Meeting a potential date through friends or family is so yesterday, and a new study proves that. According to the researchers, online is now the top choice for U.S. adults who want to meet someone new.
In fact, almost 20% of U.S Internet users are on online dating sites or apps.
That should tell you that there’s no longer a stigma surrounding online dating. That it’s now a widely-accepted practice all over the world.
The thing is, meeting someone online — and who you’ll like in person — is easier said than done.
That’s why I’ve rounded up these online dating tips to help you get started. Follow them all, and you’ll have more chances of finding that person who may turn out to be your soulmate!
1. You Have Many Options – Not Just Tinder
What I’m saying is, Tinder is only one of your many options when it comes to online dating platforms. Granted, it’s super easy to use, with you only having to swipe right if someone catches your interest. But you may find it a bit superficial, as it relies more on users’ photos, or in short, appearances.
Tinder is still a great way to meet people, especially if you travel and want to meet like-minded folks. Its proximity-based feature lets you find people who may be up for coffee nearby. Who knows, you may even find a special yoga partner to stay fit and healthy with!
Moving on, there’s Match.com, one of the pioneers in open dating services in the U.S. and worldwide. You can sign up for free or go for a paid subscription to get access to more of its features. As of 2018, this website has created 10 million relationships in the U.S. alone.
Another popular app you should give a try is The League. It’s the go-to dating app of young professionals.
Bumble shares similarities with Tinder, except that its female members are in charge. It’s completely up to you to make the first move and send that catchy conversation starter.
The bottom line is, feel free to explore all your options to find platforms you’re most comfortable with.
2. Make Your Profile Shine and Stand Out
“Hi! I’m (insert name here) and I’m a (insert profession here)!”
That kind of profile won’t get you anywhere. Your name is already on the very top of your profile, so there’s no need to put in your description.
You may still include what you do for a living, but write in a way that can elicit smiles or raise eyebrows. For instance, rather than simply saying you’re a doctor, you can say “I can save lives.” Or, if you’re a chef, you can write “No one ever gets hungry when they’re with me.”
3. Never Ever Lie on Your Profile
This one is more than a piece of online dating advice – it’s a life principle you should always live by. If you want to be able to trust again, say after a heartbreak, it follows that you should ensure people can trust you too.
If you’re into punk music and not into hip-hop, then don’t say you love Jay-Z or Drake. If you’re more of a Netflix gal than a strolls-on-the-beach girl, then don’t write the latter on your profile. Don’t lie, period.
4. … Not Even with the Camera
If you do, that’s self-body-shaming right there. Besides, posting photos from several years or xxx pounds ago is also a type of lie. You’re only setting both parties up for disappointment.
5. Candid and Full-Body Photos are Great
Selfies are important, but you should also consider uploading candid and full-body shots. The authenticity and spontaneity of candid photos can make your profile more “human”. Whereas full-body shots give other people a clearer idea of how tall or petite you are.
6. Start Chatting Up Those with the “Best” Profiles
The “best” profile depends on your own interests, likes, and personality.
For starters, it can be in the form of amazing visual story-telling (and error-free writing). Photos depicting the other person’s adventures in Norway, up Mt. Fuji, or snowboarding down the Rockies are all good examples.
It can also be a profile that made you smile (bonus points if you laughed) because of its genuine, feel-good humor.
What’s important is that what you read and saw caught your interest. If it did, then don’t be afraid to start the conversation.
7. … But Also Know Who to Avoid
One of the most important tips for online dating is to know how to spot people you’d rather avoid. This includes folks who have a profile that looks more like a Christmas wish list. Such as, “I’m looking for someone who has a great job, blonde hair, blue eyes, an excellent cook…”
First, because it’s possible that they’re describing their ex-girlfriends. Second, it’s a sign that they’re not open to meeting people other than what they have in mind. That can spell disaster, because most of the time, these people can be control freaks.
8. Serve Them Your Best Opening Lines
If you decide to send that first message, don’t start it with a polar question! They aren’t called “closed questions” for nothing. The last thing you want is to have contemplated for a long time only to get either a yes or a no answer.
Instead, curate a question based on the other person’s profile. For instance, if the guy posted quite a few photos of his outdoor adventures, ask something based on that. Like, “Of the mountains you hiked, which one gave you the greatest sense of accomplishment?”
This will make the other person feel that you have a genuine interest in him. After all, you took the time to read and go through his profile.
9. Don’t Keep Them Hanging
If you connected with someone online, don’t let the chatting or emailing go on too long. Invite him to have coffee or lunch somewhere you feel comfortable in. You can’t say for certain that you’ve connected if that connection remains digital.
10. … But Don’t Expect a Lot on the First Meet-Up
Even if you’ve already chatted for a few days, the person you’ll meet is still a stranger. Aside from his name, age, and what he does for a living, you still don’t know what he’s like in person.
So, don’t set too high of an expectation on the first date. There’s still a huge chance you guys won’t feel any spark, much less be soulmates.
11. And Never Share Your Home Address Right Away
Speaking of first meet-ups, don’t let your date pick you up at home, even if he offers. Also, tell a close friend or your sister about your date, especially the location. While that stranger may turn out to be your future husband, he’s still a stranger now, so better stay safe.
12. If Something Doesn’t Feel Right, It Likely Is
If your date cancels your plans a few hours before or doesn’t text you at all, take those as red flags. It’s possible that they’re already meeting someone else, or worse, are already taken.
You should also know how to spot a sociopath if you meet one. These people are so good in charming others that it can be hard to tell they don’t have a conscience. But if you notice that he says “I” or “me” most of the time, that’s narcissism, which is common in sociopaths.
Another red flag is when he texts you so many times in a day. That can be a sign of paranoia, which can mean mental instability.
13. Leave the Baggage at Home
Not talking about your ex is one of the most important online dating tips for women you should abide by. This topic will come up in the future, but not on your first or second date. Once you guys feel more comfortable with each other, then you can talk about it.
14. Prepare Yourself for a Few Mismatches
With millions of people using online dating apps, you won’t have a hard time finding dates. What you’ll find more difficult is finding a great match. And mismatches are bound to happen.
So, prepare yourself to go home disappointed after the first date. But think of it as a good thing too, since you found out right away you guys don’t click.
15. Don’t Be Too Quick to Give Up on Online Dating
It may take more than a few first-dates before you find someone who can potentially be your soulmate. You may even find yourself thinking you’re unlucky in love.
Don’t. Give online dating several more chances. Keep at it and soon enough, you may find someone you’ll share a deep connection with.
Always Keep these Online Dating Tips in Mind
Remember, these online dating tips won’t only help you find a romantic partner. They’re also designed to keep you safe from possible sex offenders. So, make sure you follow them before you decide to share your number with someone you met online.
And if you do find someone special through a dating app, do what you can to make it work! Check out this guide Post Male Syndrome wrote on how you can do exactly so you can make your relationship last.