Poker is arguably the most popular table game. Many players sit at poker tables to pass the time with friends and family or compete against strangers. As much as the game is entertaining, we all want to have an edge at the table. So what do you need to stand out from the rest?
Why Should I Use A Poker Strategy?
Like most other casino games, poker requires an element of luck to win. As you play your hand, you can’t predict the next card. However, you still have some control; you can choose to fold, raise or call.
A poker strategy helps you know the best action to take at every game turn. An elaborate strategy can help you even when you’ve been dealt bad cards.
Can One Poker Strategy Help Me Win?
Unfortunately, online poker winning strategies can’t assure you of victory every time you sit at the tables. Even professional players with vast experience lose some games.
Poker in online casinos is a random game that is hard to predict. When you play virtual RNG poker, an algorithm influences the results. In live games, other players’ actions affect the outcome.
In addition, poker games have a house edge. The house edge is built into the game’s mechanics and favors the casino. You can’t beat the house, but the best poker betting strategies can help you reduce the house edge.
There are many benefits to a poker strategy. The most obvious is that you learn the game’s rules and how to turn them in your favor. Without a strategy, you’ll walk into the game blindly. Here’s how playing poker with a strategy improves your experience.
- It gives you game insights: when you’re new to poker, sitting at a table with experienced players can make you feel out of place. However, learning and practicing a betting strategy uncovers helpful table tips.
- Improving your math skills: mastering poker strategies comes with learning the numbers and odds involved in the game. By understanding the odds, you can do quick calculations as you play easily.
- Builds your game confidence: at a poker table, bluffing is a crucial skill that can win you games. It can also build your confidence, so you don’t scare easily when other players are bluffing.
- Manage your bankroll: like most casino games, managing your bankroll is a vital skill. A good poker strategy helps you to spend your deposits wisely at the tables.
Do I Need To Choose A Playing Style Before A Strategy?
When you research how to win poker, you’ll realize that most players follow four main game styles. Your game style largely influences the strategies you’ll adopt. Game styles can be classified this way:
This is a popular game style among many poker players. As it is labeled, it entails players being selective with their starting hands and barely entering the pot. Especially when they have a bad hand, tight players will choose to fold. Tight players prefer betting and raising over checking and calling at the table.
In poker tables, players who use a loose game style play a wider variety of hands. Even with weaker hands, loose players hardly fold and are likely to continue.
A tight player on the table isn’t afraid of taking risks. By observing aggressive players, you’ll notice they are inclined more to bet and raise. Usually, they anticipate that timid players will fold and are more likely to bluff.
A passive player is overly cautious and rarely takes risks. They would rather be safe than sorry. A passive player will likely check and call in a draw.
When to raise?
The best reason is when you have a strong hand and want your opponents to put more money into the pot. You can also raise as a rebuttal to your opponent’s bluff.
- $25/$50 full-ring game.
- You’re playing from a late position.
- Your hand is A♦J♦.
- The flop is 2♦8♠K♣.
In this situation, you should raise after the flop.
When to call?
Calling in a poker game keeps you in the hand. You may call a bet when you have the best hand or draw. You can also have a weak hand and call anyway. Players do this to bluff later on.
- $50/$100 full-ring game.
- You’re playing from a late position.
- Your hand is 10♣A♦.
- The flop is 10♦6♠2♠.
In this situation, you should call.
Understanding the pot odds
Learning the pot odds in poker helps you understand when to raise or call the game on a drawing hand. There are two main ways you can calculate the pot odds in poker.
You can use the ratio method to compare your card odds to the pot odds. When the pot odds are greater than the former, you can call.
In the percentage method, you raise or call when the percentage of you making straight on the next card is higher. You should fold if the pot’s percentage exceeds your card equity.
Two Types Of Online Poker Winning Strategies
You can either play poker cautiously or by reading your opponents. When you play using conventional strategies, you focus more on making moves to win the game against your opponents, or you can capitalize on their weaknesses.
|GTO strategy||Exploitative strategy|
|The game theory of optimal GTO involves a lot of math to support its cautious style. Using this method, you leverage your game knowledge and adhere to strict guidelines.||The exploitative strategy, on the other hand, focuses on exploiting your opponent’s weaknesses. To effectively use this strategy, you must keenly observe your opponents and see where they go wrong. |
Which Poker Strategies Should I Choose?
Depending on your level of play, you may want to employ different strategies. The variant you play influences your strategy. You’ll need a different strategy and game style to keep your hand in Texas Hold’em from Pai Gow Poker.
|Best strategies for a beginner||Best strategies for a pro||Best Poker tournament strategies|
|Position play. Act as the last player in the hand to observe other players.||Tight Aggressive. Play only a few hands you can control.||Short stack. Capitalize on weak players who can’t spot opportunities quickly.|
|Chip leader. Avoid unnecessary risks by making calculated calls, and minimal raises||Position play. Reading other players gives you a chance to plan your hands.||Loose Aggressive. Playing more hands and calling more gives you an edge over weaker players.|
Poker strategies for beginners
Here we’ll dive deeper into poker strategies you can use if you’re new to the tables.
- The Fibonacci strategy – involves increasing your bet every time you lose. In theory, you’ll eventually make up for what you’ve lost, plus make a profit.
- The Paroli strategy – with this, you only increase your stake size when you win.
- The D’Alembert system – this strategy involves increasing your bet by a set amount after every loss, but decreasing your stake by the same set amount after a win. It’s a relatively balanced strategy that isn’t as aggressive on your bankroll as the ones mentioned above.
Poker strategies for advanced players
As a seasoned player, you’re familiar with the game’s rules, so it’s easiest to adopt complex strategies. We’ll highlight a few strategies that match your play level.
- The high-roller strategy – the key principle in this style of play is that winning and losing streaks are temporary. It emphasizes you discontinue playing early enough when losing and balance your bets when winning.
- Advanced strategy two – increases your chances of riding the pony by recommending betting against the run even after an initial loss.
- Advanced strategy three – with this style, you increase your bets in the run to chase a higher profit. However, you don’t throw caution to the wind as it advises switching to a basic strategy when the shoe is low.
Poker tournament strategies
In a poker tournament, you’ll encounter players with different strategies in all stages. Using mixed strategies gives you better chances at the tables. You can mix the following styles to make it to the end.
- Chip leader – holding your cards close to yourself at the initial stages helps you build your stacks as players fall off.
- Loose aggressive – as the stack increases in the tournament’s middle stages, calling more can raise your stacks. Weaker players are likely to fold more in this stage, so it’s easier to call bluffs.
- Tight aggressive – when you’re only a few players at the table, it helps to hold on to your stacks. You can slowly weed out over-enthusiastic players by playing fewer hands.
Short-Term Or Long-Term Strategies: Which Is Best?
The best poker tips for beginners will tell you that thinking long-term is best. You can start the game with a losing streak even with the best strategies. You must understand how important luck is, along with skill. Without a long-term strategy, you’re likely overzealous, with subsequent hands taking heavy losses.
General Mistakes To Avoid As A Beginner In Poker
Poker mistakes can be costly, especially when you sit at competitive tables. While you can’t play perfectly as a beginner, some mistakes are too obvious. Avoid the following when dealing at the tables:
- Failing to understand basic concepts and terminology. Our dictionary page is filled with useful material for poker players at every level. As a beginner, you should get a handle on the basics.
- Overusing the same strategy. Poker is very diverse, with many play styles and variants. Using the same strategy in all sessions can cost you dearly. It’s helpful having several strategies to switch up your play.
- Going in blind. Luck plays a part in winning, but poker is still a game of skill. You set yourself up for failure when you sit at the table without a strategy.
- Being overly cautious. Better safe than sorry, but without taking risks, you can miss many opportunities in poker. As you develop a strategy, build your confidence to make bold calls.