For some (probably most) online dating can be this huge unknown world that people are fearful to delve into. Most of the time, we only really retain the horror recounters and terrible ‘remember when’s rather than the success stories.
Online dating isn’t always for everyone but it can be a great alternative to explore – as long as you go in with your eyes open and some tips behind you.
The facts and figures
Firstly, it’s always important to be aware of how these type of dating services can lead to a potential relationship. It’s been seen that on some sites where users have the freedom to choose who they date, there is a level of difficulty and unsuccessful outcomes because people can’t make suitable decisions. What’s more, algorithmic matching services are also not always best.
Also read: Getting over the fear of dating
Research suggests that in terms of long lasting relationships, these methods don’t always get it right because interaction and personality are the most important signs and these can’t be measured until the two people actually meet.
However, this doesn’t mean that online dating doesn’t work. It’s actually one of the best ways to meet someone – in this day and age, it’s very difficult to meet someone organically or even have the courage to approach someone at a bar or event. However, with this process, it immediately links you up with someone who you know fancies you and will be willing to meet up for a date.
Also, and most importantly, it links you up with someone who is seeking a relationship, rather than that awkward conversation when you realise she’s not single.
Useful online dating tips
- Be open – if you are on a site that forces you to compare two people and choose one, make sure you are not being superficial in your decisions as this won’t lead to anything long lasting.
- Be switched on – obviously the serious horror stories are not something you should ever really be afraid of but it’s important to keep your wits about you. For example, if you’ve never met them before, perhaps don’t have the first date at his place. Also, if there are some inappropriate messages being sent or any behaviour that makes you feel uncomfortable, don’t be afraid to report them – this will also save the next person who may match with them.
- Don’t spend too long talking online – people naturally feel a lot safer flirting and communicating behind a screen but the longer you do this the more difficult it will be when you finally have to meet up.
- Don’t lie – so you have kids? Great! Now don’t be afraid to share that with them. People think that if they withhold information long enough, it can just disappear. However, strangely enough, it doesn’t work like that – if they don’t like what you have to say, you’ve dodged a bullet and saved yourself a lot of time.
Also read: Best UK dating sites
Keep in mind
It’s important to know both sides of the story so there are also elements of online dating that you ought to be aware of before you embark.
- People do lie on their profiles so don’t always trust everything you read
- Check they are not after something else (i.e do both of you really want a relationship?
- Don’t use it because you are lazy – unfortunately our society is becoming increasingly guilty or substituting the important things in life for convenience so just make sure you aren’t doing the same
- Don’t go in with too high expectations
However, as with all dating, it’s important to know that there are positives and negatives and it is just a case of trying different things and working out what’s best for you. There is no harm in exploring this world of online dating to see if can lead to anything.
If it is something you want to consider, there are some things you have to work out first:
- What dating site works best for you and do you want to go on numerous ones?
- How do you want to come across in your profile and what photos should you use?
- Brush up on your messaging game and think about: what you want to say, how often you are going to message and how long do you want to wait until the first date
- What first date options you might explore and which do you think would be the best one for you?
Ultimately, online dating is fun and a good experience. Put the work into your profile and choices, have an open mind and your wits about you and who knows where it might lead!