How do you choose the right pay per head? With so many options out there, sometimes the decision can be downright hard.

Because the wrong choice could cost you a significant amount of money and wasted time and effort.

Fortunately, there’s a way for you to determine whether a pay per head is worth its salt.

But first let’s get past the reasons why you should be using a pay per head sportsbook in the first place.

Why you should ditch the pen and paper

If you’re a bookie, you might still be doing things the old way. Maybe you’re used to taking bets by hand or keeping records in some spreadsheet.

But, apart from the obvious time-suck, that way of doing things also severely limits how you manage your business and the money you make.

How exactly can a pay per head services company help you?

 If you’re a one-man-operation, it’s likely you’re hard-pressed for time, especially if you’re taking calls from your players.

And, when NFL football comes along there’s nothing worse than not being able to take plays because you’re tied up on the phone.

What a pay per head sportsbook (PPH sportsbook) will do, is take out most of the time-consuming tasks off of your hands.

In exchange for a fee per player, the PPH will manage things like the actual booking of bets while giving you other tools like a website and a call center that make your life much easier.

How a pay per head can keep more profits in your pockets

Typically, when you wanted to offer your players more betting options or online betting, for example, you would have to work with an offshore sportsbook.

These types of agreements usually meant you would have to share your profits with the sportsbook under an arrangement that could be as high as a 50% cut of your winnings.

If you agree that giving up half of your profits would pretty much suck the life out of your business then paying a low weekly fee per player shouldn’t be too hard of a decision.

For example, say you have 30 players and 20 of them make bets in a week’s time.

If you happened to make a profit of $4,000 because most of your players lost, you’d probably be pretty vexed that you’d have to share half of that with the offshore book.

Does that sound right to you?

But, if you’re paying $15 per head that means you would pay a total of only $300 at the end of the week (you only pay for active players).

Is there a reason you wouldn’t use a pay per head?

Yes, there are certain circumstances when it’s probably better you not use a PPH.

If some of your customer’s action is small, you might run into the problem that whatever winnings you gain from that player won’t cover the pay per head fee.

For example, if you’re paying $15 per head and someone makes two $22 bets at -110 vig and they lose one bet while winning the other resulting in a $2 profit then you’d be out $13 for the week and potentially more if that client keeps on making bets of that small amount.

In any case, it’s up to you to weigh the benefits of using a pay per head versus doing it all yourself. It all depends on your book of players and the numbers you handle each week.

How to choose the right per head

Now that you’re more familiar with the workings of a pay per head, how exactly do you go about determining which one to choose?

Good question.

Here are eleven more questions you should ask yourself before diving headfirst into a waterless pool.

  1. Does the pay per head have front-line experience?

There’s no substitute for experience in this industry. The fact is that running a sportsbook is hard and without at least a few years of experience there’s practically no way to escape unscathed.

Back in the good old days, people with in-depth knowledge of both sports and betting were worth a pretty penny because they were the ones that kept sportsbooks from going broke.

These days, you might find some people who can’t tell the difference between a point spread and a moneyline but are quick to sell you the reason why you should let them handle your players.

While the advantages of using bookie software are many, nothing beats being in the trenches of a sportsbook and actually knowing what it takes to run one.

  1. Is the pay per head a fly-by-night shop or is it professionally run?

The sportsbook industry is plagued with scam operations that will milk you of your hard earned dollars.

You should always work with companies that have a proven track record, a lot of experience, and the personnel needed to manage your clients properly.

You don’t want your clients managed by amateurs who will not care how your players are treated. This doesn’t mean that it has to be a gigantic company, but they should at least have enough people to take the volume of bets of the NFL season.

  1. What other services are offered?

You might only want to offer sports betting, but you’d probably be leaving a ton of money on the table if you do.

That’s why it’s important you find out if there are other services, such as casino and horse betting, available.

In fact, some pay per heads offer live betting and live casino which could exponentially increase your revenues.

  1. How did you hear about the pay per head?

The best case scenario is that you’d be recommended a reputable per head. And obviously it’s up to you to do due diligence.

The alternative is that you visit a pay per head review site and do some additional research.

It shouldn’t be left unsaid that it’s always, always, always do your own research to make an informed decision.

You can’t cry over spilt milk if you didn’t take enough care to do even some basic research.

  1. Does the pay per head specialize in a certain market or niche?

While you may only be interested in catering to English-speaking players, there are other companies that focus on other specific markets such as the Asian market.

If you do cater to these niches then you know they have their own idiosyncrasies and it’s important you deal with a company that’s familiar with them.

  1. What reporting does the company offer?

You can’t improve what you don’t measure and if you’re not measuring you’re probably eventually going to face a rude awakening.

If the company you’re analyzing doesn’t have built in reports in their bookie software then it’s probably not a good choice to go with.

  1. Is the pay per head knowledgeable of what KPIs you should be paying attention to?

What are the most important indicators of your sportsbook’s health? Meaning, can the pay per head help you in determining what your hold percentage is, what your player’s activity is, what your settlement activity is?

These are all critical if you’re looking to be a successful bookie.

  1. What type of software do they use?

Most companies use standard sportsbook management software such Digital Gaming System’s (DGS) software as their core system.

There are some companies that use their own home-built system, but for most bookies using something that’s tried and tested should be good.

If there are customizations you need, you can always ask whether or not it’s possible.

  1. Who will deal with your players?

If your clients will be calling in their bets, then you should really find out if they’re speaking with trained personnel.

There’s nothing worse than having your players call in to place a bet and speaking with someone that doesn’t know the first thing about sports and how to take a bet.

  1. What is your gut telling you?

Really, this is the acid test. If there’s something you feel is off then you should pay attention to that gut feeling because it’s likely there’s something wrong.