By Christopher T “Kit” Smith
After deciding to enter into the world of Internet dating, there are some simple steps you can take that will make your journey much easier and your experiences more pleasant. Most likely, your first big decision will be which dating website(s) to choose along with trying to determine which site(s) you think will offer you the best chance for success. While there are a multitude of options, ranging from “general” sites with millions of users/members/subscribers to very specialized sites that cater to a select group of people, finding the one(s) that will suit your needs and desires really isn’t as difficult as it might appear. There are a variety of ranking/rating services that provide good information you can use to aid in your choices. Many of these will include reviews from actual users of dating sites that you may want to consider.
I have enjoyed conversations with many other users of Internet dating sites. They have provided me with a lot of valuable feedback and information. At the same time, they also have a wide range of opinions. For example, when discussing any particular site there is seldom a consensus. Each person’s experiences and opinions vary widely. Many will claim a particular dating site offers them the best user experiences and matches, while others completely “trash” the very same site. These conversations have led me to believe there really isn’t a “best” choice, nor is there any choice you could consider to be right or wrong. One of the many great things about Internet dating sites is their variety gives us so many options. Each of us can truly decide on our own what we think is the best and we have many alternative choices should we become dissatisfied with any particular site, for whatever reason.
Behind the scenes, there is a “business” side to Internet dating sites that is worth keeping in mind. The competition between them is similar to that of restaurant chains, automobiles, insurance, soft drinks, etc. As with any other type of business, that competition makes them look for ways to improve and upgrade their services. Their main goal is to provide you with the most pleasant user experience, along with offering you what they believe is your best chance for success. In this type of environment, it’s the “customer” who will always benefit.
The Internet dating sites in today’s hi-tech world encourage you to focus on what you consider to be your most important criteria for finding that person of your dreams. They provide us with search tools that enable us to describe in almost minute detail the type of person we feel will best suit our needs and desires. By the same token, we are given the opportunity to provide detailed information about ourselves, making it easier for a prospective match to find us. Many of the sites offer excellent customer service. For instance, they can help you enhance, modify, or even create your written profile, along with methods for how to best display your pictures.
Here are my recommendations and some simple steps you can take to make the journey less difficult and the process more enjoyable:
1 – You don’t need to waste a lot of time searching for the “best” Internet dating site. There are a multitude of Internet dating sites that all promise to be exactly what you need and the number continues to grow. What site(s) seems to work best for someone else may not be what works best for you.
2 – Choose one of the “larger” sites as a place to start. In this case, larger refers to the number of registered users/members/subscribers. Sites like these will give you the opportunity to view the most profiles and have your profile be seen by the most people. They also allow you to create search criteria that can be narrowed down quite a bit and still provide a large number of “prospects”.
3 – You may want to consider one of the “niche” dating sites. If you’ve concluded there is an important part of your life that you want your next partner to share with you, then sites like these may be one of your many options. These types of sites are available and cater to people who have specific needs, interests, beliefs, occupations, or activities. There is quite a variety of these types of sites and their numbers also continue to grow. Keep in mind these sites are smaller and have fewer numbers of users which means you may have less prospects.
4 – Utilizing multiple sites is perfectly acceptable. In fact, I encourage you to use multiple sites. The sole purpose of Internet dating sites is finding that one special person. Using multiple sites is just one simple way of maximizing your possibilities for success.
5 – Pay or free? This is a question I am asked as often as any other. In my experiences and conversations with other users, this is also a subject that does not have a consensus opinion. Many will claim they get better matches on “pay” sites, while others say their profile on “free” sites gets more responses. I have heard opinions that with pay sites there are less ”games” being played. Others will say, “Why pay for anything that you can get for free”? I have come to the conclusion that neither type of site offers a clear-cut advantage over the other and in no way will be the determining factor in your success.
6 – Most of all, have FUN! Internet dating sites offer everyone the opportunity for a wonderful “adventure”. I am grateful for the chance to meet new people and create friendships and relationships that I would not have been able to do, otherwise. I wake up each morning with the thought that today could be the first day of the rest of my life!
“I look forward to reading and responding to all of your remarks, comments, and questions. I truly enjoy helping people and hope you will share your experiences. Meeting someone new and dating should be an exhilarating, enjoyable, pleasant experience and a lot of fun!”
A bit more about Christopher…
Christopher T. Smith is an online dating consultant and the author of Let’s Meet Our Match – Your Complete Guide to Success in the World of Internet Dating. His book shares many of the experiences he has had as an actual user of Internet dating sites. His valuable expertise and advice has helped many people overcome the difficulties of online dating to have a more pleasant, happier, and stress-free experience. To learn more about Christopher and the book, you can visit his website: LetsMeetOurMatch.