How To Choose a Dating Service
There are so many dating sites out there, hundreds if not thousands, how do you even begin to decide where to register and start your online dating experience?
You could just pick one at random, create a profile, and sit back and wait for the other members to beat a path to your email inbox. Who knows, you could get lucky and it might work out first time. But even a tiny bit of investigation beforehand could save a lot of time and frustration!
The trick is to be prepared. You probably wouldn't go off to buy a new car and start by trawling around dealerships at random, you would already have an idea as to what sort of car you want 'how big, how fast, how much money you had to spend, and so forth. Based on these criteria you would have a good idea of which car showrooms to visit to find the right sort of vehicle for your particular needs. So the first question to ask yourself, is what do you want out of a dating site? Sounds obvious 'a date! But what sort of date? Are you looking for a serious relationship possibly leading to marriage? Or are you after a casual partner and you'll see where it leads? Or perhaps you just want some uncomplicated fun. The good news is that among the myriad of services out there on the web, there is something to cater for every requirement. Some sites will suit all tastes, but there are many that specialise, and the more specific you are about what you want, the better your chances of finding it.
Before looking at the sites on offer, think about how you will write your personal profile. Jot down a paragraph or two about yourself, your interests, and your hopes for a partner. Then write a few words about what you are looking for in a potential dating match. Doing this offline will help you structure in your own mind what sort of date you are looking for, and then when you go and look at some dating sites, you'll easily be able to pick out those that offer the best chance of providing what you want. The added benefit of course is that when it comes to filling in your profile online, you will be prepared and wont be sat in front of your screen lost for words. Instead your profile will read in a very natural and honest way.
I would always recommend choosing at least two sites to register with and put your profile on, after all, they are almost all free to start with 'you only need decide if you want to pay when and if someone of interest turns up and you want to make contact.
Websites like The Dating WebReview can also save you time. The reviews will quickly give you an idea about the services each dating site offers, and whether they specialise.
Choosing an internet dating site isn't difficult. In the end it comes down to finding one that you enjoy using. After all, if it appeals to your taste, then you already have something in common with the other members.
Sara Blackmoore is a relationship counselor and regular website contributor. She lives in London, England with her husband and two children.