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How to Use Online Dating Sites: The Right Way

Updated on April 18, 2016

Deciding to Online Date

Are you tired of waiting around and not finding a special person for you? Have you gone to desperate measures or have finally considered using online dating just to try it out? Trying out online dating sites can be a fun and even life changing experience. Some sites have a cost to sign up while others you can use their standard site for free. First, you need to know how to use them and what to look for. Here are some tips to help you with finding that special someone:

Using The Right Dating Websites

Let's get the main concern out of the way. What intentions do you have with people on the site? If you are a guy or gal just wanting sex, then let the users know that. There is a special box just for you guys that ask if you're just looking to hookup. People won't disgrace you. Honestly, some people might even respect you more since you are willing to come right out and say it.

Another way to tell if a person is just wanting to hookup is what website/app he is using. For instance, Hot or Not is specifically used to tell users if they are hot or not and for messaging each other sexual inquiries. 99.9% of the time the users on there are just wanting to hookup.

If you are using a website for just friends or searching for that special someone, make sure you also say so on your profile. Dating websites such as PlentyOfFish(POF) or OKCupid are two of the best ones for searching for friends or relationships.

Filling the Information Out

Once you've got on a good website/app, it's time to fill out information about yourself. Some websites have create usernames that will show publicly to other users. Pick something simple and not weird. Your username says a lot about yourself. No one wants to talk to a person who has the name "Hottie69."

After choosing a name, it will ask for information about yourself. You need to be truthful. You should be careful giving out personal information such as: income, phone numbers, and emails. It's best to talk to people for a little while on the app first in order to get a good vibe from them. Do not give out personal information to them that can cause you harm. You can give out information like this:

  • Smoker/Non-Smoker
  • Graduated high school or college
  • Drinker/Non-Drinker
  • Hobbies
  • Physical Attributes

Those are just some examples that are safe to give out. It's a good idea to have these listed anyways because these qualities matter when other people try to find someone they will like.

It's also a good idea not to fib on your information. Do not waste someone's time. Keep all your information up to date so people will get a good idea about you.

Adding The Right Pictures

Users should definitely add pictures to their profile. It helps you get noticed and gives you a better chance in finding someone. Keeping your pictures up to date is also a great idea. Having pictures that are several years old isn't fair to other people. You wouldn't want to find out the person you found attractive was actually only attractive five years ago.

Along with adding up to date pictures, you should add more than one picture because it shows other users you aren't a fake. Some people create fake profiles in order to meet up with you and try and do who knows what. Be safe and be smart. If you can show other users that you are really you then only find people who also show that they are really them.

When it comes to adding pictures, add pictures that show your face and show you doing a hobby. It is an awesome idea to show your personality in pictures. For example, If you like animals, take a picture with some or your pets. If you are into sports, have pictures of you playing a sport. Get creative and show your personality!

Sending and Receiving Messages

You will receive a ton of messages at times. If you are not interested, then do not show it to them. If you are a girl, most guys will just message you telling you how pretty you are or even just saying hey. Girls like to be flattered, but they want someone to stick out. Say something about what their profile said and what you liked about them.

Girls, do not wait for the guy to message you. Stop being shy and get out there. Find a guy who showed interest enough to fill his information out and include nice pictures. If you found one that you might consider, then send a well thought out message saying what you liked about him or something he put on his profile. Guys like to be flattered just as much as girls do, but most guys wouldn't admit that.

When you have found someone you liked, message them on the website for awhile until you get a good enough vibe. Trust your instincts. Play the 20 question game and find out your differences and similarities. Find them on Facebook or Google search their name. It is not necessarily "stalking," it is just a precaution for yourself. People can be nice and interesting, but still be a creep at the same time.

Meeting In Real Life

When it comes to finally meeting that person you've been talking to for awhile, it is important that you meet in a public area preferably during the day. Never meet them at their or your house. Pick a safe public place like inside a mall or at a restaurant. Also make sure someone like your family or friend knows you are meeting a person, and where you are meeting them. It is always best to be on the safe side just in case.

Plans for meeting a person for the first time can be a little challenging. Dinner or a movie are some ideas, but something not as awkward and will allow you to talk more would be better. If you both like the outdoors, go for a walk in the park or by the beach. You could also play sports or go sightseeing. Even if you've both already seen it, you guys didn't go to experience it together.

By the first date, you should know if you like the person or not. If you had a good time and would like to see them again, make sure you still meet a couple more times in a public area. Just to get use to them and to see how they act in a public environment. If you did not like them, let them know you were glad to have met them and let them off easy.

Do Not Get Discouraged

Sorting through messages and trying to find a decent individual can get frustrating at times. It may take awhile and some patience. Never get discouraged if you can't find someone you like or if someone you like may not be interested. If the first time you meet someone doesn't go well and you do not want to pursue anything with them, do not give up. The saying does go, "There are plenty of fish in the sea."

Online Dating Statistics

For the past couple of years, online dating websites/apps have gone up in use and in popularity. The Pew Research Center states nearly nine-in-ten Americans are online, and dating on the Web has grown in both popularity and acceptance. The graph below shows how much it has increased between 2005 and 2013.

Attitudes Toward Online Dating
Attitudes Toward Online Dating | Source

From the Statistic Brain Research Institute website, 17% of marriages in the last year have been because of a dating website. 20% of committed relationships began online.

Good Luck Online Dating

If you are considering trying to online date, do it the right way! Do not waste people's time and try not to waste your own. If you use it correctly you really can find someone perfect for you. If you use it and it doesn't feel right, it might just mean it's not right for you and you like to meet people the old fashion way.

Have you ever used or will use an online dating site?

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© 2015 Celia Silk

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    • Celia Silk profile imageAUTHOR

      Celia Silk 

      3 years ago from Tulsa, Oklahoma

      That is a great idea! That way no scamming would be going on! Thank you so much!

    • lyoness913 profile image

      Summer LeBlanc 

      3 years ago from H-Town

      I was having a discussion with one of my co-workers the other day, and he says he wants to create a dating site where everyone pays a bit more but they all get a state and federal background check. I thought it was interesting! Great hub, good advice!

      -Wendi

    • SouradipSinha profile image

      Souradip Sinha 

      3 years ago from Calcutta

      Nicely written. :)

    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 

      3 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      Well-written Hub with lots of advice, voted up.

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