How to Win at Slots Online

Online slots are games of chance, meaning there is no logic to the outcome of the games.  All slot machines at legal casinos in Canada have an RNG (Random Number Generator) implemented in their mechanics, so no amount of skill can get you closer to hitting a jackpot.

Having said that, there’s no harm in executing strategies to raise the odds of winning. Read on to find out how to improve your potential when it comes to playing online slots.

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Table of Contents

How Do Slot Machines Work?

To play a slot online, all you need to do is set your stake and hit spin. However, there’s a lot more going on in the background. For example, video slots create an atmosphere with their graphics, soundtracks, and animations. Then there are the features, some of which are unique to their software providers. These set online slots apart from land-based ones.

Since the outcome of each spin is down to nothing but pure chance, every player has the same odds of winning, regardless of whether the player is a professional or a beginner. However, it’s good to understand the basics of how slot machines work as this will help you choose the best ones for you.

RTP and Volatility

RTP and volatility are the elements of a given slot machine that tell you how much and how often you can win. Let’s look at them in more detail:

  • RTP: RTP stands for Return to Player, which is exactly that – how much you’ll get back for each $1 you stake. Remember that the house always has the advantage, so you will never find a game with a return of 100%.

Here’s an example: You play a slot online with an RTP of 97.00%. You will receive $0.97 for each $1.00 you stake. This is calculated over time so there is no guarantee.

  • Volatility: The higher the volatility, the lower the hit rate. However, high volatility slots tend to have much larger payouts than low volatility ones. This is because slot machines with low volatility tend to hit much more frequently.


Paylines are the paths symbols need to follow to complete a win. These can be fixed, in which case you’ll find illustrations in the paytable, or random. In the case of the latter, symbols either pay when landing in clusters or on consecutive reels. Always check the paytable to see how to complete wins.

It is important to consider that a $1.00 stake is not a $1.00 stake, as this is spread over the paylines within the game. For example, if you stake $20.00 on an online slot with 10 fixed paylines, you will have placed $2.00 on each line. Therefore, if you win a 5x bet multiplier on one payline, you will win a total of $10.00.

Some online slots have adjustable paylines. These games allow you to increase or reduce the number of paylines you play over, which automatically increases the amount you stake on each payline. Keep in mind that you won’t have any control over the active patterns.

Strategies to Win at Online Slots

Now that you have a better idea of how online slot machines work, it’s time to build some strategies. Here are our favourite ones.

  1. Play Demo Versions

    The best online casinos in Canada offer demo versions of most, if not all, their slot machines. Playing slots in demo mode doesn’t only give you a better idea of what you enjoy most, but it also gets you familiar with how the game works. You’ll understand how the features work, when the free spins or bonus rounds hit, and how to strategize with your stake. Once you’re happy with your findings, switch to real cash.

  2. Be Aware of the Game You Play

    Research slot machines before playing them as although they may seem similar, they are all unique in their own way. You’ll have different graphics, music, RTP percentages, and bet multipliers. You’ll make your experience more entertaining by finding online slots that suit both your budget and your personality.

  3. Choose Jackpot Slots Carefully

    While online slots with millions in the jackpot funds are rather attractive, they don’t hit very often, meaning you’ll be spending a lot more time and money to try and trigger the pot. We suggest sticking to the lower jackpot slots as they tend to hit more frequently. Jackpots tied to Hold and Win or other bonus games are also more likely to trigger.

  4. Familiarise Yourself with the Paytable

    Study the paytable well and understand how the game works. There’s a difference between slot machines with only wilds and those with multipliers, free spins, and giant symbols. Understand how much you can win for each symbol and what that means for your stake. Once you’ve checked out a few slot paytables, choose the game that suits your needs most and enjoy.

  5. Set a Budget

    It’s crucial to set limits, especially if you opt for the autoplay feature. This keeps your gameplay entertaining rather than problematic. Know when to stop and never spend more money than you can afford. If you feel like you cannot control your spending, contact a customer support agent.


How do I win at online slots?

Online slots are games of chance, meaning there is no logic or skill involved. You can increase the odds of winning by opting for games with high RTP percentages, jackpots, and special features such as free spins and bonus rounds.

What is RTP?

RTP, or Return To Player, is the percentage you will get back from every $1.00 you stake. For example, playing an online slot with an RTP of 98.00% will give you $0.98 back from every $1.00 you stake over time.

What is volatility?

Volatility is how frequently you can hit paylines on online slots. Games with high volatility tend to hit less often but come with larger rewards. Slot machines with low volatility hit more frequently but come with lower prizes.

What are cluster pays on a slot machine?

Cluster pays are when you achieve a win by aligning matching symbols in horizontal or vertical positions within the grid. Other types of paylines include fixed paylines, all-ways-pays, and Megaways.

Can I play online slots for free?

Yes, you can. Most online casinos in Canada offer demo versions of the slot machines they house. Playing slots for free helps you understand how the games work, what their features are, and how often you can win. We suggest checking a few out and saving them in your favourites before choosing which to stake real money on.

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