iGaming writer. Sharing his time between Europe and the US, he has been exposed to betting and gambling for years and has closely followed the growth in the US. Chav is a proponent of playing responsibly and playing only at legal online sites. When not writing, you will find him watching and betting on sports, especially soccer, or trying to land the next big bonus on a slot.

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