There is an awful lot of data that a site lobby can give to you that many players ignore or choose to ignore. At the end of the day then knowledge is power so to speak and there is a multitude of things to be gleaned from a lobby screen. Firstly knowing how many tables your opponents are active on is a good indicator of how aggressive they are and also how good they are. A player that was active on say seven tables is far more likely to be tight-aggressive than someone playing on only one or two.
It is very difficult for players to be loose-aggressive on an awful lot of tables and while playing seven tables isn’t any proof of ability, it at least tells you that this player is confident enough about their game to play that many tables. Another vital piece of data that we can get from the site lobby is the stack size. In games like no limit Texas hold’em then this is usually a big fat tell. A strong player will want to maximize their earning potential and if they play a deep stack well then they will always have that topped up.
So if you see someone sitting on a table with say 78bb then this is neither a full buy-in nor someone playing a short stack. In nearly all cases then this is a player that is weak and it will pay you to be on their table. So what other vital data can we glean from the lobby screen the next time that we play online? Well, the average number of players seeing the flop is a vital statistic as well because this not only tells us how our average opponents are playing but it also helps us to devise a strategy to beat them.
For example, if only 20% of your opponents are seeing the flop in a ten-handed cash game then this is a serious indication that your opponents are playing tight-aggressive. This means that when they choose to stack off then we should pay these betting actions a lot of respect and not expect them to be bluffing. If only 20% of players are seeing the flop on average then this statistic has a big impact on other vital areas of our game. For example, the level of implied odds falls alarmingly when very few players are seeing the flop. No longer can we call raises with hands like pocket pairs or suited connectors looking to hit our hand and receive a big payoff. Also limping in with these very same hands is also no longer a good play.
So we can see that there is an awful lot of game data that we can glean from the screen that is presented to us for free by the poker site simply by viewing the lobby screen. This is data that we definitely need to use and if we can use it to our best advantage then this can make all the difference between making money and not making money in some instances. At the end of the day then information is power but the best information in terms of value is often the information that didn’t cost you anything to obtain it except a little time and effort.