1. Understand - Make sure you really understand what you're doing, both how the markets work and how spread betting works, including online trading platforms. You'd be amazed at how much money is needlessly lost by people who didn't fully understand what they were doing. For example, do you think a professional would ever say something like 'oh I didn't realise that could happen'? Want help? Download our Free spread betting training guide
2. Risk/Reward ratio - Understand the risk/reward ratio - if you want to have the potential for large profits you've also got to accept the potential of large losses. Successful spread betting, in fact any style of trading/investing, is more about managing and taking care of the risk rather the reward on offer. See Secret 4 - Profit and loss is totally different to winning and losing - which is one of our 10 Secrets to Successful Spread Betting
3. Use common sense and try to keep things simple - It doesn't pay to get clever in the markets, the simplest strategies based on common sense usually work the best.
4. Start small - If you're new to spread betting start trading with small sized positions. If a spread better has £3,000 to trade with (and he's new to the game) I would advise he deposits no more than £1,000 alongside trading the minimum amount per point. Then when he is more confident, probably after 3-6 months, add more capital to the account but only if it's been generating some profit. See Secret 1 - Trade small positions when starting out - which is one of our 10 Secrets to Successful Spread Betting
5. Be disciplined and stay that way - Take both your profits and losses when you're supposed to take them - that's one good definition of trading discipline. Also use stop losses, as the quote suggests -
"More money has been lost in the markets by people not using stop losses than all the other reasons put together"