Lay bets are the key to betting and betting exchanges. When you place a bet with a sportsbook, in a way, they are placing the lay bet against your bet. On a betting exchange, a lay bet is a bet on the specific outcome NOT to win. This is the only way to have people who would be counterparties to match their orders up. We have simplified lay bets by removing them from 2-way markets. Now you only need to consider them for 3-way or multi-way markets. The liquidity you see on the back side of the book are lay bets. These could be put up by bettors, market makers, or aggregated liquidity. These lay bets allow you to instantly bet ON the outcome you want to.
If you want to bet AGAINST an outcome (e.g. a draw NOT to happen in soccer), you would place a lay bet on draw. The odds you place it at are backer's odds. The price for a draw could be around 3.5. This means to back the draw, you get 3.5x your stake returned to you if you win (profit is 2.5x your stake). If you wanted to lay 3.5, your risk needs to be equal to your counterparty's reward, so you need to risk 2.5x your reward to place the bet. Lay bets might be more attractive at lower odds. If a favourite is 1.3 and you feel they could be in for a tough game, you could lay 1.3, risking 0.3 units to profit 1 unit. The maths for this is all shown in our bet slips and you can swap between defining the backer's stake (the traditional way) and showing your risk (our new way).