What are Betting Odds and how are they Calculated?


Sports betting is not only an entertaining pastime but also a way to make profits if you have some knowledge on how to make your bets pay. Betting odds are some of the main features that you should learn before you start placing your bets. They are important since they help you calculate:

  • The probability of your prediction occurring
  • The projected amount of winnings you can expect from your bet
  • The likelihood of striking a winning depending on how much stake you place

To bet like a professional, it is wise to factor in the betting odds whenever you need to stake your cash on any game. Our helpful guide helps you understand why the odds and probabilities are important and how you can calculate them to arrive at your expected earnings. Read on to find out what betting odds are and how they affect your winnings. You can apply your skills to EkaBet Kenya.


Probability is the likelihood of an outcome happening. The larger the number, the higher your chances of winning. For instance, in a football match, there are various outcomes and bets that you can place on a specific expected outcome. For example, these outcomes could be the likelihood of both teams finishing the match at a draw, getting a particular number of goals, or a particular player scoring the first goal among other bets.

To bet professionally, it is wise to understand the probability of any of these scenarios happening and calculating how much you should gain if your prediction comes true. Probability can be presented as a fraction or in decimal form. Betting odds help you understand what your odds are regarding the bets you intend to place on a particular outcome.

How to Calculate Probability

As a beginner, betting odds might seem overwhelming if you cannot understand how to arrive at these figures. However, with our guide, you will find it easy to understand betting odds and their importance in sports betting. You can use the fractional odds to calculate the probability of a predicted outcome. For example:

  • 1/1 fraction refers to a 50/50 chance of that outcome happening. For example, while betting on an odd/even number of odds, the 1/1 means that you have an equal chance of winning when you place any of the 2 different bets.
  • Similarly, 8/1 means that you have a 1/(8+1) or 1/9 which in decimal form is a 1/9% or 11% chance of the event happening. Additionally, 4/1 odds mean its 1 out of (1+4) or 1/5 chance out of 100 which translates to a 20% chance of the event happening.

How to calculate your winnings

You can use the betting odds figures to calculate how much you win on particular bets on your game. Using our previous example, you can easily tell how much you stand to win in each scenario. For example, for every value of the later digit that you bet you get the preceding figure. For instance, for every 1/1 of every $1, you win $1.

  • For 4/1 of every $1, you win $4
  • Similarly, for every 1/5 of every $5 you bet, you win $1

Betting odds in Decimals and your Winnings

Most bookmakers, however, display betting odds in form of decimals. This is easier to calculate and to understand for most bettors. Additionally, betting odds in decimals can display even the most marginal differences as opposed to fractions. Decimals are also the most popular in betting exchanges such as Betfair, with betting exchanges attracting a large number of bettors due to the big payouts players stand to gain.

To know how much you win, you calculate your stake X the odds. The net win is equal to (your stake X decimal odds less the stake you placed). For example:

  • 5.0 can translate to $40 winnings since (5.0x$10 stake less stake of $10). However, you should not worry much about the calculations since you can use the bet calculator to find out the amount you can win for every the stake of your place.
  • Similarly, 8.0 can translate to $70 since (8.0X$10 stake less $10 stake).