Online poker is a game of cards that can be played for real cash wagers from the comfort of your own computer or mobile device. The games are available for all skill levels from the smallest stakes imaginable (literally pennies) to satellite entries into world class live tournaments.
The game is popular because it’s fun, easy to learn, intellectual and thrilling. It also rewards actual skill unlike slots or the lottery and can be done from any computer, tablet or phone at any time. It’s not surprising that millions of people around the globe play poker online, whether for entertainment or as a source of income.
There are many different types of poker games but the most popular is No-Limit Texas Hold’em. This game is simple to learn and very hard to master, making it a great starting point for new players. Thousands of no-limit Hold’em games are run online 24/7 at all stake levels.
The first step in playing poker online is to select a trusted and secure poker site. Once you have found one that meets your needs, follow the registration process to create a user account. You will be asked to provide your name, address, and date of birth. Some sites may require additional information such as your bank details or tax status. It’s important to choose a trustworthy site as you will be putting your personal financial information on the line.
Once you’ve registered, you can start by checking out the lobby page which is usually categorised into Cash Games, Tournaments, Sit & Go’s and whatever special format games the site runs. You can also find free play-money tables here which are a good place to get your feet wet. Depending on your preferences, you can also filter out specific game formats to help narrow down the selections.
It’s also worth checking out the Bonus Offers section as almost all online poker sites will offer some sort of sign up incentive to attract new players. These bonuses can be in the form of a percentage of your initial deposit or a set amount of free play-money. Many players actively move between sites collecting these bonuses, referred to as “bonus hunting”, which can significantly boost your profit per hour of poker play.
Using an appropriate strategy when playing poker is essential for success and the majority of the top players have some sort of system in place. It’s also a great idea to track your results online as this will give you an accurate picture of where you’re winning and losing and of the areas of your game that need work. Fortunately, most poker sites allow you to do this easily with session stats that give you a breakdown of your win-rate, number of flops seen and times you’ve gone to showdown.
It’s worth noting that it’s perfectly normal to “fail” when moving up the stakes. It happens to even the best professionals so don’t take it personally. Instead, just drop back down for a while and grind it out until you’re ready to try again.