By Matthew Evans
Online dating is everywhere. From the college crowd to seniors (including the 83-year-old friend of my colleague who met her new husband on Match.com), meeting people online is more widely accepted than ever.
Whether you’re contemplating joining a dating site or already have, your profile is the key to meeting the person right for you. And studies by dating sites have shown that the most important part of your dating profile is your photos — it’s what people rely on most to decide if they want to message you or respond.
We all have intuition about what makes for a great profile photo(s) but to ensure your profile shines, we combed through a number of studies from online dating sites to bring you these tips.
You might be shocked to learn that at eHarmony, many people didn’t include photos at first. Those that did were nine to fifteen times more likely to receive a message. Now eighty percent of eHarmony’s subscribers post at least one photo. And today, across the major dating sites, people post an average of four photos in their profiles — so don’t just include one!
Match.com recently found that people prefer photos of others in the summer, and think it makes them look more confident and attractive. So avoid only showing photos from that trip you took last December (unless you were in the southern hemisphere!).
Ladies: Wear Red
A University of Rochester study showed that women who wear red in their online dating profile photos are likely to get more messages and dates versus any other color. You don’t need to do it in every photo, but if you have a photo where you’re wearing red, give it a try.
Gents: No Eye Contact or Smile
OkCupid found that for men, their photos are most effective when they don’t look into the camera and they’re not smiling. Perhaps it’s the intrigue.
Include Witty Captions
So this tip isn’t from a study but we think including witty captions is a great way to show off your personality and creativity that is overlooked by the vast majority of online daters. Try it out.
What are your pet peeves about dating photos? Have you made changes to your profile that produced results?
Matthew Evans is co-founder of Standdout.com offering the quickest, easiest FREE way to improve your online dating profile. At Standdout.com members post their dating profile (photos and content) and ask other members for their feedback. The site is moderated to keep the feedback positive and constructive. Better profile, better dates.