Three Essential Ingredients for “Sparks to Fly” In Online Dating

Ingredient #1 -A profile that says something

There is a lot out now about profiles being meaningful and really “saying something,” but what does that look like?

Here are a few examples that will show you the difference between thinking you have said something about yourself, and really doing it.

  • “I value compassion, kindness and accountability” Who doesn’t? The real question is whether or not you do anything that counts as all of those. Give examples of the types of acts you admire, and a few things that you have done. Admit to things you wish you had the guts to do and that you admire in others.
  • “I believe that true commitment is made over time.” Well, ok. So what does the beginning of that time look like and what type of commitment are you talking about? Remember, for sparks to fly in online dating you need to get the dating going first. It is a good idea to send out a signal of where you want to go and what could be possible – but don’t spend too much time on it.

Ingredient #2 – Good and recent pictures

The profile picture can make or break online dating.

Sparks fly in online dating when there is also a physical attraction – does this mean you should be flexing your bicep or making a duck face with the camera angled down your cleavage?


Studies have shown that the following elements make/break a picture on a dating site.

  • Men that are smiling in a picture are perceived as less trustworthy.
  • Women that show their breasts, cleavage or make a duck face are not taken seriously as dating material.
  • Pictures of both genders that show their full body are better received than close-ups.
  • Pictures of any gender with others of any genders are big turn offs.
  • Pictures with pets – no.
  • Pictures with kids – big no-no. This doesn’t show a loving parent, this is taken as showing someone using their kids to get a date.

Ingredient #3 – Simple communication that grows

This one is the hardest for most people to master.

The ebb and flow of conversation and messaging when you are first meeting online is what really determines whether or not sparks will fly in online dating.

The two biggest mistakes people make are:

  1. Revealing too much too soon.
  2. Constantly messaging the person when they are online.

You have to make sure that the details you reveal about your life are in keeping with how well you know the person.

If you have just started exchanging messages now is not the time to send them a 4 page email about your miserable childhood, battle with cancer, and the recent death of your dog.

You want to keep the content of your messages appropriate to the intimacy you have – this can be difficult because online intimacy can come fast, but it may not be grounded enough to handle real life revelations.

You also want to avoid bombarding someone, or coming across as stalking them.

Make sure there is a balance between who contact who first when online.

How to make sure the sparks keep flying in online dating

Once sparks start flying in online dating, the next task is to keep the fire burning.

In order to do this you have to find a way to move the relationship forward.

It doesn’t have to mean that you meet in real life, just that you add a new dimension to your online relationship.

Consider a video call, or sharing an online game, or anything that increases the amount of time you spend together but also allows you to share an activity.