SNG’s are still profitable

A few years ago I actually played SNG’s seriously as a change to my usual limit hold’em ring games. I played almost a thousand tournaments in a very short space of time. The games were far softer back then but these days the players in SNG’s have become very strong. Back then you could get an excellent earn rate at levels up to $200 games by having a very simple but effective strategy of playing tight to start and then loosening up towards the middle stages. If you added to that keeping notes and game selection then you could make a decent 10% ROI in these tournaments and playing no more than a couple of them per hour could get you an earn rate of $40/hour.

But just like everything else in online poker, the situation changed as players evolved and grew up and became far more educated. This meant that games became far tougher and value became difficult to find. In about 2007 then it became increasingly clear that ICM (Independent Chip Model) was becoming critical to success in SNG’s. The higher levels at $200 became super tough to beat and this gradually filtered down the lower levels and now even the $20 and $30 levels are very tough.

However the SNG’s at levels up to $10 are still very profitable for players who follow simple strategies. This is simply because at levels up to $10 then the games are full of too many recreational players. This is no different than any other form of poker at the lower levels where the people at the bottom end are mainly playing recreationally. At the end of the day, poker sites spend vast amounts of money advertising their respective companies. The effect of this is that there are millions of players coming into online poker every year and these people are coming in at the bottom end.

There will always be a constant process of young people who are being born, then leaving school and having the financial capability to then buy into online poker sites to play poker. This process will likely never stop and will be ongoing. So there will always be value at the bottom end of the spectrum. In fact there is a name for players who deliberately chase these players and they are called “bottom feeders”. This is a term for poker players who are actually quite skilled who are happy to select the easy pickings of the low stakes games when they in fact have the technical skills to play higher up.

SNG’s are suited to people who are not technical in nature and prefer poker games that can be approached with solid easy strategies. This allows players to play many of them simultaneously and this is their greatest attribute. The fact of the matter is though that a dedicated player can still make money playing low stakes SNG’s and that is still a fact going into 2011.

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