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Online Dating Mistakes to Avoid

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Online dating is immensely popular and most people I know have tried out at least a couple of dating sites. But surprisingly, most people who date online just wing it, without approaching dating in a more well-planned manner. At the very least, you should read some tips on dating and know some of the most common pitfalls. Here are some online dating mistakes you should try to avoid:

1. Don't place too much emphasis on pics.
Most people who date online tend to make snap judgments based on pictures. It's hard to avoid doing this because it's one of the first things you'll notice about a profile. But you should try to make your decisions based on more comprehensive information. Read the entire profile, evaluate their personality traits, and look at all the pictures before deciding whether or not you want to move along to the next profile. Also, be aware that some people may not look that great in photos but end up being quite attractive to you when you meet them in person.

2. Reserve ultimate judgment until you actually meet.
There is a difference between online and offline chemistry. Sometimes, a person you hit it off with terrifically online may not be that interesting to you once you meet. On the other hand, someone who seems a bit dull in online communications could end up being very appealing to you in person. It's best to therefore view the profile as a starting point, and understand that the information you get from the picture is invariably going to paint an incomplete picture.

3. Draw conclusions about personality based on what you observe, not on what someone claims.
People on dating sites often make claims such as "I have a great sense of humor." Such claims may reflect what someone thinks about themselves, but they are not necessarily based on reality. Even if someone does not claim to have a good sense of humor, if they say things that are funny, you'll know that they do. Therefore, it's best not to give much credence to the personality claims people make.

4. Don't place too much emphasis on small things.
Nobody is going to be exactly everything you're looking for. So don't eliminate people just because there is one or two small things that don't line up with what you want in a partner. Instead, look at the whole picture and start conversing if there are enough big things that you have in common.

While it's important to read as much as possible about online dating before starting, at some point, you need to learn by doing. One thing you can do is obtain a 3-day free trial from and check out online dating for a few days. This will give you some idea of what online dating is like before you have to purchase a membership.

Many dating sites offer a free trial you can use, but I think it's best to get started with a popular site like, since such sites have a lot of activity.