Key requirements for online poker success

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A few days ago a novice online poker player asked me to list what I considered to be my top requirements for success in online poker. I had to think about it for a while but here they are in no particular order.

Emotional control

Online poker tests your emotional state and well-being because of the fact that the margins are so thin and the losing and break even periods can be long. This places a greater requirement on emotional control and discipline and these are needed now more than ever before.

Game Selection

This part of the game is massively underrated but the biggest winners in online poker are the ones that select the best games all the time. Each poker game will have a theoretical earn rate based on your skill level and that of your opposition. It is how you pitch your skill level with that of your opponents that will ultimately determine your earn rate.

Select a style that is different

If you broadly play in the same way as everybody else or at the very least the winning players then you will struggle to gain an edge. You need to find a way of finding an edge that takes you into avenues that your opponents don’t consider to look. Your earn rate will mainly be comprised of how superior your style is to that of your opponents.

Take advantage of rewards and rakeback

These could literally be the difference between success and failure for many people. If you could for example get your hands on an extra $150 per month in reward points converted to cash and you were a break even player then you are suddenly making $150/month and therefore showing a yearly profit of $1800. Far too many people fail to take money what is rightfully theirs and they ultimately pay the price.

Be disciplined

It is very easy to play good poker when things are going well but the best and most consistent winners perform at their best when things are going badly or indifferently, to do this requires discipline and when things are going really badly then it requires discipline of the highest order.

Learn how to multi-table

In online poker then to make the game pay for reasonable amounts of money then you need to learn how to multi-table and spread your action. Because the online margins in cash games are so thin then multi-tabling is the only way to create a good hourly rate. If you make something mediocre like $5/hour per table then only playing on one table would never leave you in a position to be able to play the game for a living. However if you could replicate that on six tables at once then suddenly $5/hour becomes $30/hour which is a completely different story.

These areas if addressed properly are what I and many other online professionals consider being the most important areas in online poker success.