When interpreting sports betting lines, it is extremely important to understand how bet percentage and money percentage affect both line movement and gauging why the line moved.
Many bettors can be confused on line movement because money amounts can interrupt the public’s perception of which side everyone is hammering. This applies to all sports, from MLB betting to NFL betting and beyond.
What Is Bet Percentage?
Bet percentage is the percentage of bets the public is betting on a specific side. For example, if the Warriors and Blazers are playing, 70% of the public is betting on the Warriors while 30% of the public is betting on the Blazers. This is simple stuff, but can be very important when dissecting lines.
What Is Money Percentage?
Money percentage is the percentage of dollar amounts on a specific side of a bet. Sure, 70% of the public can be betting on the Warriors, but if bettors are putting more money on that 30% of bets on the Blazers, it can affect the line. That’s how it differs from Bet Percentage.
Money Percentage Impacts Betting Lines
Let’s dig deeper into that 70% to 30% NBA betting example. So, 70% of public is betting on the Warriors. This is the bet ticket amount on each side. The line is Warriors -7.5. However, you noticed that the line moved to -7, but everyone is betting on the Warriors. You may ask, why would the line move down if everyone is on the Warriors?
This is where money comes in. This could be due to the sharps (pros) pounding the Blazers and moving the line. Sportsbooks adjusts their lines based off the money amount, not the bet percentage amount.
So, if there’s 100 bets and 70 of those bets are on the Warriors totaling $5,000, but 30 of those bets are on the Blazers totaling $10,000 with larger bets, the line will move toward the team receiving much more money. This is called reverse line movement.
Normally a high bet percentage on one team will move the line higher/steeper. However, money and sharps offer a more influential variable. Most websites that show lines will only show the bet percentage on each sides, though some show the money percentage on each side as well.
Betting Against Consensus Doesn’t Make You a ‘Sharp’
If you are one to read lines or want to learn how to read lines and the movement science behind it, find a website that offers both percentages. It is absolutely necessary when dissecting a day’s card.
Many bettors who like to bet against the public think they are “sharp,” but there are sharp bettors and then there are fake sharp bettors. The fake sharp bettors just blindly fade (go against) the public with no other factors involved.
The thing is, average bettors may actually be betting against the sharps without even knowing it because they had no idea about the money amounts bet on that game.
There is a whole other world of betting science out there that amateur sports bettors are completely unaware of. The education system of sports betting has not peaked by any means, but I believe in the future the real experts and betting brains will finally step up and teach their skills.
Using Bet & Money Percentage to Your Advantage
Sports betting is a long-term process, and sticking to systems that have profitable expected value of 54%+ is the way to go. When I say expected value, I mean long-term approach with data backing it up.
One strategy to profit from when it comes to viewing bet percentage and money percentage is going with the reverse line movement on teams receiving heavy money. If 70% of the public is betting on one NHL team, yet 80% of the money is on the other team, that’s a golden ticket for long-term success.
This means that you are getting two valuable pieces of information here. You get to go against the average joe bettors who are all stacked up on one side thinking it is an easy winner, while also being on the same side as the professionals who are betting HARD on that team or total.
Remember that just blindly fading the public is not a good strategy. However, the expected value on reverse line movement with 70% money on the side opposite of the public’s bet percentage will make you a fortune long-term.
Stick with it and be patient.