There is more than one possible way of going about building a bankroll from nothing and this is just a suggested example. The primary purpose is to demonstrate some basics techniques and of course it all ultimately depends on have a winning game! All bonuses are only current at the time of writing (July 2004) and may vary over time.
Step 1 - Visit a no deposit poker site - Select a free poker bonus or bankroll at a site that you do not have an account at.
Download the Software, install it and set up and account. Do not deposit!!
This gets you free chips, no deposit required! Familiarise yourself on free play tables, before hitting the micro limit tables (e.g. 2c/4c) for which you have a safe bankroll.
Step 2 - Play Some Freerolls and Micro Limit
Enter freerolls and play micro limit games until you have at least $50. You will have to fight your way past a lot of players but there is cash at the end of it and you will be improving your poker skills all the time. Again, make sure you've read Fred Parker's Freeroll Tournament Strategy before hitting these up!
Look at the freeroll prize structure and adjust your play accordingly. If there are 3000 entrants and only 150 places pay out, then play aggressively early on. If there are 500 entrants and 250 places pay, then you can afford to be really tight until you get into the money.
This part of the process takes the most time. Patience is critical here. Every cent counts.
Step 3 - Move up the Limits
Once you have a bankroll of $50 you have enough to start playing properly. You should know by now whether you prefer tournaments or cash games. Keep to games that are proportionate to your bankroll. See section above on bankroll. Remember, if you lose your bankroll it is very difficult to start this process again without depositing your own cash because many of the bonus opportunities are one time only. Take it steady!! As your bankroll grows, you can play higher limits and the rate of growth will accelerate.
Your target is to get to at least $200.
Step 4 - Open a Neteller Account.
Neteller is an online banking account. They do not offer services to residents of the USA, however, so if you are from the USA, you will need to check the deposit options at the sites you decide to join. For everyone else, Neteller is one of the best options. Although there are fees for instant deposits, you can make standard deposites and cash out from Neteller, as well as transfer to and from poker sites without any charges. Neteller is quick and easy to use and it keeps your poker bankroll separate from the rent money.
Deposit a small amount into your Neteller account, so you can make the deposit referred to in Step 5 below. Remember you need to deposit a bit more to pay the Neteller deposit fee. This should be the only time you have to deposit your own money!
If you have questions, view the Neteller Tutorial or contact a site administrator here for one on one help in funding your online poker account.
Step 5 - Deposit at the poker room where you have built your small $50 bankroll.
To withdraw free money you normally need to make a deposit first. I believe that the minimum deposit at most sites is around $20.
If you have the cash then obviously you might want to deposit more and earn the maximum first deposit bonus.