While going out to bars and clubs, joining activities, and attending speed dating events are still wonderful ways to meet someone, a majority of people augment those experiences with online dating apps or websites. Tinder, OkCupid, eHarmony, Match; everyone has a friend or relative that met someone through online dating.

Perhaps their success stories encouraged you to register and fill out your own profile. If you’re new to online dating though, you may get nervous about sending messages. After all, it’s easy for your inbox to get inundated with people sending drivel like “hi,” “what’s up?,” or “how’s your week?” These aren’t really the kind of getting-to-know you questions that can lead to a great date.

If you want to chat with a member on a dating site a bit before deciding if you want to exchange numbers and go on a date, you have to ask good questions. If you’re feeling nervous, just comb their profile and look for talking points. You may have several television shows, movies, and bands in common, or perhaps you both like going to the same restaurant. Ask about any of these topics to get the ball rolling.

Most dating sites have an area for members to list their occupation. This isn’t always detailed, so get curious about their job. Rather than just asking what they do for a living, query them on how long they’ve been doing it and what made them choose that field in the first place. Just make sure not to ask how much money they make, since that’s an invasive question that’s likely to offend.

If someone has traveled, they will surely have pictures on their profile showing off. Even if you haven’t been to that state or country, ask them all about it. They’re probably very excited to share that information with you.

Lastly, although it may seem a little soon, ask a little about romance and relationships. Quiz them on why they’re on the site and what they’re looking for. After all, if you’re really hitting it off with someone but they only want sex and you’re seeking a long-term relationship, it’s better to know now before you go out on a date.

Speaking of sex, you may want to avoid talking about it so early on. It does give off the impression that you’re only interested in sleeping with people. If that is why you’re on a dating site, then only seek out people with the same interests.

While you should get into a good conversation with a love interest, don’t just keep messaging for weeks. After a few days of chatting, suggest continuing the conversation in person. You don’t want to exhaust all topics when you two message and then have nothing to talk about on the date. Leave some mystery and expand upon your hobbies and passions when you’re on the date and they can see your eyes light up and vice-versa. 


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