Utilizing the Alligator Indicator in Binary Options Trading

The Alligator Indicator, a creation of Bill Williams for his "Trading Chaos" series, serves as a pivotal technical analysis tool in binary options trading. It aids traders in identifying potential trend reversals and market conditions of overvaluation or undervaluation. This article delves deeper into the Alligator indicator, exploring its advantages and optimal utilization in trading strategies.

Bill Williams' Alligator: Structure and Features

The Alligator Indicator comprises three moving averages (MAs) in its original version, known as the Jaw (blue), Teeth (red), and Lips (green), each with different periods and forward shifts on the chart. This setup allows traders to discern various market trends and potential changes in direction.

Installing and Setting Up the Alligator

Most trading platforms allow easy addition of the Alligator indicator through the indicators menu. Upon installation, traders can customize the indicator's parameters, including the MA periods and visual representation, to suit their trading system (TS). While Williams used specific default settings, adjusting these values can enhance the indicator's effectiveness, provided the proportional relationship between the MAs and their shifts remains consistent.

Trading with the Alligator

The Alligator inherently acts as a comprehensive trading system, offering signals for market entry and exit. For traders not yet accustomed to complex trading systems, the Alligator presents a simple yet effective starting point.

In Williams' Profitunity system, the red MA plays a crucial role, often dictating position exits. However, relying solely on the crossing of the Alligator's Teeth by price may lead to missed profit opportunities due to corrections and price volatility. Thus, employing at least two of the Alligator's MAs in trading decisions is advisable.

Trade Execution with the Alligator:

  • Buy signals are generated when the Lips (green MA) cross above the Teeth (red MA).
  • Sell signals occur when the Lips cross below the Teeth.

Optimizing Profit Taking:

Exit strategies could include waiting for the reverse signal, which maximizes profits in strong trends but requires continuous market monitoring. Alternatively, setting take-profit levels or using trailing stops can help secure profits.

Trading Corrections with the Alligator:

The Alligator's main challenges include signal delays and inertia, common among trend-following indicators. To capture profits from market corrections:

  • Confirm a clear bearish trend with the Alligator lines in sequential order: Jaw, Teeth, then Lips.
  • Enter sell trades when the price corrects upwards, crossing and then re-crossing the Lips downward.
  • Set stop-losses just above the signal candle's high, with take-profit at two to three times the stop-loss distance.

This strategy demands more discretion from the trader, especially in determining the extent of the Alligator's "open mouth" and setting take-profit levels, thus suiting more experienced traders.


The Alligator Indicator is a potent tool for binary options traders, capable of identifying trend reversals and optimal entry points. While effective on its own, integrating the Alligator with other technical analysis tools can significantly enhance trading strategies. As with any trading indicator, success with the Alligator requires practice, experience, and a solid risk management strategy.

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