When not Matched Betting, there tend to be two main ways that you can view any normal, every day sports betting, or punting that you do. The first is that you can see it as purely for entertainment, fun or for purely grabbing an adrenaline rush moment. The second is that you become quite successful with it and start viewing it as a potential profit-making venture for you. With the first option, you tend to place more illogical or emotionally driven bets, while with the second option you tend to place bets that have been carefully selected using sports statistical data or some other type of careful calculations.
(Alternatively, instead of continuing to punt your bets you could also consider using the much smarter choice to make money - Matched Betting - see our What is Matched Betting guide for more information).
Accumulator Bets give punters all over the world the opportunity to use football statistics, or similar analytical data, to pick their bets, but have the added benefit, due to the potential payouts involved, of providing entertainment, or that adrenaline rush, that comes with the more typical sports betting option.
This combo-feature of Accumulator Bets means they have become extremely popular among regular punters and the bookmakers have helped spurred this on by providing special offers, such as Accumulator (Acca) Bet 'Insurance' if, for example, one leg of your Accumulator Bet lets you down.
Accumulator Bets Explained
An Accumulator Bet (or 'ACCA' or 'Multiples Bet') is a single bet that is on more than one selection to win. The most popular Accumulator Bets among punters tend to involve four or more selections.
With 'four-fold' Accumulator Bets, instead of four separate single bets on four separate separate games, all the selections are made to be in the same bet using a single stake in the betslip. If all four selections win, you usually make an extremely good return on your original stake. If even one selection loses though, the entire bet (and your stake) is then lost. All selections have to win, or you lose.
Using an example from the UK Premier League, a 'four-fold' Accumulator Bet would be a single bet on Manchester United, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Leeds all to win their respective games.
There are a lot of betting sites that offer their customers the opportunity to place Accumulator Bets - but some betting sites are better than others to use as they offer Accumulator Bet specials and promotions and/or make placing an Accumulator Bet really easy to do.
(Through Matched Betting we can take advantage of betting sites that provide promotional offers on Accumulator Bets and frequently make ourselves a profit no matter if our single Accumulator Bet wins or loses).
If you can lose when just one selection doesn't come in, you then may wonder why so many punters choose to place Accumulator Bets at all? The answer is simple; the returns can be massive if all selections do come in.
Calculating Accumulator Bets
Putting your selections in an Accumulator Bet gives you a higher value on your returns than putting your selections as separate, individual bets.
Calculating your returns and winnings on an Accumulator Bet is quite easy.
All you have to do is multiply together the odds from each of your selections (cumulatively), then multiply the result by your stake amount.
Using our Premier League example from earlier:
Manchester United to win = 2.35
Crystal Palace to win = 2.50
Southampton to win = 2.40
Leeds to win = 1.30
All we have to do is multiply 2.35 x 2.50, which is 5.875, then multiply that by 2.40, which is 14.1, then multiply that by 1.30 and we get our final Accumulator Bet odds of 18.33.
If we use a £5 stake on this Accumulator Bet, our returns would be £5 x 18.33, which is £91.65. Our total winnings would be our returns - our £5 stake amount, so £86.65.
If you prefer to use fractional odds, your first need to divide the fraction by itself then +1 to get the decimal odds.
(If we'd placed 4 x £5 single bets on each of these games our winnings if all four bets won would have been just £22.75 and we would have risked £20 altogether. With this Accumulator Bet we are only risking £5 to gain winnings of £86.65. This is why they are so appealing to regular punters).
Tips for Betting on Accumulators
If you want to start Accumulator Bets as a beginner, these tips will help you to succeed.
The number one tip is to avoid adding too many selections as this obviously massively decreases your chances of winning. The best would be about 4 to 5 selections and not 10 and 15 selections.
The second tip is to always look for bookmakers and betting sites that offers bonuses, free bets or insurances for betting on Accumulators.
'Acca Insurance' Offers are one of the most frequent offers available. These offers usually involve a refund of your bet stake if one selection on your Accumulator Bet loses.
The third tip is not to be lazy and research your Accumulator Bet selections before placing your bets.
The fourth tip is to avoid bet selections with short (or low) odds as this reduces the returns available to you quite substantially.
The final tip is to be smart, patient and sensible - never gamble more than you can afford to. Always gamble responsibly.
(Instead of gambling at all you could instead turn to Matched Betting. Follow our guides on our completely free trial and you'll quickly see exactly why you can't lose with Matched Betting).
Pros and Cons of Accumulator Bets
This is an attractive type of sport betting, and it can be very profitable, but it also has its disadvantages.
Here we will consider the pros and cons:
The possibility of winning large amounts with small bet stakes is the first pro here.
For those focused on fun and entertainment, Accumulator Bets deliver higher levels of adrenaline than single bets do.
The major disadvantage, as all punters will attest to, is the risk level involved in such a bet. It only takes one wrong selection to mess up all your other correct selections.
Accumulators in Matched Betting
In Matched Betting we frequently use any promotion on an Accumulator Bet to bag ourselves some quick profits - no matter if our Accumulator Bet loses or wins at the betting site.
A really simple example of Matched Betting on an Accumulator Bet with boosted odds can be seen via the Sky Bet Soccer Saturday Price Boost Special.
This is just one example of many ways Matched Betting can we used to make profits from Accumulators.
Want to know more about Matched Betting?
Why not ask our members yourself?
Our Facebook Group, which currently has over 30,000 members is a great place to get answers and ask for help, especially if you are completely new to Matched Betting.
Interested in Getting Started Matched Betting?
Alternatively, upgrade to our Platinum Membership here. You can easily make the cost of your membership back within an hour or so once you get the hang of things. Talk about value for money!