Just a decade after the first bookmaker, Nairabet, launched in Nigeria, the Nigerian sports betting industry has grown in leaps and bounds. Currently, Nigerians spend about N2 billion per day betting on sports. Everywhere you turn, someone is offering sports betting tips – a testament to how the ecosystem has grown. Although there are close to a hundred licensed bookmakers in Nigeria, the market is dominated by a few players. If you’re looking for the best betting site in Nigeria where you can centralize all your betting, this article will help you, as we examine the top betting sites in Nigeria.
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The Nigerian Betting Market
The Nigerian betting market is huge — approximately 60 million Nigerians aged between 18 and 40 actively participate in sports betting, and the number is growing daily. A lot of different factors contributing to the rise of sports betting in Nigeria. Including the large population, the increasing sports culture, a fairly unregulated sports betting market, the proliferation of smartphones and the continued growth of internet penetration.
To add to the aforementioned factors, the network of betting shops means access to betting is not limited to online channels. As far back as 2016, Bet9ja was making $10 million (about N350 million) in monthly turnovers, while Nairabet made about 30% (N115 million) of that according to KPMG. These bookies also enjoy a profit margin of 20%-30%. On average, Nigerians spend N3,000 (about $10) per day on sports betting.
What makes a great betting website
Great betting sites don’t happen by chance. They are a result of user consideration, investments, and a commitment to excellence. So, exactly what factors make one betting site good, and the other bad?
1. User Experience
There are some betting sites which seem to have no sense of direction at all, and you end up getting lost the minute you log in. Sub-menus are hard to find, placing bets is a chore, and even making deposits and withdrawals will have you pulling your hair out in frustration. The colours are quite awful and badly combined! And the website speed? At a snail’s pace! Like all good websites, sports betting apps and sites should be easy to navigate and manageable, even if you’re a first-time user. Great websites are user-friendly and easy to follow, have well-balanced and contrasting colours, are fast, and have an excellent and functioning search tool. And, most importantly, the betting site must be mobile-friendly.
2. The Features and Free Money
Betting is not easy and any bookmaker that makes your life easier by the features they have on their site is a winner any day. Let’s start with the basic features such as cash out and live betting. Those features are the norm these days, but how many sports are covered under the live betting? A lot or just a few? Features such as multiple betting options are non-negotiable too. However, features that allow you to recoup some of your stake or earnings even if one game cut your ticket are some differentiating factors on some websites.
With heavy competition among betting sites, most offer a first deposit bonus to lure new customers, but the question is: what happens after signing up? That’s what separates the great sites from the not-so-great ones. Occasional betting bonus promotion that rewards your consistency and increases your earnings should also be on the table. Using these promotions and bonuses with our sports betting tips can help increase your earnings.
3. Customer Service
Let’s keep it real here: you should leave any betting sites that have terrible customer service. It’s as simple as that. Just simply having an email support line is not great – it’s the bottom of the ladder when it comes to customer service. The good betting sites offer other customer support channels: a telephone line, live support, and support through their social media handles. In simple terms, they should meet their customers wherever they are. It is, however, not enough to have these channels, but also have enough well-trained, educated, and responsive agents on the other side of the table. More so, in a country like Nigeria, they should offer multiple languages. At the barest minimum, the languages on offer should be English and Pidgin (a local version of the English Language).
4. Market Volume
Variety is sometimes described as the spice of life and this is truer for the relationship between punters and betting sites. While a betting site may not cover every single option in the world, it should still offer enough to meet your needs, especially when you want to have a single betting account for all your sports betting. The betting site should cover plenty of sports and offer options in different leagues (not just the major leagues but the lower leagues too) from different countries.
5. Customer Opinions and Transparency
Great betting sites have good reports from their customers, while the internet is littered with cusses from customers who have experienced horrible service from terrible betting sites. It’s important to take note of customer opinions in your research of a betting site as the proof is in the pudding, especially in a country where the regulatory framework is not yet solid. Additionally, good betting sites are upfront and clear on the terms and conditions of using their services, while the bad ones tell you new things after the fact or dispute your earnings on some flimsy excuses.
Based on the aforementioned factors and our research into betting sites that operate in Nigeria, our top betting sites are Melbet, Bet9ja, 1xBet, Betway and Betmojo. Below, we provide a brief bookie review of these betting sites in no particular order.
Melbet is one of the relatively new bookies in Nigeria, but it is now one of the most popular sports betting site in the country. Melbet is a model for diverse Sportsbook and competitive odds. The sportsbook covers over 30 sports including Rugby, Athletics, Football and many more. They also offer amazing welcome bonus and promotions. So if you are looking for a bookmaker where you can get value for your investment, then Melbet is the place to be. Melbet accepts the Naira and they offer easy payment methods. The website is user-friendly and the navigation is smooth.
Registration with Melbet is a walk in the park. Customers can create an account in minutes without breaking a sweat and usually are rewarded with up to a whopping 200% on the first deposit up to 100,000 NGN. Although the bonus can rise up to 130,000 NGN, customers have to enter the promo code ml_110049 for the 30% extra bonus to get up to 130,000 NGN. The minimum deposit to activate the bonus is 455 NGN.
Funding your betting account is also very easy. Melbet accepts card deposit. Some of the debit cards include Mastercard, Visa card and Verve. Payment cannot also be made via internet banking, and online wallet such as Ecopayz and Quickteller. Customers can also enjoy a great betting experience using the Melbet mobile app. Basically, the app offers the same services as the desktop version and this makes live betting seamless. And if you are a casino buff, you will be spoilt for choices as there are many casino games you can choose from. The games include blackjack, baccarat, online slots, poker and many more. Overall, your betting needs are well taken care of on the Melbet and you will not be wrong to sign up on Melbet.
In terms of betting options on offer, there’s arguably no Nigerian betting website that can match 1xbet, based on what we’ve experienced. 1xbet can seem a little overwhelming at first glance, but once you get the hang of it, it’s one of the most enjoyable betting sites in Nigeria. Unlike most betting sites, 1xbet offers dedicated email addresses that cater to separate issues such as payments and finances, security, and general inquiries, which speeds up response time. 1xbet also has a dedicated telephone for Nigeria. In total 1xbet offers 42 channels for depositing money into your account and 34 channels for withdrawing your funds, with most taking a maximum of 15 minutes. In terms of bonuses and promotions, you’ll have your pick of betting bonus promotion when you register with 1xbet. It offers a 200% first deposit bonus up to ₦100.000, and also runs the occasional deposit offers on selected days. For more in-depth details about the bookmaker, you can read our 1xbet bookie review.
Betway’s experience in sports betting is evident in its reliable services and wide range of betting offers. The large sportsbook provides multiple events with plenty of betting options at competitive odds. The Betway website layout is designed to make everything easily accessible to users. All the important features you need regularly can be seen on the homepage, for example, live betting, upcoming events, and on-going promotions. The betting experience is even better through the Betway mobile app, which allows you to live stream selected sports events through your smartphone as you continue betting. Betway customers can choose from a wide range of payment options that are all secure and reliable. Furthermore, their customer care team is available 24/7 and can be reached through multiple channels. New customers will particularly be happy with the welcome bonus of 100% up to N100,000. This is among the biggest bonus offers by bookmakers in the Nigerian market and the playthrough requirements are not that hard to achieve. If you are looking for a dependable bookmaker with high quality services and attractive offers then Betway is the place to go. This also shows in our Betway bookie review.
Betmojo is a new player in the online betting ecosystem in Nigeria. It is owned and operated by West African Betting Investment Limited. They are fully licensed by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission to operate in Nigeria. They are attracting new players with their offer of competitive odds and numerous promotions. You can peruse our Betmojo review page to learn about their offers.
A big draw for Betmojo is the user experience, as customers can navigate the site with ease. This is due to the minimal but yet colourful outlook of the site. They offer diverse betting markets for football and other sports. However, they are very big on football. This means that you can bet on your favourite leagues and competitions.
The payment methods are also pretty much up to industry standard. Customers of the option of depositing funds and withdrawing using USSD, Bank transfers as well as Mastercard and Visacard.
Betting on the go is also seamless with Betmojo mobile app. The app is compatible with Android and users can also get in on the action with in-play betting.
As far bonuses are concerned, Betmojo do not offer a welcome bonus or offer at the moment, but they do have a referral bonus. With this bonus, a customer can get cash rewards for up to six months. Punters will get 10% of the losses of every user referred and additionally, another 5% of the losses of users introduced to Betmojo by your Referees. The earnings are paid into the betting account of the customers at the beginning of each month, unless it is zero.
The Nigerian betting ecosystem is growing each day and the top betting sites at the forefront of the charge include Bet9ja, 1xbet, Betway and Betmojo. These websites offer the best betting experience, provide great support, offer multiple deposit and withdrawal options, and interesting bonuses. Any of these betting sites will serve you well, especially when you combine what’s on offer with our sports betting tips. Don’t forget to read our in-depth bookie review on these bookmakers to further aid your research.