The Ultimate Online Dating Guides

Wed 13 February 2013 14:55, Vitto Christaldi

Valentine's Day is approaching! Have you found your dream guy or dream lady yet? Or you are still searching for 'The One'? Have you ever considered going on online dating sites? No, online dating is not a weird thing at all, especially in the digital era. According to a study released in the journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest last year, online dating has become the second most common way for couples to meet. The study also revealed that 22 per cent of heterosexual couples and 61 per cent of same-sex couples had found their partners through the internet. So today, I will be your ‘digital cupid’; I will give you tips to find your true love through online dating sites!

The Ultimate Online Dating Guides

Which online dating site?

There are more than 9 million dating sites available in the web world. In order to find the suitable site, you first need to know what you are looking for. Most dating sites have their niche; some sites are focused on only men/women, some are specifically intended for LGBT, some sites are regional-based, and some are even more specific than that (e.g. UniformDating: a dating site for anyone who works in uniform or likes those who do).

According to Google Zeitgeist, the ten most popular dating sites of 2012 are: 

  1. PlentyOfFish
  2. Match
  3. OkCupid
  4. eHarmony
  5. DateHookup
  6. Zoosk
  7. Christian Mingle
  8. AdultFriendFinder
  9. Jdate
  10. SinglesNet

Most of the sites mentioned above are, in my opinion, quite general - they don’t really have a niche - with the exception for Christian Mingle (yes, it is a dating site for single Christians), Jdate (a special dating site for Jewish singles), and AdultFriendFinder (a dating site specifically to find a sex partner); but yet popular. Yet, you will have a bigger chance in finding your loved one in one of these websites because of their high popularity.

Plenty%20of%20fish

Plenty of Fish dating site

Next to hetero-dating-sites, I also have a list of dating sites for single gay and lesbians out there. The top 7 websites for single LGBTs according to Heidi Lee Munson, a dating coach and an expert partner on YourTango, are:

  1. OkCupid
  2. Chemistry
  3. Match
  4. Compatible Partners
  5. Senior People Meet
  6. Perfect Match
  7. Pinkcupid.com and Gaydating.com

Most of the websites above, unlike other hetero sites, offer privacy and discretion; some even offer anonymity (for gay and lesbians who have not “come out of the closet”).

Compatible%20partners

Compatible Partners dating site for LGBT

Lastly, as I have mentioned before, there are some websites that offer specific criteria. Here is the list of niche dating sites, mostly based on what I found on BusinessInsider:

  • Millionaire Match - A dating site for those who are looking to marry a millionaire
  • FarmersOnly.com - A dating site for farmers
  • Ashley Madison - A dating site for people looking to have affairs
  • The Big & The Beautiful - A dating site for beautiful plus-sized-people
  • Beautiful People – A dating site specially for “good looking people”
  • Veggie Date – A dating site for vegetarians looking for other vegetarians
  • GetRussianWife.com – A dating site for men who are looking for a wife from Russia or Ukraine
  • Alikewise – A dating site based on book taste
  • Geek2Geek – A dating site for geeks/nerds
  • The Atlasphere – For the admirers of the novels by Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged
  • SeekingArrangement – A dating site for “sugar daddies” who are looking for “sugar babes”
  • UniformDating - For anyone who works in uniform or likes those who do
  • Cupidtino – For apple lovers (not the fruit, but Apple.inc’s products)
Ashley%20madison

Ashley Madison, a niche dating site for people who are looking to have affairs

As mentioned before, in order to find the right dating site, you first need to know what you are looking for. You must determine what kind of relationship you are looking for before visiting any dating sites. Another tip, find a dating site that is popular in the country you live in (better for distance-wise, language-wise, and culture-wise). If you live in the UK for example, you should visit Match.com and My Single Friend according to Telegraph UK.

 

Dating-apps

Dating%20head

From online-dating, we move to mobile-dating. Nowadays we have plenty of app developers offering a dating service for mobile users. These applications are targeted for everyone, no matter what gender or sexual orientation of the users; and most importantly, they are usually free to use. Here is the list of the top dating-apps for iPhone according to Business Insider:

  1. Skout
  2. This app has been featured on ABC News, CNN, FOX News, and NY Times. It offers proximitypreferences for meeting people, with features such as: live chats, gifts, wink, ‘who checked you out’, updates from nearby users, and saving favorite users. Skout and Boyahoy are sister apps, however Boyahoy is designed for gay chat.
  3. OkCupid
  4. The app is based on the dating site called okcupid.com. The dating service is for everyone, no sexual orientation prohibited. The app allows users to modify their profile, chat, update status, upload photos, and search for nearby users in their area.
  5. Plenty of Fish (POF)
  6. Plenty of Fish is one of the biggest dating sites in the world, with 38 million users. The POF app allow users to edit profile, flirt, send message, search nearby, upload image, review matches, and track who viewed your profile.
  7. Blendr
  8. Blendr is well known for its ‘heat map’ which allows users to see the ‘hot spot’ nearby. Users can find soulmates based on mutual interests. It also integrates with Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare.
  9. Grindr
  10. In short, the LGBT version of Blendr.
Skout

Skout dating-app

For Android users, here are the top dating-apps for your operating system according to International Business Times:

  1. OkCupid
  2. Plenty of Fish (POF)
  3. Crazy Blind Date
  4. As I quoted from the International Business Time, “Crazy Blind Date is a dating app that describes blind date in a really crazy way. Setting up a blind date with this app will ask when do you want to go and where you would like to go then it does the job by matching the user randomly to many singles in that location. Because it is random, the matches are displayed in pixilated images in keeping with the true sense of a blind date”.
  5. Tagged
  6. Tagged-app is based on the popular dating site, Tagged.com. It offers similar services like other dating apps, but the most famous feature from is Tagged Pets, a popular meeting game.
  7. Skout

 

Okcupid-Android-app

OKCupid dating-app

 

Dos and Don’ts

  • Don’t be a catfish!
  • Have you seen the MTV reality show Catfish? According to Urban Dictionary, Catfish means “someone who pretends to be someone they’re not using Facebook or other social media to create false identities, particularly to pursue deceptive online romances.” – DON’T! Be honest! And for those who are really looking for true love, before you waste your time (or even money) on the wrong person, make sure you find out about that person to the last little detail; and always be on your guard! Do not tell/show private stuff before you are 100% sure about the identity of the person.
  • Take standout photos
  • As suggested by Mashable, it is important to take a profile picture that stands out because “you are being judged more harshly on your online image than you would be in person”. Dating site users are suggested to wear a color that will stand out when people are scanning profiles, but yet honest. For tips for better online photos, click here.
  • Get some outsiders' opinions
  • Consult your friends and family for help in writing your online profile. There are things that they love about you that you might not otherwise think about for yourself. There are also tools to help you in writing descriptions about yourself. Also, ask a friend of the gender and sexual orientation you’re attracted to for feedback. 
  • Be straightforward
  • Laurie Davis, author of ‘Love at First Click: The Ultimate Guide to Online Dating’, suggested to break the descriptions about yourself in two paragraphs, one paragraph about what you’re looking for. "You want it to take under two minutes to view photos and read your profile" she wrote. Also, don’t use clichés! As Dr. Phil said, “you may love long walks on the beach, but who doesn't? Say something interesting about yourself that is unique to you!
  • Be Safe
  • As mentioned on Dr. Phil.com, in order to be safe, always verify information from the potential match, make a separate e-mail account for online dating activities, do not list phone numbers or addresses, and never give more than a first name!

  • Comments (8)
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Comments (8)

 

  • Yes, it's true, Valentine's Day with every year became more and more popular among people worldwide, even in my country (Russia).
    Thank you, Vitto, for Dos and Don'ts tips. It is really helpful information for best datting and success.

    Ma 18 feb 2013, 09:19


    • Huri Sosa

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    Of course we should also suggest http://avatr.me to meet sexy Mexican girls... if you are interested of course haha

    Zo 3 mrt 2013, 01:23


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