You’ve taken the plunge and created a stellar online dating profile, complete with a picture that really shows off your best assets. Now that you have perfected your dating site profile, it’s time to reach out and message potential dates.
Yes, it’s nerve-wracking to make the first move. There’s the fear of rejection and every other anxiety that comes with sending the first communique. But without taking this risk, you’ll never talk to them–and that will make it quite difficult ever to meet anyone–which is why you’re on a dating site in the first place.
If you’re worried about what to say in that all-important first impression point of contact, don’t worry; we can help with tips and tricks to send better messages on dating sites!
The first thing to do is to put yourself out there and contact the people who interest you. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people you like, even if you’ve sent messages in the past and not gotten responses. If that’s happened to you, there may be a small flaw in your approach if you aren’t receiving any replies.
To make it easier for you to start talking to anyone who catches your eye, we have compiled the results of several research studies on what prompts the most replies on different dating sites and included some of our own.
If you want to up your chances of getting a reply, then read on!
Start Your First Message with an Unconventional Hello
Your goal should be for that initial impression to be lasting–try an offbeat way of saying hello instead of just saying “hello.” It’s important to be distinctive if the apple of your eye receives many messages daily. Saying something that several other people have already said in their initial message makes it easy to ignore.
According to the data, the three most common ways to start a dating site message were all bad ideas.
“Hi, hey, and hello” are the three most common greetings you should never use. Almost 23% of men say “Hello” as their initial message. If you are in that group, you need to change tack immediately.
They are great for starting a conversation in person because the other person can read your emotions and body language, but they don’t really cut it when communicating over the internet.
Try something else, like the following three most common greetings, which tend to have higher response rates: “What’s up,” “Yo,” and “How’s it going” have all been shown to get more replies than the alternative “hi.” It’s an easy fix!
Asking a simple “how are you?” or “what’s up?” opens the door for a more in-depth response from the recipient. People tend to open up when asked a question; if they do, look at you! You’ve just started a conversation–now it’s up to you to keep it going.
Ask a Question in a First Message
This is the most basic advice for crafting a dating site message: ask a question to begin an interaction with a potential date.
If you’re having trouble starting chats with the suggestions above, you might also try being more specific and direct.
Go through the person’s profile to see if there’s anything that makes them unique, and use it as a jumping-off point for a discussion.
Finding shared interests is the first step in developing a romantic relationship. You might share a passion for biking, for instance. After that discovery, you can ask a question about your shared interest in biking to kick off the conversation.
Using this scenario, you could ask where they like riding their bikes in the local area, as in “Where’s your favorite spot to ride?”
Instantly, you’ll express to the person your genuine curiosity in their thoughts and feelings as well as your shared interest in the hobby at hand. From their perspective, this immediately sets a baseline of compatibility.
As most people like talking about themselves, starting out with a question about the other person is likely to get a more enthusiastic response. You could come off as self-absorbed if you immediately start discussing yourself or your preferences.
If you want to keep the conversation moving, you need something more engaging or meaningful to ask than “what’s up?”
Avoid Physical Comments and Compliments
Avoiding physical flattery has been shown to be beneficial in the long run. Although this is sound advice for anybody, men, in particular, should take note since they are more eager to bring up physical attributes at the jump.
In fact, one-third of males will remark on a woman’s beauty. Fifty-one percent of those surveyed said something generic like “you’re gorgeous,” but just 22 percent mentioned specifics like the person’s eyes or smile.
While it may seem odd, nobody enjoys being lavished with physical praise from a complete stranger. Words like “sexy,” “beautiful,” “hot,” and “cutie” do not elicit many replies, according to the data; it makes people feel uncomfortable, and frankly, it’s creepy.
It’s also possible that a message focusing only on the recipient’s appearance might send the signal that you’re just interested in having a sexual relationship with them rather than developing a deeper emotional connection with them.
It’s best to hold off on the compliments until you’ve created a firm ground in the relationship since you don’t know what this person is seeking in a partner.
Use Proper Grammar
Even if you put all the advice on dating site messaging into practice, it won’t help you if you come across as illiterate. It’s not only what you say but how you say it that counts.
What does your use of Netspeak, poor grammar, and misspelled words reveal about you? Nothing great, since they are all major turnoffs and usually give off a bad initial impression.
Poor communication skills are a major deal breaker for most daters.
The use of “ur,” “u,” and “wat” is likely to result in no responses. Some recipients may misinterpret your communication as an attempt at fraud, while others may think you’re dumb. Either outcome is not ideal for you!
Use proper spelling and capitalization, along with apostrophes, where they go, like you learned to do in elementary school.
The message you send by not utilizing good grammar and spelling is that you are too lazy to take the time to do it.
But every rule has an exception.
Although “netspeak” is often frowned upon, in this instance, humorous expressions are permitted. You can use “lol” and “haha” as much as you want, as research shows these Netspeak phrases are never frowned upon.
In written communication, there aren’t many options for indicating that you find a certain remark funny! Using “lols” and “haha’s” will make you seem more approachable and playful. You risk coming across as unpleasant if you don’t use them in your messages.
Short And Sweet Is Key
You want your initial message to be short, pleasant, and simple. Ask them about the things you find interesting in their profile and mention that you’re interested in getting to know them better.
A lengthy message with several lines or paragraphs might overwhelm and turn them off–don’t do the TMI thing!
There is a direct correlation between the amount of overwriting and the intensity of the impression given. Neither you nor the recipient of this message knows each other personally and it’s strange that you’d send such a lengthy message as your first one. Ick.
Do not be a person who overshares by rushing into spilling your life story. Before you ramble about yourself endlessly in a message, be sure the other person is really interested in hearing about you.
Make Sure Your Message Ratio Isn’t Out of Balance
Keep the number of messages you send to a minimum; otherwise, the recipient could get overwhelmed. If you don’t want to come across as insane or overly needy, stick to this simple ratio while sending messages.
The simplest way to turn someone off is to send them multiple messages without getting a response. There are several examples of online chats in which one party repeatedly sends messages without receiving a reply. That goes against all norms of messaging behavior.
After sending a message, what should you do next? This is the easiest part–you wait for them to respond.
Either be patient or look elsewhere; there are plenty of available singles who could be interested in you.
Repeated messages, whether deliberate or not, carry a hidden message: “I am a demanding creep with boundary problems.” Sending repeated messages will give the impression that you’re obsessed with tracking the recipient’s every move throughout the day, and this behavior is a major red flag.
These tips and tricks for sending better messages are meant just as pointers to help you start a conversation. Maybe some of them will benefit you, and maybe they won’t. If the person isn’t interested, it doesn’t matter how well-crafted your message is.
You can try out several approaches, but also be willing to start over with someone else who could turn out to be someone who you connect with.