Do Online Poker Players Have Tells?

These days, many poker players make their beginning in online poker. Online casino games are a multibillion dollar industry. Online poker in particular saw a huge increase in popularity when revenue rose from $82.7 million in 2001 to $2.4 billion in 2005, and it has only continued to grow from there. Many people are apprehensive about online poker because they think that it loses a lot of the fun that a live game has, but online poker involves just as much strategy, mind games, and tells as physical games. But the popularity of online poker speaks for itself.

What are Tells?

Tell” is simply the term for a player’s behavior in a poker game. A tell is a change in a player’s expression or conversation which give their opponent or opponents clues about their current hand. Obviously more experienced players work to stifle these tells and perfect their poker faces, but any player can look for tells when playing a live game of poker and even when playing online.

Common tells to look for include:

  • A change in facial expression,
  • How a player places their chips or if they play with them,
  • Changes in voice (tone, volume, how much they’re talking),
  • Fidgeting,
  • Making eye contact or avoiding it,
  • Changes in breathing patterns

Some tells are pretty universal, but specific players might have their own unique tells– something that they do repeatedly whenever their cards are good or bad. These tells can be noticed after playing against one opponent for a while or if they build up a reputation.

A lot of these tells might seem like they only apply to live poker games. It’s hard to catch onto a tell like avoiding eye contact or looking down at chips when the game is being played online and opponents can’t see each other. But online poker has its own tells to look out for. How slowly or how quickly a player plays their turn, whether they are talking or chatting with other players, and of course their bets will all indicate what they have in their hands and if they could be bluffing.

Becoming an Online Poker Champion

When a player wants to try their hand at online poker, they shouldn’t be concerned about their own tells or the other players’ right away. Get a hang of the game on free online poker sites like first. Of course online games are very different from physical poker games, so players who are new to online casino games might need some time to get acclimated. Too many players make the mistake of taking on opponents that are far above their own skill too early. Start out easy and build up skills before adding bluffing to the mix. Before long, players will learn the ins and outs of online poker and be able to draw conclusions about their opponents based on digital tells.

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