5 Online Poker Strategies That Actually Work (Max Profit!)

5 Online Poker Strategies That Actually Work

This article was written by blackrain79.com contributor Fran Ferlan

Studying advanced poker strategy these days can be intimidating. Under the surface, poker is an incredibly complex game, and mastering it is a lifelong journey.

However, becoming a winning poker player isn’t nearly as complicated if you follow the right formula. 

With the proper game selection, bankroll management and following these 5 simple, but highly effective online poker strategies, you’ll start crushing the games in no time

And you might even turn poker into a profitable side hustle or a full time pursuit. Let's jump into it!

1. Practice Table Selection and Seat Selection (Like it's Your Job)

One of the many advantages of online poker is the ability to table select and select. I’d add to it the ability to choose the sites to play on, as well. 

Online poker sites offer a variety of bonuses and perks as a reward for choosing to play on their site. 

Also, the lesser known sites could potentially draw in a bigger number of recreational players, so it pays to shop around and find the best one for you.

Anyway, when playing online, you should get into the habit of carefully selecting the tables and seats, because that way you’ll set yourself up for a potentially profitable session before you even start playing. 

You should look for tables that have a high percentage of players per hand. This signifies a potentially loose and soft table with plenty of recreational players.

These are the players who consistently make a lot of really bad plays like Nathan talks about in his new video.

And that of course means big profits for you! So you want to try to sit down to the direct left of one of these players.

This way, you'll be able to isolate them preflop and play in position against them postflop, so you’ll be in the best spot to take their money before everyone else.

Bonus points if you also manage to find a seat to the direct right of very tight players, aka the nits. 

This way, you won’t have to worry too much about them reraising you and putting you in a lot of uncomfortable spots. You also get the opportunity to steal their blinds.

Bottom line guys, having at least one bad player at your table at all times, is one of the absolute best and proven ways to consistently win big in poker.

2. The Most Profitable Strategy is: Tight and Aggressive (TAG)

When it comes to online poker, the tight aggressive approach is the way to go. It might sound trite, but it still works like a charm, especially at the lower stakes. 

What makes this strategy so effective is the fact that it exploits the overall tendencies of the majority of the player pool you’re up against, namely the loose and passive recreational players, aka the fish. 

They will usually play way too many hands, call down too much, chase draws they shouldn’t be chasing and so on. 

Therefore, the best strategy when playing against them comes down to three critical components: 

1) Being very selective with your starting hand selection preflop,

2) Playing in position as often as possible

3) Playing very aggressively postflop

You should only play hands that have some sort of playability postflop, meaning they are either very strong in and of themselves (like big pocket pairs, or have the potential of making strong combinations (like suited connectors).

This means playing only about top 20% of all hands, like pocket pairs, broadway hands, suited Aces and suited connectors. The rest is trash and should be thrown away.

You will find charts on exactly what hands to play in my popular 6max poker strategy and full ring poker strategy articles.

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3. Value Bet the Fish Relentlessly

Most of the money you win in poker will come from your strong value hands. The problem is, strong hands don’t really come around often, so when they do, you have to make the most of it. 

This means never missing an opportunity to increase the pot size, especially against fish. When you have a strong hand, don’t try to get cute and go for some deceptive lines, like slowplaying. 

Chances are, your deception will go over most of your opponents heads, and you’ll leave money at the table. 

Instead, play your strong hands as straightforwardly as possible. Also, don’t worry about scaring your opponents off with big bets. 

If they have something, they will call you down, on the off chance you might be bluffing, or on the off chance they hit their miracle backdoor straight draw. 

Don’t bluff them and always charge them a premium for their ludicrous draws.

Lastly, make sure you are using a good poker HUD so that you always know who the recreational players are at your online poker table.

4. Bluff the Weak Regulars!

On the other hand, you’re bound to run into a number of players who aren’t totally clueless, but aren’t quite skilled either. All they know is “playing tight”, and that’s about as far as their poker knowledge goes. 

They will play a reasonable amount of hands preflop, but will be way too passive and timid postflop, unless they have a really strong hand. And if they do, they’ll let you know. 

A successful advanced poker strategy against them is the opposite of the one you should employ against the fish, and that is bluffing a lot.

In a recent video Nathan walks you through a big bluff versus a weak regular, step by step.

There are even more ways to exploit the weak regs though.

You should also be stealing their blinds a lot, 3-betting them preflop (reraising when they open-raise), barreling them often postflop (firing a bet on the flop, turn and river), check-raising when playing out of position against them and so on.

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They will often give up and “just let you have it this time”, and when they play back against you, you can be pretty sure they have you beat. 

The added benefit of “going berserk” against them is after a while they’ll start calling you down wider. 

So once you actually do wake up with a monster hand, you can value bet them as much as you would a totally clueless fish, and they will look you up just the same.

This "meta-game" expected value from bluffing is something that is discussed in much more detail in Modern Small Stakes.

Bottom line though, you probably need to bluff more, and it is ok if you get caught once in awhile. It means you are doing it right!

In fact, if you are never getting caught bluffing, I would consider that to be a problem, because it means you probably aren't doing it enough.

5. Play Your Draws Very Aggressively

This was something that was briefly touched upon in previous points, but warrants further examination. Most of your money will come from strong value hands, but they don’t come around too often. 

Bluffing can be profitable in right spots, but it’s also a higher risk play, because you will get called down from time to time. 

This is why a good semi-bluffing strategy can be insanely profitable, which is something that nearly all advanced poker training programs are teaching these days. 

A semibluff is a bet made when you don’t have a strong hand yet, but it can be improved on future streets. So when you flop a very strong draw, like a straight or a flush draw, always consider semibluffing. 

The reason this play works so well is twofold: 

First, it can be outright profitable, because you can get your opponent to fold a stronger hand, and second, even if you do get called, you still have some hand equity to fall back on, and potentially win a huge pot if your draw completes. 

When you have a strong draw, it might be prudent to start building the pot earlier, as opposed to waiting for your draw to complete, because even if it does, your opponent could figure it out and might not be inclined to pay you off. 

As a rule of thumb, the stronger your draw, the faster you should play it. This is covered in much more detail in The Micro Stakes Playbook.

Use These 5 Online Poker Strategies to Consistently Win Big!

Playing poker online might seem intimidating at first, but there are also many advantages to it if you know where to look. Arguably the biggest advantage of online poker is the ability to table select and seat select. 

By sniping the seat to the direct left of the recreational player(s), so you can isolate them preflop and play in position against them postflop. 

You will have the informational, as well as the skill advantage over them, and will be in the best spot to take their money first.

The TAG style is the most simple and effective strategy to start winning quickly. And the best way to quickly learn this strategy is with the free BlackRain79 poker cheat sheet.

It involves being very selective with your starting hands, playing them in position, and playing them very fast and aggressively postflop.

In practice, this means value betting the recreational players, and never missing the chance to build up the pot when you have a strong hand. 

Forget about deceptive lines like bluffing or slowplaying, just inflate the pot as much as possible when you think you have the best hand and count your money.

Conversely, if you’re up against tight and timid regulars, go the opposite direction and bluff them more. 

Keep applying the pressure, because chances are they’ll let you have it far more often than not. If they fight back, slow down and back off. 

Finally, a great strategy to increase your winnings is learning when and how to semibluff. 

If you have a strong draw, always consider playing it aggressively, rather than passively. That way, you’re giving yourself more ways to win the pot, and not just relying on getting lucky and hitting your draw. 

You will either win the pot by making your opponents fold, or if they don’t, you still have some hand equity to fall back on. 

So there you have it. These five strategies are more than enough to transition you from a losing player to a solid winner. 

Just bear in mind that poker has a short-term luck element involved. It’s what makes it exciting, but it also means that you might not get the results you’re hoping for right away, even if you do everything right. 

If that happens, just focus on improving your game and expanding your knowledge. If you put in the effort, the results will take care of themselves eventually.

Lastly, to learn the complete step by step strategy to start dominating at the poker table, grab a copy of my free poker cheat sheet.

5 Online Poker Strategies That Actually Work