Poker is not only a fun source of entertainment, but also a gain of strategy and skill. Playing poker is all about the thrill of beating your opponents and potentially winning money.
Over the last decade, the global online poker market has grown at a fast rate and there are now millions of players all around the world that enjoy the game. In such a lucrative market, it is no surprise that so many online poker operators have come onto the scene and as a consequence of this it is a very competitive industry.
With so many poker sites online, it can be difficult for users to decide on which website is best for them to try. Gambling operators compete with one another for customers in many ways, such as offering generous bonuses and promotions, different transaction methods and by regularly updating their selection of games.
Let’s break down the different things that need to be considered when choosing a poker website and explore what the many different options are when playing the game online:
Choice of games
Firstly, you should take a look at the range of games that each website offers. What site appeals to you will depend on your individual tastes, do you prefer playing lots of different poker variants or do you have a favourite type that you are happy to play again and again?
From Texas Hold’em and Omaha to Chinese poker and Follow the Queen, there are a whole host of games to consider. Also, you should always check what tournaments the website has and how you can go about entering them if you so wish to.
Look out for websites that offer live poker games too if that is something that interests you.
While some websites specialise in online poker only, there are many casinos that have all sorts of games, such as blackjack, slots, roulette, and baccarat to name a few. So, if you enjoy lots of different casino games, these are likely to be a convenience option for you.
The easiest way to find out what games the top online poker and casino sites offer is through an affiliate site. These sites list all the options in one place with rating and descriptions of what each operator has to offer.
Of course, it is not just about the number of games a website has to offer, the quality of these games is also very important. Taking a close look at reviews and asking friends and forums for recommendations will help you to get a better idea of which poker site is right for you.
Bonuses and promotions
These days pretty much every online poker site will have some sort of sign-up bonus or offer in order to entice new players. As they compete with so many other operators, you will usually find that these offers are quite generous.
Some websites even have a no deposit bonus option for new players, by using this you can create an account on the site and start playing without having to put down any of your own cash, a very appealing option for those who are unsure of which sites to pick.
When utilizing these sign-up bonuses, one thing you must ensure that you look into is the rules and wagering requirements that come with them. These will impact what games you can play and the amount you will need to play before cashing out any winnings.
Offers are not only reserved for new players, but many poker sites also have some form of loyalty programme for returning customers. Generally, it costs a site a lot more to attract new users than it does to keep their current ones coming back.
One of the most important considerations you must make when playing online poker games is whether the site is secure. There are a number of safety measures that you need to pay attention to.
Firstly, ensure that the website has the correct licence for whatever jurisdiction it is operating in, for example in the UK websites will have a licence from the UK Gambling Commission. The site will have a licence number that you can cross reference check on the licensers site.
Any online poker website you play on should have SSL encryption. If the site has a valid SSL, you will see a padlock in the address bar in your browser.
You should also check out what contact options are available to customers. All legitimate sites will display their contact details in easy-to-find locations, options are likely to include webforms, social media accounts, a phone number, and an email address.
Some poker websites and mobile apps will even have a live chat feature that allows you to connect with a customer service representative instantly to discuss any queries.
Lastly, when choosing the right poker site for you, you should consider how you prefer to make and receive payments and whether each site allows that option. One of the most popular methods is credit or debit card, other options include third parties like PayPal or Skrill or through bank transfers.
There is now a growing number of online poker sites that allow users to make transactions through cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin or Ethereum. A small number of sites operate exclusively through cryptocurrency as there has been a small growth in demand for this option.
Online poker is a great way to have fun and enjoy your free time, through making the above considerations, you are sure to find the right websites for you.