Things you should look for in a rakeback deal
If you’re being stuck in a rut and unable to get your fledgling bankroll off the ground, a good rakeback deal can – in most instances – give you the boost you need. It’ll help you recover money on every single hand you play in an online poker room, and it will thus provide a steady trickle of revenue on top of the winnings you muster.

To properly understand the impact rakeback will have on your poker finances, you first need to grasp a few basic concepts regarding the poker rake. The rake is taken on every hand you play, and no, it is not paid by the winner of each particular hand only. The pot is a separate entity at the table until it is eventually awarded to the winner. Each and every one of the players who contribute money to the pot will have an equity in it. When the hand concludes and the winner is decided, the pot is first raked by the room and only then it is awarded to the winner, therefore, it is definitely not the winner who pays the rake.

The rake is paid by all those with equity in the pot, that is, by all those who put money into it. Win or lose, if you post money either through one of the blinds or through subsequent betting, you will be paying rake yourself.

This is bad news for those who play without poker rakeback, for those who know what it is though and how they can take advantage of it, it’s just a fact of life.

The poker room always calculates players’ MGRs (the amount of rake they help the room acquire) for tracking purposes. Players with outstanding MGRs are often contacted by poker rooms to make sure they stay loyal, to which end they’re sometimes offered better-than-standard deals on their rake rebate.

The methods poker rooms use to calculate MGR (generated rake) differ from one room to another. As a rakeback player you need to be 100% in the clear about all these different methods, because the rakeback you earn is obviously directly dependent on your MGR.

The dealt rake method awards MGR to all players who are dealt into a hand, regardless of whether or not they get to actively take part in it. This method provides on obvious advantage for tight-passive (aka weak-tight) rookies who will be able to rack up rakeback just by sitting around and preying on the rake generated by the more aggressive advanced players. The latter will basically end up generating rakeback for someone else.

Other poker rooms only award MGR to players who actively take part in hands. Still other operations promote the contributed rake method. The contributed rake calculation determines the amount each player contributes to a raked pot, and the MGR is awarded in direct proportion with the amount of money contributed. This is obviously the fairest of all methods, as it gives each of the players his just deserves. An aggressive player will be credited the entire amount of rake he generates, and so will rocks. Being a rock doesn’t really pay as far as rakeback goes in a poker room which uses the contributed rake method.

Make an honest assessment about which player category you belong to, and make a wise choice when you sign up for rakeback.