So you have your profile and photos posted and now you're wondering how to get a date. To help you make the leap and up your odds for success, we've come up with a simple recipe that seems to work wonders:
Ingredients for online dating success:
- a completed profile that's snappy and spell checked
- at least one photo with a smile
- openness to meeting new people
- a good attitude
- being ready to have fun
- understanding that it might take a while before you meet "the one"
- Find ten people that catch your eye. Do a new search every week for members in your area. Scan through and pick ten. Add the top ten to your Favorites list so you don't lose track.
Most people find love when they least expect it, so try broadening your search once in a while. Even if someone is one or two inches too tall or too short, they might surprise you... in a good way.
- Pick at least five to contact each week. Go with your gut to make the cut, and if you can't resist all ten, keep them on the list. (If you don't have a Premium Membership, sign up at a low monthly fee so you have the option to contact people at any time.)
- Compose a personalized email for each of the five. Make it easy on yourself with our 5-Step Email Guide.
- Send all five emails! Don't be shy. You won't get a date until you make the effort.
If you meet someone who's nice but not for you, set him or her up with a friend. Then tell your friends to do the same for you and watch your dating circle grow.
- Respond to all people who reply to your first email. Keep the email going like you would a conversation - pay close attention to what the person is saying and respond honestly, ask a lot of questions, keep it light, be polite, don't reveal too much at first (leave something for when you meet in person).
- Respond to everyone who contacts you first. You never know what great person you might find behind that email! And remember that it takes at least a few emails to get a sense of someone. If you're definitely not interested, a simple "I'm sorry, but I can't correspond with you right now" will do.
Do new searches as often as possible. People join the site daily and you don't want to miss someone who is perfect for you.
- When you find someone that seems interesting enough to meet (at least 3 emails back and forth is a good rule of thumb), ask to talk on the phone or get together offline. If the person is interested, set up a casual date. See our First Date Basics for some helpful hints about making it happen.
- Kick back and enjoy the date. Keep in mind that you're going on a first date, not walking down the aisle, so expect to meet a new friend, not your life mate. Keeping your expectations in check takes the pressure off and is one of the keys to a fantastic first date.
Repeat as desired and have fun!