How Does a Sportsbook Make Money?

A sportsbook is a gambling establishment where people place wagers on various sports events. They are often found in casinos or on cruise ships, but many of them have also gone online to take advantage of the growing popularity of legal sports betting in the United States. Online sportsbooks are not subject to the same legal restrictions as physical ones, so they can offer more variety in betting lines and markets. However, it is important for potential customers to investigate each site before placing a bet. It is also important to note that profits from sports betting are considered taxable income in the United States, so it’s a good idea to track your winnings.

A sportsbook makes money in the same way a bookmaker does: by setting odds that will yield a profit over the long run. They make this possible by charging what’s known as the vig or juice, which is calculated as a percentage of each bet that is made. This way, the sportsbook can ensure that they’ll win a profit after all of the payouts have been processed.

It’s easy to see how public perception can affect a game, as people will bet on teams they root for or expect to win. This often leads to over/under bets, where the sportsbook sets a total and you can bet on it being over or under. Fortunately, sharp bettors can use this to their advantage. For example, if the Chiefs are expected to win but have a large number of bettors, you can fade them and bet against them, which will likely lead to an Over/Favorite bias.