Bookmaker Reviews & Ratings – best Sportsbooks 2021

In this article, we compare and thoroughly test all the current big names among bookmakers. As there are so many sports betting sites out there and not every one of them is reputable and safe, we have looked to identify the best online sportsbooks for you, and present them here in a detailed and honest comparison.

Ultimately, of course, it is up to you which online bookmaker you place your sports bets with. We do however think, that there are some important points that are worth considering.

The questions we focused on were: How reputable is each of these bookies? How safe is your money with these companies – if you place your money with a bookmaker that has illegal dealings in the market, you may encounter difficulties when it comes to processing payments.

For this reason, of course we have taken care to choose only respectable and legally operating betting providers for our review. We have taken an in-depth look at each provider’s range of betting on offer, the usability of their mobile websites, as well as their registration and deposit/withdrawal processes. The results of our tests can be found in our top bookmakers list below.

Sportsbook Reviews | Top Bookmakers | updated Nov 2021

The following summary shows the ranking of the candidates in our Sportsbook Reviews, as well as the rating of each individual sports betting provider. To view all the information for each bookie and see the detailed test results, click on the “Read Review” button.

#1 / Best Bookmaker

Bet365
Bet365

The most established name in world wide sports betting offers a huge range of betting options for new and experienced bettors. Bet365 is well known for great odds on sporting events from around the globe.

Bet365 Review Sign up with Bet365 and get 100 €/$/£ Bonus

#2 Bookmaker

Interwetten
Interwetten

Interwetten is one of the early pioneers in online sports betting since it went online in 1997. The bookmaker comes with top odds for bets on the most popular teams from the big European Football Leagues. The betting platform has been developed in-house and sets new standards in terms of usability!

Interwetten Review Sign up with Interwetten and get 100 €/$/£ Bonus

#3 Bookmaker

Unibet
Unibet

Founded in 1997, Unibet is one of the oldest bookmakers in the online betting business. A simple platform with a wide range of bets on offer and continuous innovation: these are the goals the company is committed to!

Unibet Review Sign up with Unibet and get 50 €/$/£ Bonus

#4 Bookmaker

Betvictor
Betvictor

Launched in the year 2000, the BetVictor Online Sportsbook has a considerable presence in the world of betting, and the bookmaker’s name has become synonymous with attractive odds and winnings on football bets.

Betvictor Review Sign up with Betvictor and get 100 €/$/£ Bonus

#5 Bookmaker

Betsson
Betsson

A reliable online betting platform provided by dedicated in-house built software, and a consistently attractive offer of popular and interesting sports make Betsson a favourite sports betting provider for many players worldwide.

Betsson Review Sign up with Betsson and get 10 €/$/£ Free Bet

#6 Bookmaker

Ladbrokes
Ladbrokes

Ladbrokes is one of the most respected British bookmakers which has built up a great online presence in recent years. With a wide range of bets, live sports streaming and in-play betting, as well as some great online promotions Ladbrokes could be a good choice for advanced bettors as well as recreational players.

Ladbrokes Review Sign up with Ladbrokes and get €/$/£20 Free Bet

Should i have betting accounts with more than one bookmaker?

If you decide to bet professionally, an analysis of the various odds is also essential to always get the best odds, it also makes sense to have accounts with several providers in so you will be able to vary and always get the best prices. In our bookmaker reviews and ratings, we summarize the most striking advantages and disadvantages of the best online sportsbooks.


Sportsbook Reviews – this is how we tested and rated

All the sports betting companies featured here were thoroughly examined by our test editorial team. For this purpose, we opened one or more betting accounts with these bookies and over time tested all their offers in practice using our own money.

At the end of the test, our experiences gained in this way were documented in detailed reviews. To achieve the most objective level of testing for our Online Bookmakers Review we tested each company using a uniform set of consistent rules.

In order to achieve this, 10 test categories were defined, against each of which all of the sportsbooks were tested independently of each other. The scores achieved in the 10 categories were then used to calculate the overall rating for each bookmaker thereby determining the final ranking of the best sports betting providers.


The following categories were used in our Overlyzer Bookmaker test:


Important Key Data and Sportsbook Information

For each sportsbook review, we start off by gathering all the available data and facts about each bookie. Mostly this is basic objective information, such as the founding year, history of the betting operation, number of employees and customers, betting turnover and earnings – all the hard facts are collected in this category to provide a basis for our testers.

Sponsorship activities, promotions and advertising campaigns in different parts of the world are also taken into account and rated by our test editorial team.


Unibet Football Sponsorship
Illustrated above: Betting provider Unibet is a featured sponsor of Swedish First League Football -– imago images – Copyright: MICHAELxERICHSEN BB210418MI062

At the same time, we also look at various sports betting groups and discussion boards, analyse test reports from other comparison sites and search the net for customer reviews, both positive and negative.

In this way, we work to gain a complete picture of the reputation and respectability of each bookie. These “soft facts” also contribute to the score received by our bookies in this test category.


Betting Site, Mobile Site and Sports Betting App

After gathering and evaluating all the relevant facts and data and applying our rating accordingly, we then turn to look at the betting software deployed by each sports betting operator. To obtain representative results in this category we test usability on each of the most common platforms: PC/Mac, Tablets and a variety of popular mobile devices.

With so many bets being placed on the go these days and a large proportion of visitors to sportsbooks coming from mobile devices, we pay particular attention to the mobile apps offered by our top bookmakers when rating them in this test category. These are tested and closely examined in a step-by-step process.


Betway Bet Builder
Screenshot: with the Bet Builder from Betway, desired bets can be selected, combined and placed quickly and without any fuss.

Usability and performance are at the top of our test editors’ list. Here, three questions help decide the rating for this category:

  • how simple and intuitive is it to use the betting platform?
  • how quickly can you find your way around the betting site without any additional help?
  • how long does it take to place the desired bet?

The easier and faster the software can be used, the higher the score awarded in this particular area.


Sportsbook | Betting Markets offered

When rating the sports betting offered by our test candidates, our editors use two very important parameters to arrive at their score: the width and the depth of the range of available betting.

The quality of the betting range is judged by looking at all the sports and events offered. A broad betting offer is characterised by its numerous different types of sport as well as the large number of sporting events.

The best bookmakers in our reviews offer more than 50 types of sport in their betting programmes, from American Football to Volleyball and Winter Sports.

Football is undoubtedly the most popular sport to bet on. To see how wide the betting range is, it’s worth looking at the number of different countries and leagues you can bet on in football. The best sportsbooks offer hundreds of options, from Algeria to Zanzibar, wherever football is played.

For the biggest footballing nations, the betting programme not only features just the top-level leagues but often includes amateur competitions as well!

UK Football Betting Bet365
Extract from the football betting offered by Bet365: the British bookmaker’s astounding range features betting in 25 different UK football leagues.

In addition to examining the width of the range of bets on offer our testers also place great importance on the depth of that range. This is defined here as the number of different betting markets offered for individual events in the betting programme. Returning to the subject of football we ask this question: how many different possibilities for betting are available for each match?

The depth of the betting offered is also added to by the creativity displayed by each online bookmaker – there are virtually no limits here, with often up to 200 different bets listed for important matches, as in the below example from the Interwetten betting programme.

In addition to the standard bet types such as the handicap bet in its many variations, the double chance, various types of goal bets on teams or individual players, over/under bet options, half-time/full-time bets and simple correct score bets, many betting providers also offer some interesting special bets, such as the “draw no bet” or various Asian handicap bets in the betting offer of the football world.


Live Betting and Live Streams Offered by the Online Sportsbook

Around 80% of all bets placed online are not made prior to the start of an event but are placed as Live Bets or In-Play betting. Therefore, a successful live betting experience is also very important here in this review.

A well-done Live Betting platform is on the one hand defined by its range and depth, similar to the previous category. Basically, the more the better!

On the other hand, the functionality and performance of the underlying software play a tremendous role in In-Play betting – the latest odds need to be continuously kept up-to-date.  After all, due to the nature of constant odds adjustments and different match events, seconds can often decide whether a live bet could be placed successfully or not.


Bookmaker 888 live betting
Screenshot showing the Live Betting offered by 888 – the bookie has a convincing choice of betting markets on offer even for youth and amateur competitions.

The best betting providers feature a high-performance Live Betting platform that makes the process of choosing and placing desired bets quick and easy.

Extra points in the scoring for this test category are awarded for offering an excellent wide selection of live streaming sporting events, so that players can see the events they are betting on even if they are not covered on TV or other channels.


Online Bookmakers with the highest Odds in our Reviews

The most objective way to evaluate the attractiveness of a bookmaker’s betting odds is to look at the so-called payout key or payout ratio.

This significant number indicates, how much is paid out by each betting provider on a long-term average on winning bets, and what percentage of the bets staked is retained.

When we calculate and determine a payout rate of, for example, 95% for a sportsbook, this online Sportsbook pays on average 95% of all received bet stakes back to the customer and retains a gross margin of 5% of bet stakes.

Out of this small margin the betting company pays their own costs for staff, technology, development, rents, taxes etc – at best a very small margin, percentage-wise will be left as profit for the provider at the end of the year in this case.


Average Payout Rates offered by Test winner Bet365 split by sport type

TennisFootballBasketballIce Hockey
93%95%96%95%
*The average payout rate was calculated using the main bet as its basis (depending on the sport either a 1×2-bet or two-way win bet) as well as randomly selected bets from the most prominent competitions and leagues.

The average payout rate of the best betting providers falls mostly into a range between 90 to 96%. Attractive betting events such as Champions League matches or World and European Championships often reach the highest levels of payout rates because of the strong competition between top bookmakers.

With smaller-scale betting events, the payout rate is often lower, at around just 90% or even less. Examples here would be matches from the second division football league in Finland or some of the hereabouts little-known Asian football leagues.


Sportsbook Registration Process and Special Offers

In order to place bets, online registration with a sports betting provider is necessary, which means opening a betting account. Registration is, for legal reasons, a necessary evil, and therefore our testing process here in the first place is mostly about how quick and easy the registration process is.

In many countries, it is also a necessary requirement to provide documents such as a passport or personal ID in the form of a scan when opening a betting account with a bookmaker. This is not an over-exercise of caution on part of the betting operator but is in most cases determined by the requirements of the legal authorities.

When it comes to betting bonuses, our test editors distinguish between two different groups of offers:


Bonus for New Customers

New customers are very important for the growth strategies of betting operators – that is why just about every bookie offers new customers a welcome bonus.

The new customer bonus is usually tied to the first deposit on a newly opened betting account, only in rare cases are free bets offered without any prior deposit.

As the bonus for new customers can often be linked to somewhat confusing conditions, it is often not easy to judge the attractiveness of bonus offers at first glance. For this reason, our test editorial team took a detailed look at the relevant terms and conditions of each bonus and took those into consideration when forming their bookmaker rating.

Unibet Promotion
Screenshot: Bonus credit can also be earned by recommending a friend, as shown here at Unibet sportsbook

Promotions and Offers for Existing Customers

In addition to the acquisition of new customers, it is very important for betting operators to keep existing punters happy and not lose them to a competitor. For this purpose, most betting providers offer regular promotions and special offers for existing customers as part of their programme.

Our testers have monitored over the long-term which special offers can be counted on by existing customers and how handsomely these promotions are designed.


Betting Account Functionality

Even when the betting account serves the same purpose at each sportsbook, the functionality of actions and activities in the account are still marked by different characteristics at each betting provider.

Our testers have therefore thoroughly examined which functions are available in the different betting accounts and how easy and efficient it is to access each service.

The most important functionalities in a betting account naturally include deposits and withdrawals, but useful tools related to the bets made in the archive can also contribute to a better rating here.

As we frequently receive messages from our readers with questions about individual betting sites, we have compiled the best and most interesting of these into an FAQ section published as part of each bookmaker’s test report.


Betting Account Deposits and Withdrawals

Deposits and withdrawals to and from a betting account are basically part of the betting account functions discussed in the previous section. However, since all payment transactions are a basic requirement and of enormous importance for the evaluation of a bookie, we have given this sensitive topic its own test section.

At the current time, there are numerous options for making online payments. Ranging from a regular bank transfer and e-wallet solutions like Paypal to crypto-currency payments – in this regard, each betting customer has their own preferences. For this reason, it is highly important for a bookmaker to offer as many popular payment methods as possible for deposits and withdrawals.


Example: The variety of payment methods available for deposits and withdrawals for an account with Betting company Interwetten

Credit CardsDebit CardsTransferse-walletsOthers
VISAV PayBank TransferSkrillPaysafecard
MastercardMaestroEPSSkrill 1-TapVoucher
Diners Club KlarnaNeteller 
   EcoPayz 
Table: All the options for making deposits at Interwetten at a glance. An overview of any fees linked to each payment method can be found in the detailed Interwetten review.

The speed with which payments are completed is also something particularly noted by our team of testers – as most likely one will want to start betting as soon as the deposit to the betting account has been made. One should also not have to wait longer than necessary for the settlement of winnings.

Equally important in this test category are any fees incurred when completing transactions with a bookmaker. Ideally, deposits and withdrawals should be free – however, in the case of most providers, for at least certain payment methods fees of varying amounts are charged. As this information is mostly shown in very small print in the betting terms & conditions, we have summarised, compared and rated all the relevant information.

Video: Depositing money into a betting account with Bet365 using skrill – our colleagues at Sportwettentest.net explain in detail what needs to be considered here.

Video: Depositing money into a betting account with Bet365 with a Paysafecard – ‘All Stuff’ explain in detail what needs to be considered here.


Customer Service and Help-Functions

In an ideal case the customer services division of the betting provider will never be needed, as all the functions of the betting site and the betting account are self-explanatory and as easy to use as possible, and also all actions involved in an uncomplicated payment process run smoothly.

However, it is usually the case that questions arise again and again when dealing with a betting provider that are not or not sufficiently dealt with in the respective help sections on the betting sites.

These questions then become the responsibility of the small or large division for customer services, that is Help and Customer Support. We have looked at the ways the Service teams of the various bookies can be reached, how long it takes to get questions answered or problems solved, and altogether, how helpful the customer service comes across to fans of sports betting.

A criterium for the availability of customer services is also whether they can be reached 24 hours a day.  As the betting programme is so arranged that, in principle, bets are possible 24 hours a day, questions and problems can occur at any time and that may be outside the usual office times or require urgent assistance.


Further Information for Each Betting Company

In this last category, we include all the information and data, that don’t quite fit into the other nine areas tested in our sportsbook reviews. For this purpose, we have also done a little research behind the scenes in order to offer our visitors added value with the test reports in comparison to other betting provider comparison sites.

As we are very familiar with the area of betting, we can also offer information that is not published on other portals in this form. Additionally, we can also use this information in forming our rating of the respective providers.

The concluding section is therefore something of an Insider-area in the Bookmaker Reviews by Overlyzer.com

Essential information from all areas in the bookmaker business can be found here, and the relevant test reports are continuously updated and expanded by our editors.

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