Classic First Email Mistakes You’re Making

And How to Fix Them

credit: Victor1558 (Flickr)By Jessica Hartman, Certified eFlirter

It’s common knowledge that your profile picture is the first impression you’re making on your online dating profile, but when you write a message to a potential match, it’s actually your words that get the first look. But for many online daters, the first message is one of the most intimidating parts of the process. Thankfully, you have us! Here are the top five most common email mistakes we see, and what you can do to avoid them.

Mistake: “Hey, what’s up?”
Why it sucks: Seriously — is that the best you can do? You’re not giving your crush any reason to answer you, and it seems like you don’t think they’re worth a real message.
How to fix it: Take a few minutes and really think about what you’re writing. Even a quick three-sentence message where you identify something you have in common and then ask about it is much better than nothing … which is what a “what’s up?” is equivalent to.

Mistake: Sending massive amounts of template emails to multiple matches.
Why it sucks: There’s nothing personal to show your match that you actually read their profile (because, well, maybe you didn’t) or care about any commonalities you have.
How to fix it: Template emails can work if you have a sentence or two that you tweak based on the match. We know online dating is time consuming, but it’s worth taking a second to show that you’re paying attention to the person you’re messaging. The return will be worth it!

Mistake: Lots of grammatical errors.
Why it sucks: You look unintelligent and careless.
How to fix it: Use. Spell. Check. Do it. Most online dating sites have built in spell checkers in their message system — take advantage of it! Another technique? Write messages in Word before pasting them into the message box (an eFlirt Expert method). This also avoids the classic ‘early send’ mistake when you accidentally click the Send button before you’re finished.

Mistake: Giving out your number in the first message.
Why it sucks: Too soon. You need to get to know each other at least a little bit before swapping numbers. Plus, who’s to say this person isn’t a crazy pants?
How to fix it: It’s fine to not want to waste time online and meet up quickly, but it’s important to at least let the other person answer you before giving out your number. Most people will also be turned off by this and find you presumptuous.

Mistake: Asking way too many questions.
Why it sucks: There is such a thing as being too interested. The first email is not the time to play 20 questions. It can be overwhelming to your match and hard to answer.
How to fix it: Stick to one question. Having a singular focal point keeps the conversation simple. Remember, you want it to be as easy as possible for your match to respond!

The first message can be intimidating, but as long as you keep it sincere, short and personal, you should be just fine. Don’t be afraid to inject your personality, too!

Did we miss an email mistake you’ve seen? Share it below!