With the coronavirus showing no signs of going away any time soon, most of us are continuing to live life stuck at home, through our smartphones. Bars and clubs, once places we’d go to unwind, are now biohazard death traps and they close earlier in the evenings. It should come as no surprise that more and more people are looking online for love and more short-term kicks. So, with the field more crowded than ever, let’s look at online dating tips to help you stand out from the pack and nail that all important first date.
1. Pick the right online dating site
If you’ve just come out of a five-year relationship, chances are that you’re not looking to be starting a family with the next person you hook up with, nor will a single septuagenarian be looking to make a start with teenage dating online. Fortunately, there are so many dating sites out there it would take a lifetime to register with all of them. Pick the best online dating sites that suit the kind of encounter and commitment level you’re looking for, to make sure all parties are wasting the minimum amount of time.
2. Choose the right picture
In the restaurant business, there’s a saying that people “eat with their eyes first”. While we’d like to think we’re not shallow deep down, we usually have a good idea of what we’re attracted to, and a great idea of what doesn’t do it for us. No matter how witty your bio, without a good picture you may fall at the first hurdle when it comes to online dating, so pick something flattering that’s not too busy and shows that you’re a (hopefully) well-adjusted person who can have fun.
3. Truth your profile
Everyone has a temptation to sanitise themselves in their profiles whilst perhaps over-exaggerating their own selling points when dating online. This is a complete case of hustling backwards, as vulnerability and sincerity are most likely what’re going to make you stand out over everyone else’s formulaic humble brags. If you have a weird passion or odd (but not gross) habit, let people know. Confidence is attractive, and hooking someone’s interest with who you really are gives you the home field advantage going forward.
4. You don’t have to respond to everyone dating online
Online dating is a numbers game, and if you’re putting effort into getting yourself out there then you should expect that in return. If you’re getting lukewarm, generic messages and the profile picture doesn’t do it for you, do both of you a favour and move on to getting a better return on investment for your energies elsewhere.
5. Ace the First Message
You already know the saying about first impressions, and should your pic and bio have gotten a pass mark, a great first message can help seal the deal. Tailor it around the person you’re talking to: a full-blown dime will likely be bored to tears by physical compliments, while a gentle jibe might bomb with someone struggling with their confidence when dating online. Keep things light and non-sexual to leave the door open for the rest of the conversation.
6. Study their Profile
When dating online, go through a person’s profile with a fine tooth comb, and after that, run it under a microscope. Try and pick up something most people will have missed, like an obscure film you’ve both seen, or a country you’ve both been to. Do you have an interest in common with their career or hobbies? Just like a real-life encounter, these are the conversational ice breakers that can keep the conversation flowing.
7. Move the talk elsewhere
Chatting through a dating app is just that, and you want to get some distance from the other enquiries in someone’s inbox and make things a little more personal. Try and move the conversation to WhatsApp or Facebook after introductions have been made. Talk will seem more casual, and helps establish you as a part of someone’s life and not just an online dating profile.
8. Keep the first date casual
When riding the ADD carousel that is dating online, keep things simple for the first date. A coffee or a quiet drink is the perfect low pressure setting for the initial contact from dating online, compared to dinner or a movie where the activity can stifle the flow of conversation.
9. Keep your private life private
While terrible experiences you’ve both had dating online are a great icebreaker, most people don’t need to know the when and the how of the times fireworks have gone off with other people in the past. Make the date about you two in the here and now.
10. Don’t be afraid to go for the first kiss
Obviously this is contingent on the date having gone well and feeling a mutual spark, but if those are there then go for it. Assuming you’re not given to wild miscalculations in this department, it helps establish both of you as more than just the product of free dating online, and confidence is always attractive.
Conclusion: Dating online has never been easier
For women and men, dating online can be an intimidating prospect, but when you get the hang of it you’ll have access to a pool of romantic opportunities that’s never been bigger. Have you had any horror stories from dating online? Or maybe you’ve met your current partner from a dating app? Let us know how it went in the comments section below!
Alternatively, share your own online dating tips! You might just help some of our readers find the love of their life!
About the author:
Patricia Jackson is a psychologist and relationship expert. She recently discovered her talent as a writer and is now sharing her experiences and thoughts about love, relationships, and family. Patricia loves to spend her free time with her family, traveling together, and developing her creative talents.