One poker topic that is worth taking into consideration before you buy into a game is seating. By having the right types of players either side of you can make a difference to your profits. You may not always be able to choose your seat position at the table, but you can gain an advantage if you can determine the type of players you have either side of you.
Because the action in a game of poker is always clockwise, it will always be coming from your right and you will always have an advantage over players that act before you and any players that act after you will have an advantage over you.
The basics are that a player who acts after another will have a chance to decide how he should play the hand whether to check, bet or fold depending on the previous players actions.
But having the right types of players acting before or after you can work in your favour. You ideally want loose, weak players sitting to your right, you want these players to play a lot of hands for one bet but then fold to a raise, and the type of players you want on your left, to act after you are tight, passive players who will fold when you show aggression.
For an example, you have a hand that is worth playing so you raise, your weak opponent to your left will fold, almost automatically unless they have a monster hand. Now, if the loose player to your right calls one bet and then you make your raise, that player will now fold because although he will often call one bet, he knows his hand will be easily beaten.
So in conclusion, a player to your left who is weak, passive and doesn’t play many hands, will not profit from their advantage over you so often. Having a loose, weak player to your right, that will put money in the pot more often and then fold to your raise, will mean that you profit more often from their loose play.