You may have heard a lot of buzz about Etoro lately, a social trading website which was designed to make trading more accessible with the option to copy the trades of other traders. It's been a major success with more than 6 million users now registered on the site.
So how about the idea of being able to automatically copy someone else's bets? Introducing CopyBet, a social betting platform that allows you to share your bets or copy other user's bets with complete automation.
How does CopyBet work?
Signing up to CopyBet is free and the first step after making an account is to follow the instructions to link it with your Betfair Exchange account. You do need to have a Betfair account in order to use CopyBet as it doesn't currently work with any other exchange or bookmaker.
You also need to have money to bet with deposited into your Betfair account as there is no practice mode and all bets are placed with real cash.
We have been testing the platform using a PC but it is also available on iOS and Android devices.
Once your Betfair account has been linked, the next step is to select whose bets you want to copy and the easiest way to do this is to go to the "Ratings" screen.
Here you can sort through the list however you like, whether it be by the amount of profit they've made or how many days they've been active. You can also choose more specific filters such as a minimum amount of bets placed or profit percentage and whether you want to search by day, week or overall.
Clicking on one of the tipsters takes you to a screen that has some more detailed stats and graphs. Below is one of the users that we chose to copy whilst testing the service out, who as you can see has been active for more than a year and has made a profit of $6,636.54.
It's worth noting that this user is rated as a high risk bettor, which may not suit everyone. This is something that can be filtered on the Ratings screen.
Although the currency is shown in dollars here, it is converted to what your Betfair account uses for your copied bets.
Some users can be copied free of charge and some charge a subscription fee each week. They set their own commission rate and receive 70% of it with the other 30% going to CopyBet.
To copy a user with a subscription requires you to deposit funds into the CopyBet wallet and it is converted into their own currency called "Credo". 1 Credo is equal to 1 USD and many tipsters that have subscription fees seem to be charging 5 Credos per week.
As you can see on the tipsters list above, there are quite a few users available to follow for free.
Does CopyBet make money?
Ultimately you are relying on a user that you are copying to have a profitable betting strategy but it is easy to see who has made a long-term profit judging by how long they have been active and how many bets they have placed.
We would suggest copying several users rather than putting all of your eggs into one basket. This will make it easier to bear if one has a bad run as another may be doing well enough to counteract it.
Whilst testing the service we just picked a couple of users to copy and we made a profit of £159.73 in less than 24 hours from a total of 696 bets.
This may seem like an extremely high volume of bets but on closer inspection we saw that the user was actually trading football matches in-play and appeared to be scalping some markets, which would explain the high number of backs and lays.
It's not initially clear what type of strategy the tipster uses on their profile, so this is something to be aware of.
One issue that we came across with CopyBet that we see as a real negative is the staking aspect.
#1 - We couldn't find a way to allocate a betting bank specifically for CopyBet, so it will use your entire Betfair balance. There's also no way to allocate a bank to each user you're copying.
#2 - When you copy a user you can choose a copying ratio to use, ranging from 0.1x to 1x. There isn't any other option for choosing your stakes, so if the user decides to stake a massive amount you could end up risking more than you want to.
On the other hand, you can't stake any more than what the user is staking so you are limited to what they have chosen or less.
It is possible to set a loss limit, but we would have liked some more advanced staking options.
The platform is still currently in "Beta" so perhaps this will be added at a later date... we certainly hope so.
We think that CopyBet is a great idea and we are sure it's going to become very popular. We'd all like to click a couple of buttons and sit back and watch the profits roll in without having to put any effort into research.
That is exactly what could be possible with CopyBet, so long as you are careful with whose bets you choose to copy and spread the risk as much as possible.
On the other side of things if you are already making a profit using Betfair, it could be a way to make an easy passive income whilst placing your usual bets.
At the moment, the staking and bank management issues are a big negative for us so we hope to see an improvement on this in the near future and we will be sure to update this review if we hear of any changes.