Rakeback is still a fairly unknown trend used by online poker sites to encourage player loyalty and increased patronage. Rakeback began to surface around 2004 when online casinos or their affiliates began to return part of the rake back to its players as part of an incentive program. One of the most popular rakeback poker rooms was Full Tilt Poker, till it’s demise earlier this year due to the US crackdown on online gambling. It is also important to note that not all poker room are able to offer rakeback. Around 2008 the Ongame poker network denied their licensed poker rooms to offer rakeback altogether, and pressured them to have their affiliates stop using the name rakeback in conjunction with any Ongame poker room. To combat this animosity towards rakeback many poker rooms just renamed rakeback to value back, reward back or cash back, or just rolled it into an existing loyalty program. But poker players will always call it rakeback regardless what gambling executives come up with to try to stop it.
What is a Rake?
In a cash game, the poker room takes a percentage of the pot for each hand dealt. This commission is called a rake. Rake varies from poker room to poker room and is typically around 5 percent of the pot. The rake is how online poker rooms make their income.
Types of Rakeback
Rakeback offers players a win-win scenario. For players, rakeback is a great way to get something back whatever the outcome of the game; whether they win or lose a hand. For poker room operators it keeps players coming back for more, and for affiliates it offers a great marketing channel.
So, how is rake calculated?
Rakeback is calculated using the methods; Dealt, Flat and Contributed (Average, Weighted).
Flat Rakeback – This system awards a certain percentage to a player regardless of how much they play. With this type there is no minimum limit.
Dealt Rakeback – This system is easier to calculate compared to the contributed rakeback. Unfortunately, few poker rooms offer dealt rakeback. This system works by dividing the rake by the number of players dealt in the hand. This ensures that each player gets an equal amount of the monthly generated rake (MGR).
Contributed Rakeback – This system is the most commonly used rakeback calculation amongst poker rooms. This method is further sub-divided into 2 types — average contributed method and weighted contributed method.
Average Contributed Rakeback – This works by dividing the rake amount taken out of the pot between players who contributed to the pot. Players who folded before the flop (when the first 3 cards are dealt face up) are not entitled to receive rakeback.
Weighted Contributed Rakeback – The weighed contributed system is similar to the average contributed system but instead of giving an equal amount to all players that contributed to the pot, this system weights each player’s contribution taking into account the amount they actually contributed to the pot.
Which Rakeback Program to Choose?
Depending on the type of player you are some rakeback systems favor a specific playing style. For less aggressive players who fold before a flop, the Dealt Rakeback system is ideal; while loose aggressive style players will favour the Contributed Rakeback style.
Naturally your goal is to win and get rakeback at the same time. Taking advantage of the offers will help achieve just that, and by joining us you’ll start earning as soon as you play your first hand. There are also plenty of freerolls that poker players can use to gain a favourable position in poker cash games and tournaments.