Have you tried online dating? If you haven’t and you’re wanting to find the love of your life, it may be time to give it a shot.
In the US right now, 1 out of 6 marriages originated online. These days, 30% of couples meet on the internet.
These are big numbers.
But it’s not enough to simply download an app or register for a dating site. Apparently 56% of men who create an online dating profile don’t get even one single message, and 97% of people quit dating sites within 3 months.
The reality is that online dating is time consuming.
If you’re going to try online dating, you need to do it properly. There are some simple tricks to make yourself stand out and improve your chances of forming a deep and meaningful connection with someone.
Thankfully, we have access to a number of discoveries through the data collected by the blog OKTrends by OkCupid. OkCupid has over 3.5 million active users.
Scott Valdez from Virtual Dating Assistants put together the following data-driven dating tips from OKCupid’s data set and their own client base.
10. It helps to pay for your online dating
The first point is that it pays to pay for your online dating.
Virtual Dating Assistants found that each message they send on a pay site (for example, Match.com) was two times more likely to result in a date as a free site (e.g. Tinder).
Valdez suggests, “It makes sense that people who are dropping $20-60 per month for memberships are more serious about arranging a date offline.”
While there are some bad paid sites out there, you will likely find success with reliable sites like Match.
9. Don’t use flash in your photos
Do you use flash to make yourself look clearer in your photos?
If you want success on dating sites, you need to stop.
According to data analysis by OKCupid, flash adds 7 years to your age. I’m 37 years old, so I’ll look as young as a 30 year old using flash on their camera.
8. Men, don’t smile for the camera
Another tip for the photos you’re taking.
Men, don’t smile.
OKCupid found that men who look away from the camera and don’t smile have a much higher chance of matching with someone and dating them than those who smile and look straight at the camera.
OKCupid CEO Sam Yagan has hazarded a guess as to why this is the case. He thinks that men who look straight at the camera look more intimidating than men who look away from the camera. Also, smiling at the camera makes you look like you’re seeking approval.
“By not looking,” he said, “you appear stronger and more challenging while simultaneously building aura and mystique.”
7. Women, smiles are in vogue
If you’re a woman, ignore the advice above. The data suggests you’re more likely to match with someone if you smile.
6. If you’ve got it, flaunt it
Women in their early 20s who show cleavage in their photos get 24% more responses. What’s even more interesting is that women in the 30s who show cleavage get 79% more responses!
It’s similar for men when they show their abs. This could be that men only show their abs when they’ve got abs to show. Valdez also suggests that men show off their abs in a way that isn’t showing off. For example, photos while playing sport or diving into a pool.
5. You’re only as good as your worst photo
It’s difficult to choose the right photos to show. That’s why OKCupid provided a tool called MyBestFace. It helps you to quickly figure out which of your photos are getting you matches and which photos are scaring away your potential suitors.
4. Message the most active users
If you message someone who wasn’t active for three weeks. your response rate is 60% lower.
Luckily, Match.com gives you this information. Use the features available to message people who will get back to you quickly.
It helps you use the dating websites more efficiently, bringing you a few steps closer to finding the love of your life.
3. Tailor your approach based on the age of your audience
Data collected by Virtual Dating Assistants shows that you need to tailor your approach based on the age of the person you’re targeting.
They put together a long email (over 150 words) that expresses interest, draws commonalities (it’s customized), demonstrates humor and shows a sense of ambition and adventure. It got a 9.7% response rate from women in their 20s, a 20.5% response rate from 30-somethings and a 50.3% response rate from women 40 and above.
They found that women in their 20s rejected these more serious approaches, preferring some slight cockiness.
2. Keep your profile updated
Virtual Dating Assistants found a correlation between getting more responses and keeping your profile freshly updated.
Making a change to your profile sends you to the top of various feeds on Match.com.
“Basically, they’ve got an algorithm,” according to Valdez. “It puts some serious weight on the freshness of the profile content.”
1. Get started now
Finally, the best advice we can give you about online dating is to stop thinking and start doing.
There’s so much stigma around online dating, but the times have changed.
Many people are using online dating to find the love of their lives.
You could try free tools such as Tinder, but the experts say that paying for online dating with sites like Match.com are your best approach to cutting through the noise and finding someone you genuinely connect with.
Stop thinking about it. Start acting. Head on over to Match.com (or a similar site) and create a profile now.