Creating an online dating profile can seem hard at first but it’s really all about introducing yourself to people in a way that makes them want to learn more. You may feel pressure to write a lot or to be the wittiest person on the site or app you’re on, but the truth is that some of the best online dating profiles are the simplest, and some of the best online dating profile tips aren’t that hard to follow.
I’ve worked at the online dating site and app Zoosk for over five years now and during that time I’ve seen a lot of profiles and learned a lot about what does and doesn’t work. To help you take your dating profile to the next level and to make sure you start chatting with and meeting more people, there are a few simple things you can do right away that can have a big impact.
Here are 11 online dating profile tips to help you turn your normal dating profile into something amazing:
1. Don’t leave anything blank.
A big mistake a lot of people make while putting their profile together, is not taking advantage of all the tools they have to show who they are. If the dating site you’re on let’s you create a username, do it. If you can verify your profile using you phone number, Facebook account, or email, do that too. If you can have up to seven photos, then use all seven. Data has shown time and time again, that the more you put into your profile, the more you’ll see back.
When you look at the stats from Zoosk, you can actually see that people get more incoming messages the more they fill out. For example, adding a username can get you up to 20% more incoming messages, writing a description about yourself gets you up to 28% more incoming messages, and verifying your photos can get you up to 100% more incoming messages. All of that can really add up.
2. Be honest. People LOVE it.
When asked what they’re looking for in another person, the number one thing people across the board are looking for is someone who’s honest. In fact, honest is the word that people on Zoosk mention the most when describing their perfect match. When you’re online dating you may be tempted to stretch the truth a bit to present yourself in the best light, but the majority of people prefer honesty and openness instead of someone who tries to be something their not.
“Be open and honest about who are and what you want,” explained one Zoosk member. “It’s natural to want to be friendly and accepted, but it’s more important to be who you are and not mold yourself into the person that you think your love interest wants.”
3. Don’t hide your face in your profile photo.
When it comes to choosing your profile photo, people want to see you and get a sense of who you are. Your photos are a part of that, and anything that makes it harder to see your face or tell who you are can be confusing. If you hide behind sunglasses and a hat, use a group photo so people can’t tell which person you are, or use a blurry photo that makes it hard to see you, people may just pass you by.
What people do like are things like adding a full body photo (adding one can get you up to 203% more incoming messages than the average) and seeing your smile (46% of women say a smile is the number one physical feature that draws them to someone). So don’t forget to show off a little!
4. Make it easy for people to talk to you.
One of the main functions of an online dating profile, is helping people come up with ways to start a conversation with you. Often after you’ve matched with someone, they’ll check out your profile to try and come up with something to say. If you have very little information, or don’t have anything someone could form a question about, they might just be at a loss for words. So here’s a good cheat—give them a question to ask. Do you love books? Add “Ask me what I’m reading” to the end of your profile. Do you love good BBQ? Add something like “Bet you can’t guess my favorite BBQ in town.”
5. Have a mix of photos.
I know it’s tempting to just choose the five photos you look best in, but if those five photos are all selfies, or are all pictures of you hiking, or are all pictures that look pretty much the same then you aren’t doing yourself justice. Your photos shouldn’t only show how you look, they should show who you are. It’s always good to have one main head-shot, but also use a full body photo followed up by photos of you doing things you enjoy and photos of you in different settings.
After looking into online dating data, here are some types of photos that can actually can help you get more incoming messages:
– People with a full-body photos get 203% more incoming messages
– People with a sports outfit (like a jersey) get 32% more message
– People with an outdoors photo get 19% more messages
– People who have a vacation/travel photo get 6% more messages
6. Don’t write a novel.
Back in the day, online dating profiles read almost like a resume, and you would say everything about yourself as if you were writing a cover letter. But now the dynamics of online dating have changed and writing a short paragraph is enough. Your profile should give an idea of who you are, but not give everything away at once. Give people a reason to message you to learn more.
7. Feel free to talk about your kids.
A lot of the old dating taboos, like not bringing up your kids too soon, don’t apply when it comes to online dating. On Zoosk, people who mention that they have kids in their profile actually get 13% more messages than those without.
8. Add details.
If you want to help someone get a sense of who you are, details are where your profile can really come alive. Instead of saying you love hiking, tell people your favorite hike. Instead of saying you like movies, tell them your favorite movie, or better yet, add one of your favorite movie quotes and see if they can guess where it’s from.
9. Don’t talk about dating.
One thing I’ve noticed a lot of people doing more recently, is talking about dating itself or online dating in their profile—and usually they do it in a negative way. Saying something like, “None of the other dating apps have worked so now I’m here,” or “I hate dating but want to meet someone,” or even, “Not interested in talking back and forth forever before meeting up,” may sound lighthearted when you’re chatting it up with your friends in person, but often comes across as negative when you’re reading a profile.
Instead, focus on what you are looking for or the type of person you’d like to meet. Saying things like “Looking for someone to pick movies out with on Friday nights,” or “I have a dark sense of humor. If you do too, that’d be great,” or even, “I love chatting but am interested in meeting up too,” can be a lot more inviting.
10. Get a little romantic.
A dating profile is one of places you can really lay on the charm if you want, so if you’re the type of person who’s into romance don’t be afraid to talk about it. It might seem a bit cheesy to say you’re looking for someone you can watch rainstorms with, but the truth is, a lot of people eat it up.
After looking into online dating data, here are some romantic phrases you can add to your profile to get more incoming messages:
– Mentioning romance or romantic can get you up to 41% more incoming messages.
– Mentioning hopeless romantic can get you up to 38% more incoming messages.
– Mentioning that you’re old-fashioned can get you up to 16% more incoming messages.
11. Be your wonderful, weird self.
Some of the dating profiles that stand out the most are the ones where someone’s personality and what really makes them different shines through… and sometimes, well sometimes it can get a little weird. Whether you love grandma sweaters, tell corny dad jokes, or have read ever Harry Potter book over ten times, let people know. The oddball things about you, are what makes you who you are.
When it comes to online dating, it’s all about putting your most authentic self out there and finding the person who’s interested and into you. You never know what’s going to spark someone’s interest and make them say yes to matching up… It could be that photo of you reading “Howl” by a campfire, how you admitted you love Bill Murray movies, the obscure Calvin and Hobbes quote you added, or a photo of you on vacation in Disneyland with your kids. The same types of little, silly things that can catch your eye when you meet someone in person, can get someone’s attention online too. You just have to be yourself and be open to what comes your way.