Some players believe that a strong game is all that is required to lead them to success, while this may be the main factor it is not completely true. Having a well devised bankroll system is an enormous benefit to players that want to make money playing online poker.
Deciding how much to invest in poker can be a key decision in your poker career. First, you need to ensure that you have enough money for all your bills and crucial expenses, and only use what you have left for your bankroll. You should always look to start with a bankroll in excess of $400.
Sitting down and deciding on what you want to play (tournaments, SNGs or MTTs), and how much money you have to do this is essential. If you want to play No Limit Texas Holdem, then your bankroll is managed differently to a limit Omaha poker player. Below is a guide for no limit Texas Holdem, played at 9 or 10 seat tables.
For cash games ensure you always have 20 X the maximum buyin for the level, for example, if you have a $1000 bankroll, your limit should be $0.25 - $0.50 as the maximum buyin is $50 (20 X $50 = $1000). When playing in SNGs you should only lay out 2-4% of your stake per game. Thus, a $1000 bankroll can play $20-$40 SNGs, including the rake. For MTT players a $1000 bankroll should only outlay 1% per game; therefore, a MTT player should not lay out more than $10 per game. This is an exceptionally basic but solid plan that every single player can follow to ensure they are always playing 'within their limits'.
As time progresses, your play should get better. If you are turning a positive ROI (return on investment), then you should start to increase your stakes. If this is the case, then make sure you always follow the limits above. However, you do need to think about the increase in playing standard, as the general rule is higher stakes have better players. Therefore, you need to weigh up your desire to move up, against how proficient you think your game has become. This rule should also be followed for players that are losing money. In Texas Holdem, Omaha Hi and all other variations of the game, bankroll management can be the element that sets you apart from other players. Bankroll management allows you not to play poorly, or experience swings, and not come out the other side with your bankroll in tatters, and this is the main reason why every player should follow a bankroll system.