Plenty of fish in the sea, get it? Plenty of Fish makes money by running ads on their site, rather than charging users. Cluttered, clunky design, unattractive typefaces, and intrusive ads are the rule. And they do have a very active forum section where you can read and post opinions on many topics, both dating and non-dating related.
Design gripes aside, Plenty of Fish does what it sets out to do — get you dates. As with any site, your results may depend on your location, age, gender, appearance and interests.
See the end of this article for some general online dating tips.
Pictures Are Worth A 1000 Words
You also can upload many pictures. So the profiles tend to be very clear, specific, and enjoyable to view, assuming the user bothers to fill them out.
The site also uses some interesting matching technology. You answer questions about various topics such as relationships, politics, religion and sexual preferences.
You also choose how you would want your ideal match to answer. You further refine the matches by choosing age range and location. OK Cupid is also well known for its fun quizzes.
Overall, OK Cupid is a very nice site. Seems a little odd for Match to start a free site while running their paid site at the same time. Women especially get concerned about the creepy or hookup factor on some of the dating sites. However, many people can and do use them to find dates. It makes sense…you can post personal information, marital status and photos, so there is just as much information about you as there would be on a dating site.
Step 1 - Sign up
So the next move is up to you. The downside of social networking sites is the TMI factor.
However, you can cover yourself to a certain degree by editing the privacy settings on your profile. This will allow you to control what other people see about you. You enter your location and browse or search for groups on your favorite topics. For example, there are meetup groups for music, movies, hiking, bicycling, politics, and almost anything else.
When you join a group you can view their calendar of events and see who else is attending each event. You also get a personal profile so you can show your location, interests and photos.
Also, if you have children, do not post photos with your kids in them. Sorry, but there are some creeps out there. First dates should be set up in a public place, and not too late at night. Coffee dates are a popular, low-cost option.
Sign up for free
Remember, they know nothing at all about you; all they have is your profile to judge you on, so make it good and make it accurate. Figure out what makes you interesting and write about it. If you have a hard time with that, ask your friends for help. Neither does the ten-year-old blurry vacation snapshot of you in a hat and sunglasses.
Be courteous and appropriate. Initial emails and first dates should be simply a pleasant chance to get acquainted. Ask the other person about their interests. This is not the time to go on a rant about previous boyfriends or girlfriends or your ex-spouse.
Men and women usually have quite different experiences with online dating.
An attractive woman may be deluged with emails without having to do much. Photo Credit via Flickr. There are several excellent options for finding dates online, without spending a cent.