Today, we're going to learn about how to win online slots games. No doubt, you have combed the literature on the Internet in search of winning slots tips. 99% of the articles you read simply rehash the same gobbledygook. Unfortunately, there is very little useful information to be gleaned from any of those tips that you read. At best, it's a theoretical mishmash of interesting ideas with little practical application. Nonetheless, the theory is important since it explains the inner-mechanics of slot machine games. Our approach is very different. We want to provide the theory, in addition to practical ways to actually help you win slot machine games.

From the get go, it's really important to stress that slots games favour the house. There's no two ways about. If the house edge was zero, there would be no advantage for online casinos and land-based casinos. As it turns out, every single online casino game – bar none – favours the house. That doesn't mean that there is no advantage to be had by savvy players. If we think of slots games on a continuum, from low probability payout slots to high probability payout slots, it becomes easier to focus on winning slots tips. Our expose begins with an explanation of how to differentiate between low-probability payout slots and high-probability payouts slots.

Tips for Winning Online Slots #1 – Know Your RTPs

Every single slot machine game has its own RTP. The RTP is the Return to Player percentage. This is preprogrammed by the slot machine manufacturer and the online casino in question. In fact, slots manufacturers offer online casinos several different RTPs. For example, a game like ABC video slot may be offered by the slot machine manufacturer to an online casino with varying RTPs. Hypothetically, these may be 95%, 95.5%, and 96%.  But what do these numbers mean exactly? Let’s take a look:

  • 95% RTP means that for every 1 GBP wagered on the slot, the theoretical long-term return to player is 0.95 GBP.
  • 95.5% RTP means that for every 1 GBP wagered on the slot, the theoretical long-term return to player is 0.955 GBP.
  • 96% RTP means that for every 1 GBP wagered on the slot, the theoretical long-term return to player is 0.96 GBP.

Most slots players are blissfully unaware that developers present low, medium, and high RTP options to online casinos. Ultimately, it's up to the online casino in question to determine what RTP to set the slot machine game at. There are several online casinos that prefer the highest possible payback for their players, to entice them into the gaming arena. There is no easy answer to the question of which online casinos offer the highest RTPs on specific slots games.

For interest’s sake, we have provided the average RTPs for several states in the US. This is for illustrative purposes. It's really important to select the highest possible RTP if you're looking to increase your chances of winning online slots games. Below are 5 US states with their average RTP on slots games:

  • Florida – The Sunshine State – 92.46% average RTP
  • Mississippi – The Magnolia State – 92.77% average RTP
  • Colorado – The Centennial State – 92.84% average RTP
  • Nevada – The Silver State – 93.54% average RTP
  • New York – The Empire State – 93.75% average RTP

Average RTPs are just that – they don't tell you about the high-paying RTPs or the low-paying RTPs. However overall, you would be much better off playing online slot machine games in New York state than you would be in Florida state. Unsurprisingly, the lowest-paying RTPs are substantially less than those listed above. Let's take a look at states with the lowest RTPs on slots games:

  • Maine – The Pine Tree State - 90.68% average RTP
  • Missouri – The Show-Me State – 90.64% average RTP
  • Ohio – The Buckeye State – 90.34% average RTP
  • Pennsylvania - The Keystone State – 90.16% average RTP
  • West Virginia – The Mountain State – 89.72% average for RTP

This presents an altogether different perspective of how important RTPs are when determining which slot machine games to play. Can you imagine going to West Virginia and playing online slots games where the average RTP is 89.72%? To put things into perspective, a $100 slots budget is expected to pay back $89.72 over the long term. Compare this to New York state where the average RTP is 93.75%. This means you can expect to win back $93.75 on every $100 wagered over the long term. Those percentages mean the world of difference to slots players, and it's important to bear them in mind.

Tips for Winning Online Slots #2 – Pick High RTP Slot Machine Games

Slot payout percentages are really important. We can't stress this enough. When you are looking for winning slots tips, it's important to cut through all the noise and focus on the facts. Since there is very little you can do to influence the outcome of a slot machine game, it pays to pick the right slot machine game upfront. Think about this for a moment. Once you are actually seated at a land-based slot machine game, or actively playing an online slot machine game, there is precious little you can do to affect the outcome. All the strategising takes place during the slots selection process. That's where we focus our attention when we present you with tips for winning online slots games.

It's not rocket science; it’s fact. Slot machine payout numbers can be trusted – they are independently tested and verified for accuracy, credibility, and fairness. Third-party testing agencies such as iTech Labs, eCOGRA, and TST (Technical Systems Testing) verify the authenticity of RTPs, RNGs, and the attendant percentages. We should digress for a moment to explain what we mean by long-term expected percentages. When auditing agencies evaluate the authenticity of RTPs, this is done over millions of outcomes. It's not only slot machine games that are associated with RTPs; it's card games, table games, dice games, instant win games, et al.

Since most of us will never spin 1 million+ times on slots in any given session, we invariably fall into a category of play known as the short-term. In the short term, the RTPs do not apply. What happens with 50 spins, 100 spins, or 1,000 spins is independent of what the RTP averages state. You can win a jackpot, lose your entire bankroll, break even, come out ahead, come out behind, or any other number of possibilities in the short term. In the long term, you will tend towards the RTP figure, although this is still a theoretical concept.

Top RTP Slots Games 

It's important to have yardsticks for comparing RTPs with slot games. To make it easier for you, we have designated low RTP percentages, medium-range RTP percentages, and high RTP percentages.

  • Low RTPs – under 95%
  • Medium-range RTPs – 95% – 98%
  • High RTPs – 98%+

The RTPs listed above do not say anything about the quality of the online slot machine game, the features available to players, or the popularity of the game in question. Indeed, some of the best slots ever created have low RTPs, by dint of their in-game features, functions, and elements. 

  • Ugga Bugga Slot by Playtech – RTP of 99.07%
  • Rainbow Riches Pick n Mix by Barcrest – RTP of 98%
  • Mega Joker by NetEnt – RTP of 99%
  • Ooh Aah Dracula by Barcrest – RTP of 99%
  • Kings of Chicago by NetEnt – RTP of 99%
  • Monopoly Big Event by Barcrest – RTP of 99%
  • 1429 Uncharted Seas by Thunderkick – RTP of 98.6%
  • Jackpot 6000 by NetEnt – RTP of 98.86%
  • The Catfather by Pragmatic Play – RTP of 98.10%
  • Jokerizer by Yggdrasil – RTP of 98%
  • Blood Suckers by NetEnt – RTP of 98%

Naturally, there are many other slot machine games with RTPs between 98% and 99.07% +. It is definitely worth your while doing a little research into the types of slot machine games you are interested in playing and their attendant RTPs. Remember, you can win a life-changing jackpot on any big money slot machine game. It doesn't have to have an RTP of 99.07% like Ugga Bugga slot by Playtech. 

Would you believe that Mega Moolah slot – the progressive jackpot slot responsible for some of the biggest payouts ever recorded in the online casino arena only has an RTP of 88.12%? This Microgaming-powered online casino game is in the Guinness Book Of Records for the biggest online slot machine win. On October 6, 2015, John Heywood of the UK scooped up a life changing €17,879,645 on Mega Moolah – even with a low RTP.

Your next question is invariably list: Where do I play high RTP slot machine games?

Your best bet is a multivendor online casino which features slot machine games from many of the world's premier slots providers. If you stick with a single vendor, you'll be limited in terms of availability. Just like investments, you want a diversified portfolio of online slot machine providers. Then, you can pick and choose at your leisure. 

Tips for Winning Online Slots #3 – Managing Your Slots Budget

Bankroll management is central to your success in slots gaming. It's so easy to get swept up in the excitement of online slots games that you may forget that you’re playing within a budget. That's a dangerous predicament to find yourself in. The first order of business is to establish a gaming budget. Everyone is different. You may have a sizeable bankroll, or a modest bankroll. Either way, a budget is required. Let's assume you have a gaming budget of £500. This represents the disposable income you are prepared to lose playing online casino games. Once you're comfortable with your budget, you can get started:

  • Your slots sessions should be divided into time-limited sessions of play. Let's assume you have a £500 budget and you would like to play £1 slot games. That means you can play at least 500 spins before your budget is exhausted. During the course of your slot session, you will invariably win money and lose money. Overall, you will get to spin 500+ times because your winnings will allow you to play for longer. If you spin an average of 10 times per minute, that's 10 x 60 per hour. That's your budget exhausted. You could break your slot session up into 20 minute sessions and rest for 40 minutes after every session. That way you get to play over 3 hours. 
  • Boost your available bankroll with a slots bonus from your chosen online casino. There are many different types of slots bonus offers available at online casinos. These include no deposit bonuses, match deposit bonuses, and free spins offers. Online casino bonuses are without doubt the best way to stretch your budget and allow for the possibility of winning money over time. A caveat is in order: Nobody is saying that more slots play will result in bigger winnings. What we are saying is that every spin of a slot machine game has the potential for a payout. 

Tips for Winning Online Slots #4 – Avoid Penny Slots Games

Everybody loves penny slots, and why not? These games can be played for as little as 1 penny per coin. Think about that for a second. The minimum coin denomination in a penny slot game is 1 penny. Unfortunately, that doesn't tell the whole story. We know for a fact that penny slots games don't cost a penny per spin. You will be required to wager substantially more than that on every spin of a penny slots game. Why? Because a certain number of coins per line, and lines are required for every spin. You may be required to wager 5 coins per line with 20 lines in play. Or, you may be required to wager 1 penny per line with 100 lines in play. Either way, the cost of penny slots games is never one penny.

But here's the clincher: Penny slots are among a group of slots variants that have notoriously low RTPs. Fancy that? Penny slots – the most love slots games of all – offer a huge advantage to the house and very little advantage to the player. If you enjoy playing penny slots, know this: these are low variance slots. That means that you can expect small winnings on a regular basis. These incremental wins are minimal, but just enough to keep you playing and feeding more money into the slot machine game. The RTPs are typically in low range, well under 95%. They're fun to play, but certainly not recommended for folks wanting to win online slots games.

Tips for Winning Online Slots #4 – Avoid Progressive Jackpot Slots

This ties in with our recommendation regarding Mega Moolah slot and others like it. You may be wondering why all the feature-rich online slots with Wilds, Scatters, Bonus Rounds, Pick’em features, collapsing reels, expanding reels, Mini, Minor, Major, Grand jackpots, and the like are notoriously poor payers? A slot machine game can only pay substantial amounts of money if it is bringing in substantial amounts of money, and it is difficult for players to win that money. Slots developers intentionally limit the probability of winning life changing jackpots to extremely improbable odds. It's like the lottery – everybody wants to play because the payout is so huge. Unfortunately, only a fraction of a percentage of players ever wins a substantial payout on the lottery. That's how progressive jackpot slots work too.

As you might expect, the RTPs of progressive jackpot slots are low. Mega Moolah is a case in point. In the short term, anyone can win a life changing jackpot on a progressive slot machine game; it's just highly unlikely that it's going to happen to you. We could probably count on our fingers and toes all the big money winners in the last five years. Compare that to the thousands, hundreds of thousands, or millions of players who play these games. You're better off playing non-progressive jackpot slots games. They offer just as much fun, with higher RTPs too. 

Tips for Winning Online Slots #5 – How to Actually Find the RTPs of Slots Games

We listed 10+ online slot games with high RTPs, but each slot machine developer (Playtech, Microgaming, Authentic Gaming, NetEnt, Yggdrasil, Play ‘N GO, Skillzzgaming, Section8 Studio, and scores of others) actually creates dozens, or hundreds of online slot games. There has to be a way for you – the player to check the RTP of the slot gaming question. And there is! You can navigate to any slot machine game you want to play in demo mode, or real money mode and click on the ‘Rules’ or ‘Paytable’ or ‘Info’ button to access the payout information. 

Sometimes, you will find the RTP at the end of the rules, along with the number of winning combinations that are possible in the game. Sometimes, you will find the RTP listed in the extended game description written up by the online casino. If you can't find the RTP on the game, you can certainly perform a quick search on Google, Yahoo, Bing, Safari or any other search engine for reliable information. We strongly recommend that you go to the software developer’s website such as NetEnt, Microgaming, or Playtech and search for the game there. You will find accurate data pertaining to RTPs.

We have listed 5 of the most important tips for winning online slots games you will see anywhere on the Internet. Some of these tips require you to do a little research, and that's okay. It'll pay off in the end. In summary, we recommend choosing slot machine games with high RTPs. The RTPs do not guarantee that you will lose a certain amount; they guarantee that the long-term return to player will be more favourable to you. Always pick a high RTP slot if you have any intention of enjoying several sessions of play on slots games with a modest or substantial budget. And if possible, practice in demo mode before you play for real.