Some people view online dating as a chore. A necessary evil to find “the one.” Others see it as a fun way to meet new people, enjoy new experiences, and maybe find love. The results that you get from online dating depend heavily on how you approach it and what steps you take to improve your chances. By following a few easy tips, you can get the best results from your online dating experience.
1. Know Your Motives
The first step in getting the most out of your online dating experience is to know exactly what you want from the experience. Are you seeking a companion? A long-term partner? A spouse? Do you just want to enjoy a few casual hookups? Perhaps a partner for long-distance travel? If you go into the online dating realm completely open and honest about what you want, you will have better chances of linking with the right person.
2. Use the Right Sites
There are some online dating sites that are tailored for people who are looking for a spouse, while some are for casual hookups. Free dating sites often deliver fewer desirable results for people who are looking for long-term, serious relationships. If you are seeking a spouse, it pays to use paid dating sites for people who are serious about finding a mate. A person who is paying each month to use a dating site is less likely to be looking for a hookup than someone using a free site. For website recommendations, click here.
3. Limit Your Time on the Apps
It can be thrilling to be able to click through an endless supply of matches, comparing them by height, occupation, body type, and personal essay. While this may seem like fun at first, it can quickly become draining as all of the profiles blur into one. It can also make it harder for you to choose one. Studies have shown that people who are given more options end up with “the paradox of choice,” and are unable to decide on any of them. If you give yourself a time limit, you will be better able to choose the right person without being overwhelmed.
4. Be Yourself
While everyone wants to put their best foot forward when it comes to finding a partner online, it pays to simply be yourself. Don’t try to change your personality to fit what you think your ideal partner might like or use older pictures in an attempt to look better. Use a current picture and be honest about who you are and what you are hoping to achieve with online dating. Remember that the goal here is not to get the most possible matches. The goal is to get the matches that best fit who you are and who you want to attract. While most people embellish a bit on their profiles by adding a few inches of height or shaving off a few pounds, it’s best to be as honest as possible.
5. Meet Your Matches Offline Quickly
You can learn a lot about a person by interacting with them through text and chat. The problem with this, however, is that ongoing texting and chatting can allow people to build up a false image in their head of the other person and can lead to idealizing the other person. Meet with your match as soon as possible so that you can watch how he interacts with the world around him. When you ask your match out on a date, you can see what she looks like in person and figure out if this person is right for you. Meet up with the person in a safe location and always tell a trusted friend or family member where you will be going and who you will be meeting. Meeting up quickly also helps to weed out those who are not serious or who may be using fake or inaccurate photos online.
6. Remember That it’s a Numbers Game
The more people you meet, the more likely you are to find the right one. Try dating a few people at a time then narrowing it down to the one you like best. Respond to your matches, even they don’t exactly match your exact preferences. You may be pleasantly surprised. This is not to say, however, that you should entertain every single person you match with. Obviously, there will be some non-negotiables, but outside of those, it might help to broaden your perspective a bit and see what good can come of it.
Speaking of broadening one’s perspective, a lot of people complain about not getting enough matches. In some cases, having preferences that are extremely narrow can make it hard for you to match with people on dating sites. If you are looking for a man who is exactly 6’2″, five miles from you, who likes pineapple pizza, has a dog, and works in accounting, you may have a hard time meeting people. If your ideal woman is between the ages of 23-26, try expanding that age range to 28 or 29 to get more matches.
7. Fill Out Your Profile Completely
Some people are in a rush to get to the fun part, so they skip the work of completely filling out the profile. This is a mistake and will mean fewer matches for you. Write an essay for your personal profile that tells more about you, what you like and dislike, and the type of person you’re looking for. Be sure to include multiple, recent photos that show you in your best light. Finally, answer any questionnaires that the site offers that will give your potential matches a glimpse into your personality. By taking the time to fill out your profile, you will attract higher quality matches and weed out the ones who simply look at photos and swipe.
8. Initiate Contact
Men tend to be at a disadvantage on dating sites as there are usually more men than women with profiles. This means that the few women who post on these sites are often bombarded with inbox messages from men. Women can use this to their advantage by sending the first message to a man that catches their attention. Some people on dating sites simply copy and paste the same message to several people on the site. Most people can see right through this tactic and will ignore you if you try this. Craft a message that is personal and unique to the user. Mention something that you like about their profile or something that the two of you have in common. By initiating contact and sending personalized messages, you will have better chances of meeting the person who is right for you.
9. Don’t Get Discouraged
Remember that there are many options of partners on the Web, and most people on dating sites have thousands of choices. This bevy of choices can make it hard for anyone to decide on just one person, so don’t be discouraged if there are a few rejections here and there. Often times people reject a match for reasons that have nothing to do with the person’s desirability. Sometimes people reconnect with an ex, get distracted by work, or simply decide to go with another match. Don’t take it personally and keep trying until you get results.
10. Have Fun With It
Online dating can seem like a part-time job. Between scanning profiles, crafting essays, and responding to messages, it can be quite time-consuming. Don’t lose sight of the goal here, and that’s to enjoy yourself and have fun. If a date asks you out, suggest a place that you enjoy that they would also enjoy. If you are the one planning the date, talk to your match about what they would like to do and have fun. Get creative and think outside of the “dinner and a movie” box.
When it comes to finding your match online, the key is to have fun and to enjoy the ride. By being yourself, using the right apps, and meeting with your matches in person, you will be more likely to find “the one.”