Bookmakers and oddsmakers are in the gambling business as a business and they need to make money. The -110 figure that they establish for many bets is the amount that a bettor needs to bet in order for them to win $100. This extra $10 is called the juice that the bookmaker needs in order to remain in business.
As Far As The Bettor Is Concerned
Just like with anything, consumers need to find the best prices they possibly can before they spend their money. The same thing goes for laying down a bet. Different oddsmakers and bookmakers will set reduced juice for bettors in order to attract new bettors or increase the action on a particular game. These reduced lines are commonly known as “reduced juice” or “nickel lines.”
Bettors need to shop around for the best they can find so that they need to put up the least amount of money possible to place their bets. The bettor needs to put themselves in a position to make the most they can off the least amount of money possible.
The ultimate objective for any bettor is to minimize their losses and maximize their wins, obviously right? There are going to be times when a bettor will spend a little more on a bet because they are confident in the team. This bet could be upwards of -120 or even -130. If a bettor is going to do this, they need to make sure that they are extremely confident in the bet that they are making.
As Far As The Sportsbook Is Concerned
No business is going to last long if they are not making money. This is why bettors have to spend $110 to win $100. The sportsbook needs to be able to make money for being available to bettors to broker the bets. This seems like a small commission, but sportsbooks make a majority of their money on losses.
Between a cashed out winning bet and a losing bet, the bookmakers will come out up $10. This is not a lot of money, which is why a bookmaker banks on the fact that there are going to be a large number of bettors who are going to lose. Also, what most bettors don’t take into account is the number of bets that a bookmaker takes throughout the scope of a single game. The more bets they take, the more money they make.
For an even more detailed discussion on betting vig and how to beat it, check out this article.