Methods for calculating rake and rakeback

This article was posted on October 16, 2008

Signing up for any rakeback deal carries huge advantages for all players, not just for those who play high-stakes or win all the time. As you probably know, poker rooms make their money by raking off a small percentage of each pot that is won on their site. By signing up for a rakeback deal, you make sure that the room pays a set percentage of that rake back (the standard rakeback % is around 30%, but you can get much more than that).

Well then, if a poker room rakes money off each pot, it means that it is the winner who pays the rake, and consequently, it is he who receives the bulk of the rakeback too, right? Not by a longshot. You see, the pot is a stand-alone entity at the table. It doesn't belong to anyone: it is kind of like an additional player. At the end of the hand, the poker room rakes the pot when it doesn't yet belong to the winner and only then it awards it. Before the winner adds the pot to his stack the pot basically belongs to the entire table, especially to those players who contributed money to building it. No, it is not the winner who gets all the credit for the rake contribution, and it is not him who gets all the rakeback either. The rake and the rakeback belongs to all those who contributed to the pot, in a proportional manner if you want to be entirely fair about it.

Poker rooms have methods for tracking rake contribution, and unfortunately (or fortunately for some players) not all these methods are accurate. One way that poker rooms calculate contributed rake is through the dealt rake method. In this setup, the rake which is taken off the pot at the end of a hand is equally distributed among all those players who were dealt in. It doesn't matter if you didn't even call the BB before folding: you will be allotted rake contribution. Only those who sit out or for whatever reason do not get cards miss the juice so to speak. This method offers clear advantages for tight passive rocks who shall be accumulating rake contribution and rakeback basically doing nothing and keeping their money out of harm's way. They'll be generating an income on the back of those who actually feed the pot with their contributions.

If you're a rock, such tables are a blessing for you. If you're a loose-aggressive maniac: not so much. Other poker rooms use the average contributed rake method. This one's much more accurate, though it's not quite the real deal either. In poker rooms which use this method, the rake taken off the pot is distributed equally among those who actively contributed to the pot. If you keep on folding, and avoid putting money into the pot, you will not be allotted rake contribution, and therefore you will not be eligible for much rake back either.

The third rake calculation method is the weighted-contributed rake. This one is 100% accurate as only active players are allotted rake contribution and individual contributions are determined in a direct proportion with the amount of money players have contributed to the pot. If you stuff the pot more than the next guy, you generate more rake and you make more rakeback too. With all the above in mind, it is important that you seek out such apparently insignificant details about the rakeback deal you're about to sign up for. Depending on your playing style, some rakeback deals can be much more lucrative then others. features such detailed information on all the rakeback deals on offer. Check out our deals page and sign up for the deal which best suits you now.

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