If you’re in the United States and looking to play poker online, you have plenty of options. Most of the major poker sites are licensed and regulated by state gaming commissions which ensure that games are fair and that player accounts and data are protected. Players should avoid sites that operate without such oversight as they may not process secure transactions, have shoddy software or be prone to shutting down abruptly.

Once you’ve signed up for an account at a legal poker site, you can start playing for real money. There are usually several deposit options available including credit cards, debit cards and prepaid cards. In the US, you can also use e-wallets or bank transfers to get your cash on and off the site quickly. Withdrawals are similarly fast and easy to accomplish compared to the days when people would wait weeks or months for their winnings to appear in their bank account.

Most online poker rooms host a variety of games but Texas Hold’em is by far the most popular. 888poker offers a large selection of Hold’em games at all stakes as well as Omaha and 7 Card Stud. Tournaments, cash games and sit-and-go’s are all available 24/7. They also offer the fast-fold option known as SNAP whereby players that fold are instantly re-seated with a new hand which makes online poker ideal for short work breaks or when you have limited time to play.

The rakebacks offered by top online poker rooms can make a big difference for break-even players and help them move closer to profitability. The best rakebacks are offered at sites that have a large player pool. They also feature advanced stat tracking tools that provide a wealth of information on your play. These tools can reveal your weak spots and weaknesses and allow you to exploit them with bet sizings that are optimized for your game.

If you’re serious about making money at online poker, it pays to spend time on the study of your game. Signing up for one of the many poker training websites and networking with other successful players can give you an edge over the competition. There’s no doubt that poker is a game of skill in the long run and those who invest time in studying their own play will eventually see results on the tables.

Some players wonder if online poker is rigged or not. The truth is that the vast majority of legitimate poker sites utilize random number generators to create their games. These are independently tested and verified to be fair by third parties. It just wouldn’t make sense for a company to cheat its customers, especially when so much money is at stake. If you want to take your skills to the next level, consider signing up for a poker coaching program like Chip Leader Coaching or Upswing Poker and committing to brutally analyze every session. You’ll soon be a better poker player in no time.