It’s great to know when to bet and raise, but if you don’t know how much to bet and raise when it’s your turn, you’re going to have a very serious gap in your betting play.
Use this quick and easy guide to determine what to bet the next time you sit down at the No Limit Hold’em table.
Why is this important? Is your bet correct?
Suppose you flop a strong top pair, but there are two cards of the same suit on the table. So…
If you bet too little, you’ll give players with draws and some players with middle pairs the chance to see the turn cheaply , which makes it mathematically correct for them to pay to try and beat you (because they have good pot odds – but if you’re not familiar with Pot Odds (playing flushes and straights) , please don’t worry, but you just saw how bad it is to bet too little). So if you don’t bet enough, you’re just allowing other players to interfere and win the pot for you.
Now, if you bet too much, you are taking a big risk and your opponent will most likely have a better hand than you. Top pair is a good hand on the flop, and a big bet can get rid of the weak hands that give you headaches, but what if another player beats you? Why invest a large amount of money when a smaller bet can achieve the same goal but save money?
As you can imagine, the goal is to hit the “sweet spot” in terms of bet size. Here we would bet too much so that players can mathematically correctly call the draw, but at the same time not bet so much that we would lose a lot of money if we encountered resistance. So let’s get started…
Determine your stakes in No Limit Hold’em.
Let me tell you the basic rules of a good poker betting strategy:
The size of your bet should always be proportional to the size of the pot.
This means that every time you bet, you need to keep the pot size in mind and bet accordingly. That’s all well and good, but it doesn’t tell you how much you should bet, so I’m going to give you a magical rule that you should always follow when betting by size.
If You Have an “If” If you have a strong hand that you want to bet, you should bet 75% to 100% of the pot size.
By following this rule you can always calculate the optimal range of bet sizes so you can always bet on every hand. When you bet between these two numbers, you bet just enough to force your opponent to lose the bet, but not so much that you risk doing damage by one of the other players at the table beating you.
Bet before the flop.
As a rule of thumb, the ideal value is four times the big blind. This allows you to eliminate weaker players and reduce the number of players still on the flop.
If there is a caller before the preflop action, you should add 1 big blind to the 4 big blinds, which is what I recommend. So, if you are playing $1/$2 NL Hold’em and decide to raise preflop, the default raise is $8. However, if there is 1 limper, your bet should be $10. If there are two limpers, you will make $12, and so on….
This is because limpers make the pot bigger, meaning that even if you get a regular cards, your opponents will also become bigger. Make 4X BB -Raise You’ll get a better price entering the hand and seeing the flop. So make sure you make the toughest decisions possible and don’t give them a chance to get into the hand…You don’t want players to flop with marginal hands!
The ideal situation on the flop is to stay left-handed hand after hand, as this allows you to play more profitable poker. A good preflop betting strategy can increase your chances of playing hand after hand.