Home I All Guides I DFS Guides I Beginners Guide I DFS Bankroll Management
If you want to enjoy success on the DFS scene, then you will need to have the ability to pick winning line ups. There really is no two ways about it. Drafting the right players – at the right time – is the only method for guaranteeing victory. But an effective bankroll management strategy will ensure that the financial side of things takes care of itself, leaving you to spend more time researching your picks and setting your line ups.
So what are the basic rules of effective bankroll management? How can it help you to achieve long term daily fantasy success?
DFS players have a number of different options available to them in terms of entering contests. You can enter different tournaments with the same line-up, try various contests with a revolving selection of picks, or adopt a multi-entry strategy where you go in deep to the same contest with a number of entries (same picks) in an attempt to maximize winnings from a successful draft.
Any of the above strategies are fine, and it really is up to your unique personality as to which you go for. The good news is that all are receptive to the basic tenets of clever bankroll management. But of course you need your picks to really come to the party if your multi-entry policy is to be a success. Risk high, reward high.
By entering a single contest with a variety of different line-ups, the equation changes: risk low, reward high. That’s because you significantly increase your chances of finishing in the money by reducing the number of opponents you are up against.
The same is true when entering multiple contests with different line ups: risk low, reward medium. By increasing the pool of players that you are picking from, you raise your chance of selecting those all-important high point scorers. By entering more contests, you lessen the risk of the ‘fluke factor’, which is where another team manager drafts a line up seemingly at random that ends up winning. Hey, we’ve all been on the receiving end of that play.
There is no harm in entering a single line up into multiple tournaments, but utilising this strategy requires ultra-effective bankroll management.
It all comes down to striking that age-old balance between risk and reward. If you have $250 in your bankroll and you enter a $250 contest then your risk is at its ultimate, but your reward will be obvious. If you choose to enter a series of $5 contests then clearly your risk is spread, and the idea here is to accrue consistent profits over a longer period of time.
The most efficient way to conduct your DFS spending is utilizing a set percentage for every contest entered. If you want to enjoy prolonged success in daily fantasy, this is the way to go. Here’s the reason why:
If you enter $5 contests alone, you will have 50 ‘buy ins’ and thus 50 chances to win from your $250 budget. Let’s say these are the Double Up tournaments where the top 50% of players can double their stakes, and you go on to win half the time. That means your return would be $10 (the prize money for each contest) multiplied by 25 (the number of wins from your entries), which equals $250.
So, with just a success rate of 50%, you can break even on your initial budget. Thus, if you achieve just a 51% success rate in your contests entered then you turn a profit….achievable, right?
Of course, GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) contests generally attract a wider pool of entrants than Double Ups, so your risk is greater there. But if you have a bankroll management strategy in place, at least you can mitigate your risk.
If you go in hard with a $250 buy-in contest, then the rewards are clear to see. But your risk is 100%, and you will thus need a 100% success rate to return a profit. A risk of 51% against 100%? It’s a no brainer, surely?
So, unless you have a decent stack of funds ready to deposit into your DFS account, the latter ‘all in’ approach could see you parked on the bench and out in the cold for a while!
Do you want to hear something that gamblers and DFS players like to sweep under the rug? Everyone endures losing streaks, and do you know why? Because the laws of probability say so.
Imagine if you placed a $1 wager on 100 different coin tosses. Would you expect to win 50% of the time, given that there is an equal chance that the coin will land on either heads or tails? No, of course not. It could be 50:50, or it could be 55:45, 75:25, or even 100:00 one way or another.
And remember, that’s an example with just two variables. Think about daily fantasy and how volatile each gameweek can be, and you will then have a better understanding of why losing streaks occur. Eventually, you should regress to the mean.
This is where effective bankroll management becomes so essential, however. We’ve all drafted line ups that look a dream and end up a nightmare; other times our picks have a habit of surprising us for the better. Managing your money wisely will cater for both of these eventualities.
If you follow our weekly guides to picking the best teams, then hopefully the concept of losing will not enter your vocabulary! But hey, this is daily fantasy sports and so we’re taking a gamble: a losing streak can be a reality.
So it makes sense to set a daily, weekly, or monthly budget and stick to it. That way you can calculate the maximum amount you stand to lose, assuming that you don’t return any prize money from contests entered.
By managing your bankroll in percentage terms, you will have funds in place over a longer period of time. This helps you to get through the bad days and enjoy your successes!
Try and think about your DFS ventures as a business investment. If you play in Double Up contests against 49 other players, then your chances of winning are statistically greater than if you enter a 1000 player league.
So when considering entry fees and your bankroll, be smart in calculating how much you are willing to pay.
If you are want to learn how to make the most of the salary cap, read our guide:
Masterclass: How to Make the Most of the Salary Cap
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