How to Bet at an Online Sportsbook

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When betting on sports online, bettors have a wide array of choices. Almost every operator offers some type of bonus or free bet promotion to lure new players in. These can come in the form of match bonuses, bonus bet credits and other types of welcome bonuses. These promotions are vital to the success of US-facing sportsbooks, as they can help to attract a large audience and increase revenue. They also allow operators to compete with land-based sportsbooks, which typically use comps and free cash offers to attract bettors.

Some online sportsbooks offer risk-free bets, which are bets that will return money if they lose. These are a good way to get a feel for the site and see if it is a place you want to bet long-term. However, they do come with some restrictions. For example, some sportsbooks only allow you to win back a small percentage of your wager, such as 15%. Others require you to place a certain number of bets before you can withdraw the free money. These restrictions are designed to keep you betting at the sportsbook and not just laying down money on heavy favorites.

Most sportsbooks will offer some type of deposit bonus to new players, but it is important to read the terms and conditions carefully before you claim any. These bonuses are usually capped at a certain amount and have rollover requirements, which are designed to make sure that the bettors actually spend the money they won. Rollover requirements are also intended to prevent bettors from just laying down money on big favorites and winning lots of bonus funds.

In addition to offering a deposit bonus, some sportsbooks will also give out free bets after a player makes their first wager. These are not as common as deposit matches, but they can be helpful for bettors looking to try out a sportsbook. These free bets are often only available for a limited time and can be used on specific events.

Another way that online sportsbooks reward new members is by adding money to their initial deposits. These are called welcome bonuses and can vary between 50%, 75%, or even 100%. These can only be utilized once, and they are often accompanied by high rollover requirements. However, these bonuses can be a great way to increase your bankroll and start betting for real money.

The most common welcome bonuses are offered by online sportsbooks that offer bonus bets on NFL games. These bets must have minimum odds of -200 to qualify, and they expire after a short period of time. Depending on the sportsbook, the free bets may be refunded as cash or bonus bet credits. FanDuel, for instance, offers a no-sweat bet, which allows players to receive up to $1,000 in bonus bet credits if they lose their first bet. They must be used within a certain amount of time and on NFL games that take place in the United States.