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Online Dating 101

Thinking of trying online dating but not sure if it’s for you? Maybe you’ve got a friend who is ready to date but is scared off by meeting people over the internet. Oasis Active co-founder and chief executive officer Dave Heysen explains how to set up a great profile, stay safe and what men really want online.

1. Is internet dating becoming socially acceptable in Australia? How do we compare to the rest of the world?

Australia is one of the world’s most competitive internet dating markets. Amongst the 18-35 age group in particular, the perception that internet dating was only for ‘desperate peopl’ has certainly nearly completely diminished, and with the huge advent of social networking and many forms of instant communication finding a date or relationship online is now simply part of everyday life.

2. How do you convince someone that’s curious about online dating to try it?

This is where Oasis Active (now Australia’s most visited dating site) has certainly encouraged more people to “give it a go” with its 100% free model. Oasis Active believe there is still some stigma left with people who have to pay to meet someone online, but Oasis Active has certainly contributed to opening a market segment they in the past would have been put off by the cost.

3. What are your tips for creating a profile that stands out?

Always be honest, and upload as many photos as possible. It is proven that people with photos get connected 10 more time than those without. Also, think about what people would like to know about you and don’t be afraid to put your best foot forward.

4. How do you stay safe and avoid scammers when meeting people online?

While Oasis Active goes to great depths to eliminate as many scammers as possible, by using a very sophisticated customised monitoring system in our back end, we also have a community reporting systems where members themselves can report other members. We take this very seriously at Oasis Active. For users there are some very simple rules:

1. Never give away your contact details, particularly phone and email

2. Get to know the person by chatting on our real-time communication online messaging systems before you arrange to meet

3. When first meeting make it a public place and tell your friends just like you would with any date

5. With 30 percent more men on Oasis Active than women, what are men looking for online – marriage, friendship…?

We recently did a survey of our members and over 73% of users are looking for a serious relationship. Remember also, that there are still well over 400,000 Australian women on the site, so women should feel comforted by that fact. Men are looking to meet new people from outside their social/work groups. There are still plenty of gentlemen out there.

6. What are some great first date suggestions?

Maybe ski-diving is a bit extreme, but do something fun and keep it casual, if all goes well you can always end up having the romantic dinner after an activity.

7. What’s your favourite online dating story?

Our favourite story we have come across at Oasis Active was about a couple who met on our site and around four weeks later the lady had to have a heart transplant. The man who she had met was by her side and the transplant went extremely well, and they are still together. It’s the finding love and having a heart involved that gets me.

Have you tried online dating?