The online gambling market is one of the fastest-growing areas of the global gaming industry, with year-on-year growth of players and revenues hovering at over 8%. The popularity of online casinos has skyrocketed in recent years, as platforms offer increasingly varied and sophisticated gaming options in a more accessible way.
One of the most popular forms of online casino gaming is online slots, which makes up the vast majority of games on most platforms. Your average online casino will have dozens if not hundreds of different online slots on offer, ranging from classic fruit machine nostalgia titles to games themed on your favorite film or TV show.
Online slots also offer some of the biggest and best jackpots in the industry, with many of the big progressive slot games giving out seven-figure prizes to the top winners. Whilst online slots aren’t traditionally considered to be a skill-based game in the same way that, say, poker is, it’s not all about pure blind luck.
There are ways to game the system and to up your skills so that you have the best chance possible of striking gold. These are the top online slots tips and tricks that you need to be paying attention to.
1. Do Your Research
The first thing you should know is that not all online casinos are created equal. Choosing the right casinos can be the difference between hitting the jackpot and not getting anything at all. Some casinos have poor reputations within the community for not offering payouts or making it difficult to collect your winnings, so always make sure to read the reviews and community forums to find out whether a casino operator is kosher.
2. Pick the Right Slot
In the same way that all online casinos are different, all slots are different too. Insiders will be quick to tell you that picking a winning slot machine is critical to success, so you’ll want to choose your game wisely. So, what makes a winning slot machine? Naturally, you want ones with a high jackpot and with a high return-to-player, or RTP (more on that later), but you’ll also want to pick a game that runs smoothly and has a strong reputation among players for delivering results.
3. Know Your Bonuses
Why pay money for slots when you can play for free? Almost every online casino in the universe now offers various welcome bonuses and offers that allow new players to play for real money without spending a penny. These typically come in many forms, such as no-deposit bonuses, which give you some credit to spend on the slots; ‘matched-deposit’, where the casino will give you some spending money equivalent to your first deposit; and ‘free spins bonuses’, which are pretty self-explanatory.
4. Don’t Stick to One Casino
Casinos may value your loyalty, but one of the cardinal sins you can make as a slot player is to put all of your eggs in one basket. Different casinos offer different slot games, different bonuses, and different odds of winning, so spreading yourself out is a sure-fire way to increase your chances of success. You can also collect different sign-up bonuses from different casinos so that you can keep playing for free for as long as humanly possible.
5. Practice By Playing for Free
Before you start playing for real money, you should take the time to practice for free. Most online casinos allow you to play all of their slots for free, without wagering or winning anything. It’s an ideal way to get a feel for different slot games and learn how the various ‘paylines’ and ‘wilds’ work. Once you’re more familiar with a slot machine you’ll have a much better chance of hitting the jackpot, so squeeze in some casual gameplay before taking it on for real.
6. It’s All About the RTP
Now back to that all-important RTP, or return-to-player. Basically, this is the rate of return that every slot machine has and which most casinos advertise. It’s an average of how much you can expect to win back over time, based on how the random-number-generator (RNG) is set, as well as several other factors. For example, if a slot game has an RTP of 97%, then the average player wins back $97 for every $100 they bet. The higher the RTP, the better your chances of winning.
7. ‘Loose Slots’ Exist in the Online World
We all know the Vegas stories about ‘loose slots’, which is when people would prowl the casino floors looking for the ‘loser’ machines that pay out more often and that the casino would rather keep hidden. In a sense, this same phenomenon exists in the casino world. Different machines pay out at different rates, it’s just a matter of finding the ‘loose’ ones, which you can do if you’re willing to put in the research.
Now that you have the roadmap to success, it’s time to start playing. Just remember that the most important rule of all is to have fun and to not take the whole thing too seriously.
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