There are few brands in the betting industry that are as well-known as Ladbrokes. The company is an institution these days and whilst they’ve seen many changes over the years, switching from being mainly a high street brand to really focusing their online efforts, the company has still been able to maintain their position as one of the best.
The recent merger with Coral, in terms of being a punter at least, has changed very little in terms of what we see. They’ve always been able to offer up a huge array of sports and betting markets, of which both remain today.
It will come as little surprise to hear that football betting still provides the main heartbeat to the Ladbrokes bookmaker. It’s here where they are able to spend the most time and money, and as a result are able to offer one of the biggest selections of games and betting markets in the entire industry.
Given the size of the industry and the vast array of competition, it’s a highly impressive thing to be able to do. Whilst many bookies share similar values, few will be able to boast the sheer volume of traffic and registered players that Ladbrokes do, underlining their dominance both for the sport and as a company.
One of things that will separate many bookies is the ability to get great prices for a huge array of bets and markets. The pricing structure needs to be on point, because if it’s not, there are a plethora of other sites that will allow punters to get a better price. Whilst features, gimmicks and promotions are appealing, in the long term, pricing is what people keep coming back for.
When comparing the likes of Ladbrokes to other bookies, we set out to be a little harsher than we might usually be. But, this is because we think they should be setting the example. It’s also because we want to see if people are buying into the brand or actually getting great prices.
The odds that we found for football betting was pretty mixed to be honest. We found many examples where Ladbrokes were able to provide the best odds for a single bet. In fact, there were some where they were best price on their own, which is very rare these days given the amount of money involved and the number of bookies.
|LADBROKES ODDS||AVERAGE ODDS|
The game above is from a friendly between Germany and Austria and as you can see, they are best price by some way for a Germany win. Whilst this is great, the other odds on offer for the draw and an Austrian win are both pretty poor, which isn’t uncommon, but still worth highlighting.
Overall, we would have to say that their pricing structure is pretty strong. We’ve tested Ladbrokes many times before, albeit not for a year or two now and have actually been quite disappointed by the results on offer in the past. However, they do seem to have improved this area of the site from the data we have been able to collect.
Are they the best when it comes to betting on football? Probably not, but they are a really solid choice and we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them based on this alone.
The site comes packed with a wide range of leagues to choose from. These are leagues based all over the world and the depth they go into is incredible. We even spotted games from the likes of Ecuador, Iceland and Peru, all markets we likely wouldn’t even think to bet on if they weren’t on offer.
Whilst the likes of these is impressive, it’s not something that is exclusive to Ladbrokes, with several other bookies these days offering up a huge range of bets from all four corners of the globe. It’s more a statement of how far reached betting is than what’s going on with Ladbrokes, but you certainty can’t take any marks away from Ladbrokes for offering them, as we would be highly disappointed if they weren’t there.
The market coverage is as good as you will find from any bookie. Most games will get well over 200 markets to choose from, with this number increasing even further the more high-profile and nearer kick off the games get. What separates the men from the boys here is really how well they perform for lower profile matches.
LADBROKES VERSUS COMPETITORS
A great example of this is the following game between Sport Racife PE and Atletico Belo MG from the Brazilian Serie A. OK, so it’s likely you haven’t heard of them, but that’s the point, this “lesser” game is getting over 170 markets to choose from, which is incredible.
Ladbrokes Markets: 171
BetVictor Markets: 40
To put that in perspective, BetVictor, who are widely regarded as one of the best for betting on football, have just 40 markets for the same game.
This is a common theme that we found throughout the site to be honest. The big games get a good converge, although not amazing, but the coverage for smaller games is so consistent and it’s here where Ladbrokes really excel in our opinion.
TOUCH LINE STATS
Ladbrokes do include a stats section for the football betting, although it’s not linked up to each individual game, so you may need to do a little bit of digging to get to where you need to be. It’s powered by Touch Line, who to be honest, are a company that is pretty new to us.
The layout is simple, but informative and what you get is an overview of the betting markets, the latest league positions graphed, current league form, head to heads from last 6 matches and the winning/losing margin from their last 20 games. It also includes a match facts section, which gives a synopsis of the games that are taking place and how they might end up. This is actually our favourite section and a feature that not all that many include, so kudos must go to Ladbrokes for this.
Ladbrokes have also added in a live streaming service. This is predominantly made up of football matches and offers up a huge range of games from around the world. As with all streaming services, games within the UK are very limited, but the likes of Spain, Italy, France and Germany are all well catered for, along with smaller, more niche leagues from all over the place.
The streaming service is free to use for existing customers as well. All you need is either a funded betting account or to have placed any kind of bet within the last 24 hours to gain access to all games that are streamed live.
Ladbrokes have been able to embrace the Twitter request for bets as well, which they call #GetAPrice. The concept is very simple in that all you need is send a tweet to Ladbrokes and their traders will come up with a price for you. It’s actually one of the biggest and most popular versions of this betting concept that we have seen, with dozens of bets listed on their website for each game.
The in-play betting section at Ladbrokes is an area that’s seen massive improvement in recent years. We remember it being pretty awful at one point, but we are happy to report that it’s so much better than it was.
The layout is pretty simple and you can easily see which games are taking place, the time of the match and the price on offer. It also allows you to toggle the prices between two markets; match betting and next team to score, which is a nice touch.
The in-play betting section really comes alive when you jump through to the next screen though and start to get in deep with the game that’s taking place. The first thing that will hit you is the match centre found at the top of the page. This shows exactly what is happening in that game and includes information such as who’s in possession, throw ins, corners, free kicks, bookings and of course, any goals that have been scored.
But, it’s the graphics in the match centre that really got us going. It looks about as good as we have seen and it’s super-fast. We’ve been able to compare games viewed on here to watching on satellite TV and the delay is next to none, which is great.
The adverts down the right-hand side is something that is annoying, but they don’t move around in terms of being a GIF or anything like that, so they aren’t all that distracting and pretty manageable after a while.
Aside from football, there will be little arguing with us when we say that horse racing will be the next biggest sport for the brand. As soon as you land in the horse racing section you can just tell that it’s a hive of activity and with it allows you to really get your teeth stuck into it.
Whilst we will get to the plethora of bells and whistles on offer from this section with Ladbrokes, we wanted to once again see how they stacked up in terms of their pricing structure, which is the most important section of any bookmaker.
RACING PRICING STRUCTURE
What we will say is that Ladbrokes are so consistent with their prices for horse racing. They are never far away and whilst not always best price, they could easily be used by a punter as their only racing site and be fairly confident that the price wasn’t going to be far from best price.
|LADBROKES ODDS||AVERAGE ODDS|
|Hint of Grey||6||5.93|
|What a Party||7||6.81|
|Bird For Life||7||6.88|
In the example above, from the 15:10 at Lingfield, the race highlights that Ladbrokes are indeed best price for the favourite, Hint Of Grey and almost best price for second favourite (although joint in Ladbrokes’ eyes), Affair. If you keep looking down the list they’re just never that far away.
It’s actually been really impressive to see, and we mentioned in the football betting section that we had previously reviewed them to be fairly average, with the same being applied to horse racing. We’re certain that things have got a lot better at Ladbrokes and rightly so, given their status within the betting industry and the massive database of players they now have.
If the merger with Coral and the formation of Entain had anything to do with it, we aren’t sure, but whatever they are doing with their trading team, they need to keep it up.
UK & IRISH RACING
There’s no doubt that the UK and Irish scene is the biggest section on the site. They offer up pretty much all races from both the UK and Ireland, which is good to see. To be honest though, most bookies do this now, which makes it more of a given than it used to be.
The horse racing section really starts to come alive within the racecard. It’s one of the best that we have seen, and we were delighted to see them team up with the Racing Post who provides information and form for them. The wealth of information is simply superb.
Starting with the main card, you get a ton of info from that of the horse/drawn, name of the horse, trainer, jockey, age, weight, rating, previous odds and current odds. But, you’re also able to expand information on a spotlight about how each horse has previously run and also about the recent results from that horse.
The top of the page allows you to go one step further though. With it you can get a verdict on the on how the race might pan out and also tips from the team within the Racing Post, both paid features of the Racing Post if you were to sign up directly with them.
On top of that you get a “form” button, which allows you to really go in depth with the information on offer. It gives you everything you could ever need to form your bets and with it is one of the best functions within a horse race betting card that we have come across.
One of the strongest features about the racing section is that the international sector is about as good as we have seen. There is racing from all over the world, but it’s worth mentioning that the coverage from within the US is second to none.
Compared to the UK coverage, it’s a little lower in terms of depth, with the biggest difference being that a lot of races don’t have as many features within the racecard as they do with the UK variations.
As you would expect, the Antepost section is very strong as well, with a good range of future races taking place. They are one of few bookies that actually date each of these races from the overview on the site. This may be something that sounds pretty minor, but the number of bookies that don’t actually do this is quite high and it can get frustrating trying to work out what’s running and where.
A neat feature that we also spotted and was attached to this was the horse racing specials section. Here it concluded a range of different bets, with everything from betting on the going for high profile races to that of certain horses going on to win the triple crown, along with jockey and trainer markets as well.
The current design on Ladbrokes’ website is so much better than it used to be. It was one of the ones that had been calling out for a new look and finally they got it. It’s still not perfect though and we aren’t a massive fan of the moving banners that often meet you within specific sports betting sections, including promotions and offers that are currently running.
On the whole, it’s not a bad site to use at all, but we will say that their mobile app is the better in terms of usability. The number of functions you get on the app can be a little limited, which is why the online site will always have its place, but if you know what you are looking for and where you need to be, there is no contest to be honest.
Navigation online works really well due to the inclusion of their breadcrumb trail that remain at the top of the page. This means that as you work through certain sports, then matches and into the markets, you can see exactly where you have come from and can just jump back a single page if needed, instead of going back to the homepage which can be highly frustrating.
Ladbrokes offer a considerable number of casino games and video slots. You’ll find all their games available under the main casino tab of the website, where you can begin searching in sub categories. These include casino game types such as slots, casino table games and live dealer games, alongside theme’s. These are essentially easier ways to search using terms like movies or TV, casual games, new games, and all games is on the end.
There’s a comprehensive number of video slots, spreading across virtually all different categories and themes. You’ll find everything from sticky wild bonuses and free spins galore along and simple, more traditional games.
One of the most popular slots Ladbrokes offer is PlayTech’s White King. This is the game that centres around a handsome, masculine Lion King. Follow him throughout his journey in Siberia, as he fights off fellow Lions, and (try) to stay with him through the hectic bonus round, as he opens up potential rewards.
It’s also worth noting that Ladbrokes Casino feature Playtech’s Age of the Gods series. The casino is powered by Playtech so all of their games are available here. Good news for Playtech fans.
There’s plenty of choice in the roulette department, you just need to decide what type of roulette you’re in the mood for and then fire away.
You’ll find all the regular roulette varieties that you’d expect to see like European Roulette, French Roulette and American Roulette. One of our favourites is the new 101 Roulette, a unique game that offers 101 different numbers to bet on. Single, straight-up bets return a whopping 100/1.
This is much bigger than if you were you playing conventional roulette, which offers 35/1 on a single number. Of course, the heightened reward comes with heightened risk but if your numbers drop you could have a big pay day.
You’ll find a varied and comprehensive blackjack section, with over 20 game variations to choose from. This includes Diamond Bet Blackjack, Cash Back Blackjack, Blackjack Surrender and our personal favourite, Perfect Pairs Blackjack. Here, you simply need to match your first two cards in order to secure a win.
All of these can be found on the blackjack page, you can even sort by popularity, so you can see what other players are enjoying most.
There are a good selection of video poker games to choose between. While most of these are duplicates of one another with most offering a gamble version and a non-gamble version, it’s still refreshing to see so much choice.
You’ll find games such as Joker Poker, Aces and Faces 4 and Jacks or Better, the common games in our opinion. These are alongside less frequently seen games like, for example, All American Video Poker, 2-Ways Royal Video Poker and Deuces Wild Multi Hand.
Ladbrokes offer a massive amount of choice in the other games department. You’ll find a host of game variations to enjoy, it’s probably easier to ask what’s not included.
If you’re a poker table game fan, you’ll find offerings such as 3 Card Poker, Caribbean Stud Poker, Casino Hold ‘Em and Ultimate Texas Hold’ Em. If you simply want to relax, and play a chilled out game, you’ll be inundated with scratch games, virtuals, and even Keno like lottery games.