8 Key Points To Note
We cover everything you need to know about online poker on the hub page, but here are some selected areas of the game that are focused on the game from a ‘poker for beginners’ perspective.
1. What do I need?
From an equipment perspective, this is straightforward. You will need a reliable internet connection (preferably broadband to ensure stability and give you some speed) and a laptop/PC – or of course a suitable mobile for playing mobile poker.
So that part is easy, it’s when you get to the knowledge requirements that poker starts to get more interesting. As a poker beginner you’ll need to cover a lot of ground before you’re ready to play in cash games, but learning the basics is easy and will quickly get you to a stage where you can practice free poker or play in freeroll (free to enter) poker tournaments.
2. Poker Rules
As in all types of skill games, understanding the rules is critical. Poker rules are easily understood, and there are many resources outside of our site which will help you with understanding them. Once you begin to appreciate the basics, you’ll soon see that these are shared by all the poker game variations – Texas Holdem, Omaha, Stud, Casino Poker, Horse…and others.
3. Poker Hand Rankings
Of course, you’ll need to have a good understanding of poker hands and rankings – which hands are better than others. Knowing whether your hand is a strong or weak one is essential. It will also be good to take a look at a poker glossary and get to know the different terms used in online poker.
4. Poker Games
Choosing the right game for your style can mean the difference between great success and a constant struggle to win. Focusing on a specific game type is good advice at this stage. It’s worth reading more on poker game types, and getting a good understanding before you begin playing for real.
Online poker offers you a massive choice in types of poker games, with Texas Holdem the most popular. All of the leading rooms offer Texas Holdem games, but most also cater for players wishing to play Omaha, Razz, 7 Card Stud, 5 Card Stud, and other Stud varieties. There are also many types of casino card games where you’re playing one on one against a dealer.
There are also lesser known Lowball poker games where the aim is to get the lowest hands possible, while Blackjack Poker is gradually becoming more popular.
Add to this the choice between poker tournaments and cash ring games, and the different types of staking such as fixed limit, no limit, and pot limit, and you can see that the combinations of game types open to you are exhaustive.
In recent years there’s been significant development of fast-fold poker games which are designed to speed up play and avoid waiting to play a new hand if your current one is no good. Rush is one to remember and gives fast hands where folding gets you moved to a new table and a new hand instantly. Zoom is another to note – different, fast, and a lot of fun.
5. Practice, Poker Tutorials and Poker Schools
There are thousands of poker review websites, online poker rooms, books, and magazines all focused on online poker. The advice is to spend as much time as you can studying. Many of the online poker rooms have tutorial and poker school sections for poker beginners, and there are a number of independent dedicated online poker schools.
Studying and practice is the only way you can get the edge that will bring long term success, and tutorials can give you a great start. Practicing poker strategy should be the first thought on your mind once you’ve decided to move deeper into learning the game.
Practice is extremely important and there is no substitute for experience. One of the ways to gain experience is by playing free poker until you’re ready to progress to cash games and tournaments. Almost all of the online poker rooms offer free poker play at the practice tables. You can register with these and download the software free too, and play for free for as long as you like.
6. Basic Poker Strategy and Tips
Once you have the basics of poker for beginners covered, you can start to work on understanding poker strategy. Poker strategy is the term given to how you play during games – playing appropriately on the strength of your starting hand, the potential hand you might be able to achieve, the position you’re in at the table, the amount of chips you or your opponents have, the playing style of your opponents, and how many chips are either in or likely to be in the pot. Poker strategy also covers what to do and when – the well known arts of bluffing, betting, and folding…..read more about basic poker strategy…..
7. How do I deposit money to play?
Once you’ve registered an account with an online poker room, you’ll find there are many different deposit options, from debit and credit cards through to money transfer options such as Neteller and Moneybookers. Depositing is easy, but before you sign up anywhere make sure you’re getting the chance to take advantage of the best poker bonus offers.
8. How do I know there’s no cheating, is online poker safe and secure?
Remember that in an online poker room, you’re not actually playing against the poker room (except for casino poker of course) but against other players. The poker room makes a profit by taking a small percentage of each pot, called the rake. So there’s no worry that the poker room will try to cheat you because it has nothing to gain. Strict security measures are in place to ensure no players try to cheat, and most poker rooms have their software and games audited on a regular basis by independent auditors.