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The Rules for Online Dating in 2017

posted: 04/05/17
by: Katie Morton
online dating
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If you're currently single, online dating is an increasingly popular way to find a partner. According to Match's Singles in American Study, "more than 53 percent of single people created a dating profile...and more than 40 percent of singles have dated someone they met online."

Dating online is a mix of using some common sense, having patience, and a willingness to have some fun. Here are the new rules to e-romance in 2017.

1. Safety First!

Remember that when you're meeting someone for the very first time, you should always keep safety in mind. Share your date plans, location, and your date's contact info with a trusted friend or family member.

It's always best to have your first dates in a public place, rather than going to a stranger's home. If things go south once you arrive, have a pre-planned ready to go. Remember: If your gut tells you something is off, then end the date and leave--there's no point in continuing any interaction that makes you uncomfortable.

2. Maintain Privacy Boundaries

When you're initially meeting someone, it's important to maintain a level of privacy. Experts say to be cautious about giving out your home phone number or your home or work address until you really know someone. One tip is to create a separate email and phone number with Google; it's easy to change these accounts if someone won't leave you alone.

3. Online Dating is More Commonplace

Forget the stigma of meeting online. Statistics show that online dating is now more accepted than ever. Moreover, naysayers claim that online dating would never result in a serious relationship. However, according to the Pew Research Center, as many as five percent of current marriages started online. Sounds like better odds than sitting at your local bar waiting for someone to make eye contact.

4. Attractiveness Isn't Everything

Humans are visual beings, and there's no denying that a physically attractive profile photo will garner attention. That said, we're not all cover models--nor do we need to be to get an online date!

According to Christian Rudder, co-founder of OkCupid, personality is also a turn-on. "The more of your personality you show, the more there is for someone to grab onto and get excited about...describe yourself in as much quirky detail as possible," explains Rudder. Don't be afraid to share the real you online, you may find your perfect match!

5. Women AND Men Can Make the First Move

Forget the rules your Grandma told you about how men always ask out the ladies. Toss out the antiquated notion that only the guy should make the first move. In today's modern dating scene, women should feel empowered to ask out a guy that they like. On an online dating site, you can send a quick message or like a profile to indicate interest.

Paying is for men? Not anymore--the same equality rules apply to whipping out your credit card when the check arrives. Modern women can pick up the tab; so don't shy away from making the offer.

6. Find Your Niche

Just a few years ago, there were limited options in the world of online dating. The first generation of dating sites, such as Match and eHarmony, catered to everyone. Today's modern e-dating scene is far different--there's now a niche for every unique interest.

There are sites that cater to those who love the farming life, those who are science fiction fans, and those who are deeply faithful. Find your like-minded, ideal partner by delving into these unique sites. By searching for a match using a niche app, you're more likely to pair with someone who already shares the same interests and values.

Millions of people are online looking for their perfect match. Don't be afraid to toss your proverbial hat (and heart) into the online dating ring. Your next great love story may be waiting to meet you!