10 Commandments for Online Dating Newbies

We all have to start somewhere and that includes people that are just getting into online dating. If you are considering signing up for an online dating site we want to encourage you and let you know that it truly is a great way to meet people that you would never get to know any other way. We also recognize that like with anything else, it can be difficult to get the ball rolling.  First things first, you will soon learn more about the importance of your online dating profile (your first impression to the community).  This can cause serious heartburn as you struggle with honesty and not wanting to sound desperate (even if you are a little).  Based upon our years of experience with online dating sites though we can provide you with some basic rules that will work for most general dating sites (adult dating sites and alternative dating sites are, well different).  We can’t guarantee your success if you follow these but we can help support your natural instincts which should be a bit of a confidence boost.  So without further ado, here are the 10 commandments for online dating newbies (and all other members too):

  1. Thou shalt pick out a good nickname.  You could just use your plain old ordinary name or you could be super creative (without being too out there) and really jump out at people.  Whatever you do, the best advice we can give is to make sure the name accurately reflects you, your interests, and your personality.  So don’t choose HappyGoLucky as your name if you are a closet worry wort.
  2. Thou shalt not be verbose in your profile.  You need to be clear, concise, and yet as flattering as you can be when creating your profile.  You can throw in some humor, but not too much and you should always make sure that you and a friend proofread your profile to avoid spelling and grammar errors.
  3. Thou must upload your best photo.  Make sure the photo is high quality and portrays the right image you want to send to other site members.  For instance if you love dogs and want a dog lover then you might make sure you choose a picture with your best friend (presumably your dog).
  4. Thou must respond to other members.  You need to be that social butterfly that you may or may not be offline.  Make sure you communicate effectively without getting over-the-top.  Respond to each email but don’t necessarily respond 50 times in an hour.  However, definitely get back to everyone that shoots you a first message to let the community know that you are both active and friendly.
  5. Thou must take it slow.  So when you first get the chance to communicate with someone (so you have some nibbles), you need to take it easy and resist the urge to immediately tell them your life story.  Just break it up into digestible pieces so you don’t overwhelm them and hence scare them off.
  6. Thou must also make contact proactively.  Don’t just sit back and expect people to find your profile and contact you.  You should try to touch base with a wide variety of people that seem interesting to you.  Basically, don’t just pin all of your hopes on one conversation.  You should increase your odds of finding a great match by communicating with several people.  A simple rule would be to contact a couple of people a day to get started.  Again, don’t contact 100 because you can’t possibly keep up with that many in the off chance that even 10% of them respond.
  7. Thou shalt not lie.  Well that’s just a great rule for dating in general when you can keep it you always should try.  Basically, one of the things that will get you a bad reputation in a dating community is to completely fabricate stories about yourself.  Remember that in the age of the Internet it’s pretty easy to check facts on anyone.
  8. Thou shalt not get too personal.  Remember to hold off from the personal questions until you really know the person a little bit better.  Continuously talking about sex (too much, too little, how you like it, etc.) can really put some people off.  While eventually they may be very interested at the beginning unless you are on an adult dating site it is a bit too much.
  9. Thou shalt be safe and smart.  Don’t disclose too much personal information initially at least.  The reason the dating sites exist is to keep everything contained to the site to be able to avoid giving out your personal IM, email, address, and phone number.  Just use the tools that are provided and if another member wants to take it outside the dating site you might want to just let them go.
  10. Thou shalt not meet in person first.  The smartest thing to do as you evolve from online to offline is to have multiple communications first and then eventually talk to the person via skype, phone, or whatever method works for both of you (video chat is preferred).  The closer you can get to meeting in person before you actually risk meeting in person the better (see commandment #9).

These are just some very basic rules for people that are really new to online dating.  We think it is absolutely a great way to get to know people in a safe and completely non-threatening way.  Whenever you get into a situation with someone you just aren’t interested in anymore you block them on the dating site and simply just don’t read anything from them going forward.  It’s a bit less personal until YOU decide it’s time for it to become more personal.  Remember, you are in control of your online dating experience and you need to use that to your advantage.  Be smart, be safe, and of course have a blast!

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