Online dating sites: how to create a profile to attract the right person

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Your dating profile is the digital equivalent to seeing a gorgeous stranger across the room. First impressions are everything! Here are five guiding principles to writing an authentic profile that will attract your type of person.


Be clear

Don’t put yourself out there saying you’d be up for a fling if all you really want is a long-term relationship. And don’t say you’re simply after companionship if you’re craving something more physical. Those scenarios will only end in unnecessary heartache. Be transparent about what you are wanting from meeting someone.


Be honest. (But not too honest!)

It’s good to be upfront about any deal breakers, for example, if you’re highly allergic to cats you don’t want to meet up with a man who has a houseful of them. Beyond those life-or-death items, ‘honesty’ can veer off into the dangerous territories of over sharing and negativity.

Over sharing is a turn-off for most people and can come across online as a little ‘not quite right’. Nobody needs to know right now if your heart medication isn’t agreeing with your digestive system. Leave those gems for when you get to know somebody in real life.

Making blanket statements such as “I only want a man over 6ft tall” will sound demanding and picky. And imagine if the love of your life was out there, but he’s 5ft 11in and didn’t respond to your profile because he knew he didn’t meet your exacting criteria! It’d be a travesty!


Avoid clichés

In the big sea of online dating, you want to come across as unique, not like everyone else. So analyse what you’re writing and consider if it’s actually true or just lazy writing. Are you really obsessed with “long walks in the countryside” or did it just sound like the right thing to say? So you “love to laugh”? Um, doesn’t everyone? And unless you’re super into astrology, leave your star sign out of your profile. The hard truth is it’s more likely to induce eye rolling than an email response.


Be specific

So you love to travel? Travelling is almost as popular an activity as breathing and sleeping, so enlighten your reader with a little more detail. Where are some of your favourite places to travel to? You love food? So do most of us, but that doesn’t give much of an insight into who you are as a person. What are your favourite restaurants or types of cuisine? You’re into sport? What, all of them? List the ones you love to participate in or watch the most.

If you communicate exactly what you love to do, you’ll be more likely to make a perfect match, more quickly. If you’re a laidback homebody, you don’t want to say anything in your profile that might attract a potential partner who yearns to be out of bed at 6am on a 5km job. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

If you have niche hobbies, make references that only other people who are into it will get. If you get a response from someone who is obviously in the know, at the very least you’ll know you’re on the same wavelength with at least one passion.


Show and tell

As much as we might wish otherwise, looks are king in the world of online dating. Your photos are actually your most important assets. Sure you want them to make you look as attractive as possible, but most importantly they should also be realistic. You want to draw in people who are attracted to you right now, not the you from three years ago!

And while you’re busy choosing your photos, make sure you smile! The ‘trout pout’ may still be popular in profile pictures, but studies have shown that more than anything else, people want to see photos on dating sites where people have a grin plastered on their faces, not a try-hard coy shot where they’re angled away from the camera and looking pouty.

The more photos the better too! Use action shots where you’re engaging in your favourite activities, and make sure you include at least one full-length photo so you can be confident that you’ve revealed yourself fully before any potential date.

When you sit down to write your dating profile, think about what turns you off when you read other people’s (arrogance? making lewd or suggestive comments? bad spelling and grammar?) and make sure you’re avoiding those traps.

Remember to have some fun with this new world of dating. Write your profile with confidence, and add some humour. And most importantly, make sure you’ve chosen the right dating site for you!

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