Conversation Starters for Online Dating

Adult thoughtful woman using a laptop while sitting on a sofa

Online dating doesn’t have to be a scary experience. You can move at your own pace and find partners who fully align with your goals. The tricky part is the get-to-know-you stage. You don’t want to make small talk. You want to plant seeds for meaningful conversations.

Check out these conversation starters for online dating to get inspired for your next adventure.

How to Create Meaningful Conversations Online

Before we get into actual conversation starters, you need to know the recipe for a good question. No matter what the topic is, you can use this formula to jumpstart a conversation.

Try to phrase your question so that it yields a long answer, not yes or no. Instead of asking if the person likes to watch shows, you could ask what their favorite TV show is and why. The answer to the first question might be, “Yes, I like to watch TV.” That creates a dead end in the conversation. The second phrasing may lead to a longer discussion. “My favorite TV show is Supernatural or anything related to ghost hunting.” You could follow that up with a corresponding interest of yours and smoothly transition into a conversation.

The good news is, you have time to think about phrasing when you’re dating online. You don’t have to say the first thing that comes to mind. You can take a second to structure a response that will create more discussions moving forward. Use this formula to gather tons of information about your partner in a short time and see if you truly connect.

Example Conversation Starters for Online Dating

Let’s take a look at some examples of how you should and should not start a conversation online.

Do ThisDon’t Do This
What hobbies do you like to do in your free time?Do you read much?
What is your favorite place you’ve ever visited and why?Have you been to London?
What made you decide to pursue online dating?Have you dated much in the past?
What is your ideal morning routine?What time do you wake up in the morning?
What are your career goals, and what are you doing to work toward them?Do you like your job?
What do you see for the future of your family? Kids, pets, lifestyle, etc.How many kids would you like to have?

As you can see, one set of questions leaves room for more back-and-forth conversation than the other set. You can still ask simple questions if they fit the flow, but if you want a conversation starter with long-lasting results, make sure you phrase it in the right way. The goal is to encourage the person on the other end to talk about themselves and hopefully spark even more questions for the future.

Here are some more examples of good conversation starters for online dating:

  • How is your life different now compared to what you expected it to be?
  • If you’ve had past relationships, what were the breaking points that caused you to split up?
  • What kind of music do you listen to when you want to feel inspired or empowered?
  • If you could only eat from one restaurant for the rest of your life, where would it be and why?
  • What family traditions do you plan to carry into your future?
  • What do you want most out of a life partner?
  • What has your online dating experience been like so far? The good, the bad and the ugly
  • What personality trait do you look for most in a partner, and what do you think is your biggest asset?
  • If you could relive a time from your past, what would it be? What made that time special?

Get even more ideas: 21 Conversation Starters for Long Distance Online Dating

What to Do When a Conversation Goes Stale

If you feel like the conversation isn’t going anywhere, try changing the subject to something fresh. If you find yourself in a series of dead ends, it’s possible that you’re just not compatible with the person. There is nothing wrong with walking away from a conversation when you aren’t feeling a strong chemistry.

Before you do that though, take a look back at the types of questions you were asking. Did they leave room for discussion, or were they mostly yes-or-no answers? Did the other person ask reciprocating questions, or did you find yourself carrying the weight of the conversation. If you used the right approach and still didn’t get much out of the conversation, it’s likely time to move on. Thankfully, there are plenty of singles in the world eager to meet an amazing person like you!