The Ultimate Tips and Strategies for Beginner Poker Players


The Ultimate Tips and Strategies for Beginner Poker Players


Two hands holding playing cards on a green felt table.

The Ultimate Tips and Strategies for Beginner Poker Players


Two hands holding playing cards on a green felt table.

Are you learning how to play poker online? If so, the first few games can be overwhelming, especially if you’re playing alongside people with more experience. The great news is that, as with most things in life, practice makes perfect when it comes to online poker.

Here are a few tips and strategies to help you hone your skills and enjoy every second of this long-time gambling favorite.

Stop Worrying About Winning

This advice will benefit beginners playing any number of online casino games. Of course, every poker player wants to walk away from all of their live or online poker tournaments with an impressive sum of money in their pockets, but the reality is that this doesn’t always happen. Not only will going into a game with this expectation lead to disappointment more often than not, but it could also contribute to the development of irresponsible gambling habits. You will also struggle to focus when you’re only worried about winning. Try your best to tune out what’s happening around you and to set aside any self-doubt. Most importantly, play because you enjoy it. You might be surprised by what happens when you focus less on winning.

Learn the Lingo

It might seem simple, but one of the most important aspects and perhaps one of the most intimidating as a beginner is just learning “poker lingo.” The game seems like it comes with a language all of its own, with phrases such as three-bet (3-bet), cutoff, double gutshot straight draw, and open-ended-straight-draw.

Take the time to learn all the terms and try not to get frustrated. Whenever you hear a word you don’t understand, be sure to ask other players what it means or look it up online.

Hit the Books

The best way to get better at poker is to study the game, learn from the pros, and form your own strategy. Speak to any professional poker player, and they’ll tell you that great players are made both on and off the felt.

If you really want to take your online poker tournaments seriously, hiring a poker coach or signing up to take online poker courses is worth considering. There are also plenty of books available to help you improve your skills and your general knowledge regarding making the most of the game. The upside of all this studying and practice? Poker can help you in your everyday decision-making, so it’s well worth it.

Don’t Overdo It

A man in a suit holding playing cards and poker chips.

Two rules of thumb when playing video poker online or live poker tournaments are: avoid playing too many hands, and avoid bluffing too often. A common beginner mistake is going for gold no matter which cards they’re dealt.

The key is to be selective when it comes to your starting hands in particular. Yes, a large part of poker revolves around luck, and every hand has the potential to win, but it’s also true that some hands have a higher chance of paying out than others. Learn how to manage risk, and you’ll likely lose less money as a result. It’s also important to learn when to muck or fold your cards. This is actually a crucial aspect of being a better poker player, as it manages risk.

As for bluffing, it doesn’t play nearly as big of a role in poker as most people have been led to believe by movies and TV shows. In fact, most poker pros claim that bluffing around 20% of the time or less can be considered the “sweet spot” in most games. So, be sure to work on your “poker face,” but know that it shouldn’t be the be-all and end-all of your strategy. This is even more important for online poker, where you’ll do even less bluffing.

Don’t Only Take Your Own Cards Into Account

It’s important to evaluate your chances of winning based on your starting hand and your hand every round thereafter, but what most beginners don’t realize is that it’s just as crucial to think about your competitors’ cards when deciding whether to fold or play on.

For example, you might feel good about holding a flush, but then you see that your main competitor has gone “all in” and looks confident. You recheck the other cards on the felt and notice there are four cards of the same rank present. Could your opponent be holding four-of-a-kind, which would ultimately beat your flush? Always remember that just because you have a good hand doesn’t necessarily mean that you have the best hand at the poker table. Play at a casino online, and your experience will start to pay off. Once you’re feeling confident with the basics, you need to start learning poker hand ranges, which will assist in identifying what cards your opposition has.

Your Position at the Table Matters

Your position at the table has a significant influence on your chances of landing a win when playing both online and in-person poker. This is especially true when playing Texas hold’em. 

The best position is when you’re last in line to make a decision concerning your hand. This position is called being “on the button.” When you’re “on the button,” you have the privilege of seeing what the other players choose to do first, giving you some insight into who might be holding which cards.

Create a Poker Budget

Ace playing cards on poker chips.

When you start out, it’s tempting to carry on playing despite any big losses, especially when you feel like you’re just starting to get the hang of things. But this can lead to you spending more than you can afford to. As such, it’s a good idea to start playing poker online for free or taking part in friendly games with friends while you’re still learning the rules, and only move on to playing poker for real money when you’re starting to feel confident in your abilities.

Following this switch, take a close look at your finances and calculate how much you can safely set aside for gambling. In fact, this is excellent advice when playing any casino table games. Be strict about sticking to your budget and, along with poker tournament tips like the ones offered above, take the time to research tips for proper bankroll management, too.

Online Poker at Borgata Online

At Borgata Online, you’ll find plenty of ways to work on your poker skills and have fun in your free time. We offer a wide variety of popular poker variants and live poker tournaments in addition to a diverse menu of other gaming go-to’s like online slots, arcade games, keno, and bingo, to name just a few.
If you’re ready to explore Borgata Online, go ahead and register via the convenient mobile portal.