Love at first swipe: online dating tips
The lack of matches. The overabundance of bad matches. The absence of engaging conversations, the gag-inducing pickup lines, the spam account requests, the cringe-worthy profiles, the awkward first dates that last forever while simultaneously going nowhere…
Tired of online dating yet? If so, we hate to be the ones to inform you, but… you might be doing e-dating wrong. Don’t worry — a lot of people make simple mistakes when it comes to online dating that hamper their chances at finding real, true love. But by making some quick adjustments to your profile and adopting a different kind of dating mindset, you can radically improve your dating life.
If you’re not already up-to-speed with the first installment of online dating tips from our blog, we’d recommend going back and reading up on those. That section covers practical advice, like choosing the right pictures or writing a killer dating app bio… this section, however, is about the bigger things: how to choose what app is right for you based on the experiences you’re looking for, how to make dating fun, and how to make the most of your time online.
In this blog, we’re going to look at that first category: practical tips for dating apps. If you’re looking for higher-level dating advice, consult our other blog on dating app advice.
Tips for dating apps
Choose the right dating app for your needs
Before you even set foot out the door for your first e-date, consider the kind of dating app, or apps, you’re using. While there are plenty of apps to choose from, not every dating app is built the same — or for the same purpose. If you’re not getting the kind of results you’re looking for, it might be time to switch up the platform you’re using for better returns.
Let’s look at the differences between three major dating apps: Hinge, Bumble and Tinder.
Hinge, the app that’s “designed to be deleted,” is custom-built to try and create lasting relationships between people. The whole goal is to get you off the app and get started on a life-altering romance. To that end, Hinge’s platform is built rather intuitively.
Unlike other apps, on Hinge, you’re allowed to re-swipe on accidental un-matches, create personality-defining voice prompts that showcase your personality, and you can only match with a finite number of people a day. In these ways, Hinge prides itself on helping its users find quality matches, instead of simply a LOT of matches. If you’re tired of wading through a sea of romantic duds, Hinge is probably the app for you.
Bumble is, in many ways, a pretty standard dating app… until you start to dig deeper into its defining features. For one, when matches occur on Bumble, girls have to message first. By putting the ball in one party’s court, Bumble emphasizes more targeted messaging, rather than allowing users to fire off a thousand copy-and-paste texts to as many matches as possible. There’s also a 24-hour time limit on sending a message, which mitigates letting matches linger in your inbox.
More than that, Bumble isn’t just for dating. It’s also got friendship and business profiles, allowing you to connect with other people for more reasons than simply love. If you’re looking for a dating app that’s well-rounded and encourages a high match-to-message conversion rate, Bumble should be your go-to.
We all know Tinder. It’s the “original” phone dating app, and that means it’s got some big benefits… and major drawbacks. Tinder practically invented the concept of swiping, which means the app is designed to get you swiping on as many people as possible as often as possible. There are swipe surges, profile boosts and other incentives that make sure you’re using the app as much as possible to meet as many people as possible.
There are, of course, upsides to this. If you’re not looking for anything serious, it can be helpful to match with a lot of people and test the waters with each of them. If you’re looking for casual intimacy, Tinder is also good — it’s got a reputation for being a hookup app, after all (and there’s nothing wrong with that!).
On the downside, the amount of matches and swiping involved with Tinder can create dating app fatigue. With so many profiles to wade through, you might not find “the one” on an app like Tinder.
Choose your dating app wisely
Of course, there are far more apps these days than the “big three.” There are apps for same-sex-only couples, apps designed just for hookups, celebrity dating apps… the list goes on. It’s also not a crime to download multiple apps at the same time. The point is, you want to pick an app that really feels right for you. Otherwise, you might just be wasting your time online.
Make it your mission to feel good (instead of to find love)
This next tip has everything to do with your approach to dating. If you’re finding yourself frustrated by your lack of ability to find love on a dating app, it’s time to push the brakes a bit and pull back. Here’s what we’d advise:
Instead of looking for love, make it your mission to feel good. What does that mean? Instead of putting all your attention on a potential partner, try focusing on having a great time. Are you enjoying the conversations you’re having online? Are the dates you’re going on fun? Do you like having the opportunity to go out and meet new people?
If so, great! That’s the goal, after all. Think of a dating app as an extension of your social life. If you get to meet new people, have experiences and find new ways to enjoy life, then you’re succeeding at your goal of feeling good.
Why do we suggest this? Because turning romance into a chore is the easiest way to give up on dating apps altogether. Don’t get down in the dumps just because love hasn’t found you yet. Instead, consider how much more likely you’ll be to find love if your primary goal is to love every moment of your life.
Embrace the thrill of uncertainty
With dating apps, you simply don’t know what’s going to happen next. Is the date going to be amazing? Terrible? Will the person who’s interesting online be a snooze-fest when you meet them in person? Or will it be the other way around, where they’re dull over text, but great face-to-face?
All of these aspects create uncertainty, and it can make a lot of people anxious. While that’s a natural reaction to have, consider this: romance is all about uncertainty. What makes for great sexual tension? A touch of mystery. What makes a new person so fascinating? The fact that you don’t know them front-to-back just yet. And what makes a date special? The fact that you’ve never had one quite like it before.
We’re here to tell you that it’s okay to lean into the uncertainty of dating a little bit. Doing so can make for a radically better time than if you close yourself off from the thrill of mystery in favor of another night in.
Try taking some of your thoughts on dating elsewhere
We’re all on our phones a lot these days. While that’s great for many things, it can be hard to hold all your thoughts about dating on a SINGLE app. How do you compare the pros and cons of the people you’re seeing if you don’t have space to write those pros and cons down? How do you write out a list of all the qualities you’re looking for in a partner in the confines of a dating app? You could try the Notes section of your iPhone, but…
We’ve got a better idea. Ever kept a journal? From your romantic pursuits to your professional life, journaling is a powerful tool for reflecting on your life. What’s more, people who journal report higher levels of life satisfaction and lower levels of stress than people who don’t.
If you’re having a tough time with dating online, it might be time to pick up a journal and start cataloguing your experiences. What did you like about your last date? What didn’t you like? Do you have any dealbreakers that you simply can’t stand in a partner? And what would an “ideal” relationship look like to you?
Answering questions like these in your journal can help you think more deeply about your e-dating experience… and while it won’t solve all your problems, journaling can certainly provide a better perspective on dating than swiping, praying to the void for luck and closing your phone.
Dating doesn’t have to be complicated
Interested in personalized advice when it comes to tips for dating apps? We’re here to help. Get in touch with us for more dating tip do’s and don’ts, as well as ways to take journaling to the next level for the best possible results.