We all know that dating can be tricky, particularly if you’re recently out of a relationship and are now back in the dating pool.
If you’ve matched online or on an app with someone you quite like the look of, congratulations. But as you know, matching is just the first step. Then comes the awkward stage where you both wait for the other person to start a conversation.
In a world obsessed with looks, having a few great online dating conversation starters up your sleeve will help you stand out from the competition.
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It can be difficult to know how to start a conversation with a match, but hesitating is not the answer. Waiting longer than 6 hours to message a man means he’s 25% less likely to respond, while for women it drops 5% (dropping sharply as time goes on).
We’ve got the best conversation starters to improve your response rate. Read on to upgrade your love life.
Online Dating Conversation Starters That Work
If you tend to start a conversation with “Hey”, or “What’s up”, you’re not doing yourself any favors. According to a study by Hinge, these openers only have an average response rate, and they don’t show much imagination.
Instead, use these types of online dating conversation starters:
Consider Their Age
If you know the age of the person you’re messaging, that information can be helpful when you’re planning your first message. Matches respond differently to openers depending on their age.
People between the ages of 18-23 like questions that are unique or surprising, such as: “Pain reliever personality: Tylenol, Advil, or complaining?”
People between the ages of 24 and 28 like lifestyle-related questions. Ask whether they enjoy sleep, exercise or mimosas on a Sunday. Another good option is to ask them to choose between an adventure like scuba diving or rock climbing.
Those between the ages of 29 and 35 like to get a little personal. Ask to play a game like two truths and a lie, or “Have you ever?”
If you’re talking to someone who is 35+, pop culture is a good choice. Ask them to choose between two movies or pop stars and see what happens.
Funny online dating conversation starters get lots of responses since most people enjoy having a laugh. Women are more likely to respond to a humorous message, and science has proven that women value humor when looking for a man.
Of course, guys are also more likely to respond if a woman makes them laugh. Send a GIF that will attract their attention and a humorous message to follow up. Start with a knock-knock joke, or tell them a funny story.
For women, it can be a good idea to find some common ground based on their profile. Pick something from one of his photos and lightly make fun of him for it. Is that really his dog, or is he borrowing it in an attempt to attract women? Was it necessary for him to have his shirt off at that party?
This creates intimacy and also allows you to see if he can actually take a joke.
Get to the Point
This works especially well for guys. We all know that men are usually the more straightforward sex, which is why they’re 98% more likely to respond to an invitation.
Consider “Drinks soon?” or “Free this week?” If you’re using an app like Tinder, you already know the other person finds you attractive since they had to match with you.
Talk About the Future
This can be a way to involve some humor as well. A simple question like “So, two kids, or three?” can get a laugh and show you’re serious about meeting someone.
Many people use dating apps and websites only for hookups. For people who are serious about finding a partner, it can be annoying to only get messages from people looking for a fling.
Demonstrating that you’re looking for something a little more serious (even as part of a joke) can help you stand out from all the other people sending messages like “You’re hot,” and “Hey sexy.”
Give a Compliment
Everyone likes a nice compliment, but it’s important to be careful here. Avoid mentioning the other person’s appearance as it can come off as creepy. You should only tell someone they’re beautiful/hot/gorgeous should after you’ve actually met them in person and got the “ok” signals.
Instead, focus on complimenting aspects of their personality. If you notice in their photos that they’re doing something cool like bungy jumping, running a marathon, or skydiving, this can be used as one of your online dating conversation starters:
“Wow, I’ve never been bungee jumping before, how was it?”
“You’re so brave, good on you for skydiving!”
“Running a marathon is impressive, I’d love to train for one one day.”
You may read in their profile that they have a particular interest or achievement. Maybe they work in an interesting field or have a unique dream. Mentioning this in the form of a (playful) compliment can break the ice and show you pay attention.
Don’t Overthink it
It can be tempting to mentally type out five different messages and then list the pros and cons of each one. But these days, online dating is a numbers game.
Keep it simple, be interesting, and if you don’t get a reply, move onto the next person.
And One More Tip…
Check your message before you send it. Make sure you’ve spelled the person’s name correctly if you’ve used it. Look for grammatical errors or spelling mistakes. You don’t need to be Shakespeare, but you also need to make a good first impression.
These days, we’re all constantly glued to our smartphones and meeting people through technology has become the norm. But it can be hard to stand out to the opposite (or same) sex if you don’t have any good online dating conversation starters.
Now that you have some great ideas to get the conversation started, give them a try and see how you do. You may even want to keep track of which conversation starters perform the best in different situations. Good luck!