Home » Online Poker Tells You Should Know To Maximize Your Wins

Online Poker Tells You Should Know To Maximize Your Wins

Home » Online Poker Tells You Should Know To Maximize Your Wins

Online Poker Tells You Should Know To Maximize Your Wins

A man playing poker with his friend reveals his hole cards. His hole cards are a pair of aces.

Playing poker is not only about playing the best hands, being able to calculate your hand equity and implied odds or knowing how to tell if someone is bluffing in online poker games. It is also about cultivating the ability to read other players. In a broader context, this would mean learning about common poker tells and being able to recognize a pattern in the play of your opponents.

The rise in popularity of online poker has changed the dynamics. Players used to only rely on physical tells, like nervous twitches or facial expressions, to put their opponent on a certain range of hands, but in the absence of this online, you would have to look elsewhere for information that will stand you in good stead before you decide to check, call, bet, raise or shove. There are, however, some crossover tells that survive the migration from screen to table. Take a look at a few online poker tells that will have you on the road to building a new skill and gaining a bit of an edge in your gameplay.

A Word on Interpreting Online Cues

Assuming you know how to identify and exploit the four basic types of poker players, you would know that different types of players send out different signals. So, when considering a possible tell or a cue, it is key to look at it in terms of the broader context. You should be aware of the player’s overall style, tendencies and past actions to accurately assess the meaning of a tell. 

A single tell should be evaluated in conjunction with other available information, like the poker patterns of that player, to paint a more accurate picture. It will also help to know some basic tells that most probably indicate weak hands. Basically, you have to look at patterns and clusters of behavior instead of relying solely on individual tells.

Spotting Online Poker Tells

Three poker players in dark suits looking at another poker player during a game.

In poker games online, whether in cash games or in poker tournaments, spotting tells comes down to two things: Timing of play and betting patterns.

In each of the online poker timing tells outlined below, you would have to keep in mind also whether or not the player is on multiple tables. The reason for the speed at which they make their decisions might simply be that they are concentrating on a different hand at a different table.

You should be aware of changes in the speed of play of your opponents. Sudden shifts in tempo, like taking longer before making a decision and then betting or making a big raise, often indicate a strong hand. This might be because the bettor wants you to think that they have a weak hand. This is a classic case of playing weak but actually holding a strong hand. It might be wise to fold.

If a player is taking a long time to make a move and then checks, it usually indicates a weak hand and a player who wants you to believe that they have a strong hand. A raise at this point would be a good tactic to employ.

Another timing tell is acting faster than usual. An immediate check will often signal a weak hand. This might indicate that the player has lost interest in the pot and is just waiting for the next card to see if his hand will improve. Better players would use this type of timing in their play to also hide a monster hand. So, once again, always be aware of the type of player you’re up against.

Tell-Tale Poker Patterns

A poker player checks their hole cards. They have two aces.

Analyzing an opponent’s betting patterns is also a fundamental aspect of online poker tells. Bet sizes often indicate a player’s hand strength. Large bets or raises may signify a strong hand, while small bets might indicate a weaker one. Abrupt deviations from a player’s established pattern can reveal bluffs or adjustments to a changed hand strength, like not making the straight or the flush or the possibility of a stronger pair on the turn or river.

Some betting plays are so regular they even have names like the Flop Donk Bet. This is where less skillful players will bet into your hand on the flop after you’ve raised preflop. These players most probably have a mediocre hand at best, so this is an attempt at throwing you off. But advanced players know this tactic and might use it against you with their nut hands.

You can also take note of a player’s use of auto-play functions and their chat box activity. Frequent or immediate auto-checks or auto-calls may imply a lack of interest or a weak hand, while auto-bets or auto-raises can mean a strong hand. Players who never chat might be concentrating or even multi-tasking, with little interest in the game. Emotional outbursts, complaints or comments about the hand are further possible clues about the player’s state of mind.

By being mindful of changes in speed of play, betting patterns, auto-play functions and chat box activity, you can gain valuable insight into your opponents’ hands and intentions. Always consider the context and the type of player you’re up against to maximize the effectiveness of your strategy.

Play Poker Online at BetMGM

Keen to exploit your opponents’ online poker tells? Register at BetMGM and gain access to online poker tables, with cash games, sit-and-goes or poker tournaments at multiple buy-ins suited to your preference. The mobile app lets you play anywhere, at any time and on any device. Sharpen your skills, embrace the digital tells and unlock a whole new level of success in the online poker arena.

Increase your win rate with online poker tells. Read on to learn about different types of tells you get, how to spot them and how to act on the information.