Why Do They View My Profile But Not Message Me?



Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): Meghan
Comment: I’m new to the whole online dating/match system, and was wondering if someone could explain to me how to take it if a guy views your profile but never emails?  Should I take it to mean they aren’t interested and I shouldn’t bother messaging them?  Or if I’m interested in a guy who viewed my profile, is it still worth it to send him a quick message.  What about the flip side, where they “wink” but don’t write to say hello or anything?  Or heck, even favorite you without saying anything.

Is this just guys being complicated, or am I thinking too much about this?
Age: 29
City: Washington DC
State: DC

There are numerous reasons why someone might view your profile you but not message you that have NOTHING to do with you personally. Let’s take a look at a few:

1. Viewing is the new wink/flirt/hug/kiss/smooch what the hell ever – I have said over and over again that sending out messages to randos on a dating site is a gigantic waste of time. Because it is. What I have advised is that people do whatever they can to draw someone’s attention to their profile, such as view it and make sure the person they’re interested in can see that they viewed their profile. YOU’RE WELCOME!

2. They read your profile and wonder if maybe they’re not what you are looking for so they don’t respond - This is the problem with those stringent, involved, laundry lists people have on their profile. If you’re too specific or too rigid, you risk alienating  a lot of people. Your profile should not IN ANY WAY mention what you are looking for in a mate. Like, at all. Your profile should ONLY ADDRESS your likes, values, personality, and what you bring to the table. That’s. It. Let other people decide if they’re what you’re looking for, and then simply weed out those who aren’t by not responding to their messages. The biggest mistake people make when writing a profile is utilizing too much space talking about their Dream Partner.

3. Your “You Should Message Me If” section or sign-off is too detailed – Again, this section should stay succinct and simple. “You should message me if…something in my profile resonates with you and you’d like to get a drink.” Boom. Done. Clear those calendars, folks. You’ve got dates to plan. Leave that section open enough that people feel comfortable giving you a shot. Don’t make them jump through hoops to prove to you how right they are for you.

4. Your profile doesn’t give them anything to reference in their initial email- This, too, is something I see frequently. People write a bunch of vague descriptions and include a string of adjectives and nothing else. You don’t have to give people your exact address or the name of your office building, but you should explain what you do for a living or for fun beyond, “I work in a career I enjoy” or “Weekends are spent with my friends at happy hour or dinner.” Zzzzzzzzzz. You need to give people something specific to mention in that first message. Always, always fill out that favorite movies/books/music section to completion. That’s where most people find a commonality to cite in their intro message.

5. They’re planning on emailing you but know they’re not available for a week or so – Many people bookmark profiles and return to them when they’re schedule frees up.


What about the flip side, where they “wink” but don’t write to say hello or anything?  Or heck, even favorite you without saying anything.

By winking or favoriting, they are saying something. Someone favorited me Friday night. I favorited him back. We messaged. We went out last night. It was okay. Won’t be seeing each other again, but that’s not the point. The point is to demonstrate that winking isn’t a bad thing. Don’t stand on principle. People are tired of the online dating rigamaroll. They’re sick of expending effort and getting no return on investment. That’s why Tinder has become so popular. There’s no reading profiles, there’s no sending customized messages, etc. All they have to do is swipe. If someone winks at you, wink at them back. I used to say people should just write back to people who wink at you, but because so many of these sites now offer a Tinder-ish option, it’s possible people are swiping Yes without ever seeing your profile beyond your picture, age, and location. Then, when you match, they see your whole profile and learn you have kids or are only 5’2″ or whatever and they don’t respond. Winking back is less investment.

That visitors list on whichever site you are using is a goldmine. You should be checking that daily. If you see someone you like, message them with, “You should have emailed me. I would have replied.” Don’t go overboard or make too much effort. Just write something simple and shoot off the message.

Seriously, stop sending messages to people who haven’t initiated some kind of interest first. You’re wasting your time. The response rate for people who do that is abysmal, and you’ll only end up frustrated and burnt out. Go for people who are looking for someone like you instead. Message those people and you’ll notice a higher response rate.




Sometimes the love of your life is the love of your life. (R)


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21 Responses to “Why Do They View My Profile But Not Message Me?”

  1. TL Says:

    #4 is the most common reason I don’t message women. If your profile is boring and generic, I am not going to waste time thinking of a witty response. Maybe I’ll throw out a quick wink or a “Hey, how is your weekend going?”, but not much more.

    • SS Says:

      I’m curious as to your expectations and subsequent experiences when you’ve *entered* the entire interaction with a negative judgement?

      • Donnie K Says:

        It sounds like TL is referring to the generic nature of so many profiles. Too often guys will resist emailing because, we have little to go on. Therefore, we’re not going to sit there and try and come up with some witty opener that has a 90-95% chance of being ignored.

        The best way to illicit responses is to talk about what interests you. I don’t mean long walks on the beach for the fact that you’ve been everywhere from here to Nepal. I’d rather know what TV, movies, music, and books you’re into than hear someone drone on about how much they love to laugh or usual blather. Too many profiles are lazily written (or thanks to Tinder, barely filled out at all).

        Want responses? Bring something besides cute photos and a bunch of cliches to the table.

        • SS Says:

          You’re completely missing my point.

          It seemed he was saying that he was already irritated by the woman’s profile – so why email her if already judged… and what response does this elicit?

          • Donnie K Says:

            That is a reasonable question. My guess is that his comment stems from reading so many generic profiles. Only TL can say for sure

            • SS Says:

              Lol. Right, I agree that generic profiles are crap and irritating. But I don’t understand why he then contacts these women with a half-hearted “hey”

              • fuzzilla Says:

                I also thought that was weird. Clearly the pictures are the only thing he’s basing his interest on. Possibly he’s giving them the benefit of the doubt that their personalities aren’t coming through in their profiles, but either way, the profile isn’t the thing spurring him to action, so…

  2. Jim Says:

    I’m in a situation where my [uncontested] divorce had been submitted to the court, but won’t be final for 60 days. I mention this in the “message me if” section for the sake of full disclosure.

    Should I remove it?

    • mxf Says:

      I’m no expert, but as someone who has used dating sites, I would think twice before reaching out to you if I saw that. Not because your divorce is pending or so recent (which might be considered obstacles) but you pointing it out in your final section would make it seem like you think it’s a big deal, or you think I should think it’s a big deal… that would give me pause. I mean, two months is nothing – I don’t think you owe me a timeline on the proceedings. If you mention somewhere that you’re looking forward to the next chapter of your life (or that you’re looking to meet new people, or whatever your dating goals are) that would tell me more about where you stand than your divorce date. One data point!

      • Jim Says:

        Thanks. No its more that I know that might be an issue for some women and I’d feel awful revealing it during a date and having them think I was concealing it.

        • mxf Says:

          I don’t think you should feel awful. It’s a fact from your life, and it’s brought you to where you are today, and I don’t think anyone should feel bad about that. The only time I had someone “reveal” he’d been really, really recently divorced (like, they decided to divorce and lied about the separation date to push it through, so he had very recently still been married) and felt a bit deceived was because he was quick to also reveal that he was unlikely to be up for anything serious, although “you never know.” I guess he didn’t know my intentions either at that point, so maybe we could have both wanted to not get serious together. And he was likable and seemed pulled together. But I was ready for something that had potential, and I didn’t love that he had used the recent divorce as a way to pump the brakes while still dangling the possibility of a LTR with “you never know.” But even with that, when he asked me out again we just had a really frank conversation about where we both were at, and agreed it might be too far apart to fairly start anything up. So I think your intentions are more important than your past, is what I’m trying to say :)

      • Timothy Horrigan Says:

        There is also a good chance that people will visit your profile more than once. So, for example, they might come back 59 days later and wonder why the divorce is still 60 days away rather than just one day away.

  3. Bill Says:

    Meghan, Moxie is right.

    From a guy’s point of view, if he is viewing your profile and winking or favoriting you, and you are not doing the same back, then that says you aren’t interested and that he should move on.

    IF you are interested, reciprocate his signals… it’s the online equivalent of making eye contact and smiling at a guy across the room. He’s looking for a green light.

  4. Nia Says:

    A lot of time, when I was online dating, I’d click on a photo that seemed promising (after having set my filters and preferences) and click through to the profile, only to find some major deal breaker. I didn’t bother explaining to someone who was into kinky stuff, was a heavy pot smoker, had small school age kids, was poly/open relationship, or any other deal breaker (for me) that “sorry bud, you’re cute but you have X deal breaker”. Why bother? Not like he’s going to change, and it only opens up a negative line of talk.

    Perhaps this is happening. Some deal breakers you can’t help. If you’re very religious, or have kids, that’s not going to change. But as Moxie pointed out, some you can downplay, until you are on a date and get a feel for someone. What might be a deal breaker, like “She doesn’t like sports” could be just another data point on a really great date with a guy who thinks you’re cute.

    So go over your profile and make sure that you don’t have any un-needed deal breaker stuff like “I’m a vegan and you must be too!” or things that are more of a “nice to have” rather than “must have”.

    Possibility B: He’s just flaky. :)

  5. Mark Says:

    Honestly, I think the points raised by Moxie are a good starting points. I might add to her list that after looking at your profile, they might have found some type of deal breaker or even just wasting time clicking on profiles.

    Just like real life – he may look… you look back and smile… or not.

    The point is it could be almost anything so it’s hard to say with any certainty if it’s one thing or a few things. After all different people have different styles and/or motivations.

    But if all you are getting are looks, winks and the like but no real follow up, then you might want to take a look at your profile (both photo’s and text) and see if there are any glaring points worth re working. I mention that because guys are usually expected to be the ones who actually message first and usually are not shy about doing so. Women often lament that they get either inundated with likes, winks, messages or the like or they get a whole lot of silence. Women then look and make a thumbs up or thumbs down decision. But if are looks but no real follow up then something is very possibly askew from their perspective.

    Best of luck and hope things improve.

  6. Jef Says:

    Back when I was doing online dating I would avoid profiles that contained certain red flags. If a woman rambled on about how much she loved cultural events in New York City and international travel she looked like a “gimme girl”. I’m not cheap, but wasn’t put on this earth to subsidize a lifestyle a gimme girl feels she is entitled to.

    • Nia Says:

      I guess I’d have to see the ramblings in question, and in context of the profile. To me, saying you like cultural events and international travel is kind of standard. “I like rides in a G5 and top shelf liquor, shopping sprees and penthouse apartments” to me says more that she’s a “gimmie girl”. How does one know that the profile poster doesn’t take herself to cultural events and finance her own travel?

      Also, aren’t cultural events and travel something you two could do together? Sure, it’s maybe asking a bit much for a girl to be subsidized on trips/visits to a museum, but isn’t that part of the give and take of a relationship?

      All moot point since you’re off the market or at least not internet dating, but food for thought, I guess!

      • Yvonne Says:

        I would hope that someone living in a culturally amazing city like New York would value that. Why would you assume that a woman who loves those things can’t afford to do them on her own dime?

    • Lissa Says:

      Did you consider that maybe she likes to pay for her own trips or even pay for yours? Were you only checking out early – mid 20’s cashiers that enjoyed these things or were you looking at profiles of women who may have been capable of paying for such things? My guess is that you were checking out much younger attractive women out of your age bracket and honestly your league for you to react as if all women who love to travel must be gold diggers.

  7. Jef Says:

    You would not believe some of the online dating profiles I browsed. Many of them were ordinary women trying too hard to impress strangers that they are extraordinary. I am cultural, but that is only one of my many interests. It cracks me up when a phony says she loves the opera and the ballet but she really grew up loving potpies and watching tractor pulls with her daddy.

    Travel is a huge step in any relationship. It isn’t about the money. It is about the enormous commitment of being stuck with someone for days. I have close friends who I know I can’t travel with because they are difficult. I have no problem with it. I will go almost anywhere for the evening because even if I have a horrible time I know I am going home afterward. When you travel you can’t go home at the end of the evening. I am not cheap, but I am nobody’s meal ticket. And I’m nobody’s fool. And anyone who can’t dig it is cordially invited to eat the peanuts out of my poop.

    I met my current significant other through networking, which is the best way. She is a straight shooter like myself and is interested in me and not my paycheck. Isn’t that the way relationships should be?

  8. AV Says:

    As for only viewing, it could just be as simple as something in the profile makes him think she isn’t compatible, like race/religion/smoking/drinking/offspring/distance etc. Not really earth-shattering news, but a pretty solid possibility. For example, one thing I’ve seen a lot in the state I used to live in, and in my current location, is “420 Friendly.” If I see that in the profile then I pass right over because I’m not interested in dating a pot head, no matter how thin and hot she is.

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