Choosing the right username for your online dating profile can mean the difference between meeting no one and meeting the love of your life. Here's what works.
Step 1: Consider gender Consider the gender you're trying to attract with your dating profile. Women may be more likely to contact someone whose username indicates they're well read and cultured, whereas one researcher found that men were less likely to choose someone with such a moniker.
Step 2: Weigh sexy versus serious Choosing a flirty -- but not graphic -- username will get you more hits than going with a plain-sounding one. Both sexes are also attracted to usernames that describe physical attributes.
Step 3: Make yourself sound fun Make yourself sound like fun; both sexes are more likely to contact members with a playful, friendly username.
TIP: Spend some time searching dating sites to see what kind of names you'd want to learn more about.
Step 4: Watch the adjectives Don't use adjectives like "wild," "shy," or "zany." Taken out of context, they can make you sound like too much of an oddball.
Step 5: Don't typecast yourself Try not to typecast yourself with a username that indicates a niche hobby or interest. It may help you meet like-minded people, but think of all the people who won't pick you just because they don't share that one interest.
Step 6: Be modest Avoid usernames that indicate you're wealthy. Researchers were surprised to discover that this usually backfires with both sexes: At worst, people think you're lying; at best, they think you're materialistic. Save your showing off, money-wise, for the first date.
FACT: A bad username is a bigger turnoff to online daters than a bad photo, according to one survey.