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I signed up to a relationship website. What now?

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I signed up for a dating site. How do I make myself stand out and meet interesting people in this ocean of possibilities?

A top tip is to take some time to review and customize your profile frequently so it is always up-to-date. People often repeatedly return to view the same profiles. If you constantly have something new to say, they will keep returning to your profile. Remember that your profile is your gateway, and it will provide the first impression for a potential match. As such, it should be a priority for you to create a fantastic profile.
Online dating currently accounts for about one in five new relationships, and one in every six marriages across the US. With so many possible online partners, it's easy to get confused. It takes some skill to make a good first impression the right way, and to find information on someone´s profile to decide whether you want to chat to them.
From the size and perspective of your photo, to talking about video games and your mother, there are a variety of things that you should do, and some that you should avoid, when trying to make a good first impression. We'll give you some tips on how to build your profile and present yourself correctly online.

Your username says a lot about you!

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Your name and user profile are the first things people see when they are browsing a dating site.
When you create your profile, make it as if you were writing a commercial about yourself, but aimed towards to a future love interest. Think about the types of people you would like to have a relationship with and plan an appropriate profile to attract them.
To ensure your security, your username on any site, particularly on a dating site, should not be your real name.
Unpleasant people can use your name to explore private information that is simple to find online, such as your address and phone number. Only when you feel comfortable with your new love interest you should share your real name - without displaying it to everyone.
You should also exercise caution when using usernames with sexual meanings or offensive terms. Very few people will be interested in people who are offensive in their usernames. Be careful when trying to be humorous. Other people may not find it so funny.

Tell everyone more about you

Everything you say on your profile needs to be about you. Are you vegan? Show the world why and what it means to you, instead of explaining what veganism is. Do you like to talk about politics? Use it as a starting point for a conversation. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Rather than just labelling yourself, mention what it means to you. You could even add questions into your profile for a potential match to answer in their first message.
The key to a good profile on a dating site is to display an authentic representation of yourself. In fact, the whole purpose of dating sites is to find someone with whom you are truly compatible. Think about the elements that make you different from other people and put them on your profile.
When you are creating a profile, you must stimulate interest in the person on the other side of the screen. For example, when you meet an interesting person at a party, you smile, make a joke and have a pleasant conversation according to your mutual interests. Your profile needs to serve the same purpose.
A good sense of humour is effective, and honesty offers the most accurate results. For example, if you say you are a workaholic, it means you will have a restricted amount of time for the relationship and this will come as no surprise to anyone. Instead of leading with things like this, focus on the positive points of your personality and make it very clear what you are truly looking for instead of talking about everything you don?t want in a partner
Another important tip is to check for spelling and grammatical errors. These can occur very easily and can drive away many people. Whenever you are unsure, use your PC to spell check, or ask a friend to check your profile before posting it.

Too much versus too little

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The "About Me" section of a dating site is where the magic happens. If a person looks at your photo and username and then decides to find out more about you, make sure it pays off for them to take some time to read your profile.
An empty profile can result in a silent encounter. Regardless of how good your picture is, no one who is seriously interested in finding love likes profiles that don?t say anything about the person. On the other hand, don´t offer too much information or you?ll have nothing to talk about later.
When you have such little space to talk about yourself, don´t include your whole life story. Instead, proceed directly to impact phrases. Talk about a quick and humorous story, a give favourite quote
Stay away from boring clichés, like "I love to cuddle on the couch with a glass of wine", even if that's what you like to do. You'll read the same thing repeatedly in other people's profiles and it reveals very little.
Be sure to consider adding something a bit more unusual so that you stand out amid so many other profiles. Think of topics that could trigger an online conversation.

Should I talk about work or not?

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This is a controversial subject. Some experts will tell you not to mention your profession on a relationship website, but you will also find many who recommend otherwise.
Online relationship websites provide multiple partner options in real time, allowing for a greater selection of potential candidates. This variety means a better chance of getting partners with lower, similar, or higher levels of personal attributes.
This includes schooling, which is widely used in dating as an indicator of expected resources and provisions, as it may represent financial advantages.
Talking about your work, or artistic hobbies and passions, provides your potential partners with a connection point. This can help you find common interests and goals. Talking about your work immediately prevents your partner from having to ask about it later. Therefore, it can reduce any uncomfortable conversations, disagreements, or hurt feelings in the future. In the end, it's best to be open-minded and have fun!

Don´t worry too much about physical appearance

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Women tend to lie about their weight on their profile, while men are inclined to lie about their height. Honesty is a perfect policy in this situation, as it means there will be no surprises when you meet.
Normally, we search for matching criteria and characteristics in a partner, such as age, appearance, attractiveness, character, culture, education, faith and ethnicity. However, the internet has significantly altered this approach.
Try not to choose your partners focused entirely on physical characteristics. Not everyone looks like their photos and some people will look better in the pictures than in real life. If physical attraction is crucial to you, you will lose out on some profiles that will not attract you instantly. This may be a mistake. Giving a chance to someone who is not all that physically attractive at first may allow you to have an idea of who they are in the real world, not just on a computer screen.

Add great photos!

While you should try not to worry too much about appearance, it is important to include a photo in your profile. You need to be picky about which photos to post. Use a current photo, ideally taken a year ago at most, that is a good representation of yourself.
Use an unaltered profile photo. Many people are tempted to use applications like Photoshop or filters to improve their photos. The problem with this is that you will not have that appearance in person. You will not show up on your first date with the filter you used on Instagram. Your date will immediately notice that you are a little different and this can be very embarrassing. There is nothing worse on a first date than to hear: "You look different from your pictures".
A user profile image where the head and shoulders appear, preferably not with a forced pose, is a good way to add sincerity to your profile. A photo of you doing a sports activity or a hobby is also a good idea, and will increase the chances of arousing the interest of people who practice these same activities.
Your photos should contain moments of your everyday life. A photo of the face is a good starting point, using a pose that expresses personality and exhibits your style. Other examples are things like a photo with you doing an activity you like, a photo with your friends which shows that you?re sociable, and a picture that includes your whole body to show what you look like.
Make sure your photos are high resolution and well lit. If the image looks grainy or is poor quality, you will not be displaying your features well, and it will be difficult for people to know what you look like.
And men: don´t take shirtless selfies! Even if you have the best body in the world, keep your shirt on! If you want to show off all the effort you've spent toning your body, do it naturally. Use a photo of you surfing on the beach, or hiking somewhere hot, or in the ring in a boxing match. A shirtless selfie is always tacky, a picture where you have your no shirt on in a more natural situation can be sexy. The difference in what this represents for women is crucial. A shirtless selfie says, "I want to show how hot I am and I only care about how I look". A picture of you practicing a sport where you happen to be shirtless says, "Look how carefree I am practicing my hobbies. Am I shirtless? I didn?t even notice because I don?t care about these things. I´m not aware of how hot I am".
Another important factor mentioned above is that your photos need to be recent. Nobody likes encounters that have the surprise of a person weighing ten pounds more than in the profile photo. Your profile photos must be from within a year. The more recent the better.

Pictures - great! Nudes - NEVER!

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Sending pictures of yourself without clothes on is a bad idea. You can´t control what will happen to them as soon as you click send. You have absolutely no idea what a person will do with compromising photos. The person may show them to their friends. The photos may be "accidentally" revealed in some way. They may mysteriously appear one day, when you least expect it, when you are striving for a promotion at work or beginning a relationship with someone new.
You won´t know, even if you take all the precautions. In the heat of the moment, it might seem like a great idea to send a nude, but it never will be ? even if it is for a trusted partner. What if one day the cell phone or computer breaks and is sent to repair? A stranger will have access to all your intimate photos.
Most people send nudes to attract their partners and give a preview of what is to come. There is nothing wrong with providing something for your partner to think about when they are at a distance. This is part of a healthy relationship, and a largely positive thing, but be wise about it.
Women, especially, should be careful and cautiously consider a request for nudes. Men can ask for this more than once, and the answer doesn´t have to be yes. If you´re embarrassed, it is okay to refuse. If he insists, it's because he´s an idiot and doesn´t deserve another minute of your attention.

Making a good first impression is not easy, but it´s worth the effort

Keep in mind that first impressions are not always reliable, particularly when it comes to internet dating. People generally don?t represent themselves accurately. Regardless of where or how you meet someone, there is the need for time to get acquainted with them.
You need to try to talk to someone in several situations, some good and some not so good, before you decide to meet them. For example, how does this individual react under stress when things don´t look good or when they are exhausted, discouraged, or hungry?
The starting point for finding an ideal partner is to identify what you want and what you need from a partner.
Desires are negotiable, your requirements are not. Desires consist of the things you think you would like in a partner, such as occupation, personality, and physical attributes such as height, weight and hair colour. Even though certain traits may seem important to you initially, after a while you may find that you have unnecessarily restricted your choices.
The requirements are different from the desires because they are the things that matter most to you, such as values, beliefs, or goals in life. These are not easy to find in a person on the street, or just by reading profiles or having a drink in the bar at a cocktail party. You should get to know the person.
You´ve spent a lot of time and energy creating a good profile for yourself, and a lot of other people have as well. Just like you, these people are trying to communicate with you and with several potential partners. Try to make a good first impression, but don´t stress too much about it. Over time, you will have plenty of opportunities to show your true self.

Summary

  • Choose your username wisely. It is the first thing the other person reads about you.
  • Talk about yourself and be honest in what you write.
  • Be careful not to talk too much or too little.
  • You can mention your work if you think it is an important factor in understanding your personality.
  • Don´t focus so much on physical characteristics. If you do, you may be missing the opportunity to meet someone interesting.
  • Don´t add random photos - choose them carefully.
  • Don´t send nudes. You don't need to do these types of things to find someone.
  • Don´t stress too much about it. Other people are in the same situation as you, so relax and have fun!

References

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