Big Sportsbooks Are Afraid of the Local Bookie

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:

The big sportsbooks have always been fearful of the local bookie. There are numerous reasons that we’ll discuss in this article, but the big reason is because it simply cuts into their profits.

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For every bettor that prefers betting with a local bookie, that’s less money in the pockets of the big bookies. Local bookies also have several advantages over mainstreet bookmakers.

More and more countries are legalizing sports betting, including throughout the USA. However, the licensed bookies aren’t going to easily be able to take market share from local bookies.

Reasons Sports Bettors Use Local Bookies

  • Service: Some bettors like to know their bookie. Others have had poor experiences with the big bookmakers and trust a local bookie more, as they know they’ll be paid on time.
  • Taxes: Depending upon where you live, taxes on sports betting can be high. Local bookies deal with cash, so there’s no paper trail and therefore less chance of being audited.
  • Faster Payouts: Some of the big bookmakers take a long time to payout players. The time to process a payout varies by region and method, but can be multiple weeks in some cases.
  • Betting on Credit: While offering credit asks risk to your business, it’s necessary as a local bookie. You can’t expect your players to bring you cash every time they want to bet.  
  • Anonymity:   Many   people value their privacy even if they have nothing to hide. All of the big sportsbooks are required to follow KYC regulations.

There’s no doubt local bookies are here to stay. Local bookies can provide a lot of benefits, which we’ve discussed above. Now that you know what bettors look for, you can market to them.

You also need to make sure you don’t have any policies in place that would take the benefits away. For example, as a local bookie you need to offer credit. Just make sure you trust your players and have a collection schedule. If there’s an issue, offer a payment plan and work with your players.


If you plan on marketing online and having strangers bet with your sportsbook, you need to either offer a small amount of credit and have a weekly collection policy to limit your risk. There will be players that never pay up when dealing with strangers, but that’s a risk you need to accept.

Lots of sports bettors dislike depositing to big sportsbooks whenever they want to bet and then having to wait for a payout while submitting KYC documents. As a local bookie you don’t need to worry about these regulations and you’ll be able to build your player base quicker.

The next best thing you can do to compete with the big sportsbooks is to build a rapport with your players and keep them satisfied with your service. Be generous too. The big bookies all offers a lot of promotions. If you offer nothing, it’s unlikely you’re going to retain most players.

As a local bookie, you have very little overhead. If you have bettors losing good money, make sure you keep them betting with you by offering them free bets or a cash bonus on a new deposit.

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