Ah, December… the time for lighting the menorah (and thanks to Thanksgivukkah, that was in November as well), getting trampled at Best Buy, finding the house with the tackiest Christmas lights, and, of course, wondering whether you're going to have a date for New Year's Eve this year.
People ask me all the time, "Is there a best time of year to do online dating?" In short, the answer is no. I'd first say that the best time for you to do online dating is when you're emotionally ready for it. Online dating does take work, so make sure you know what it entails. Online dating is not simply about writing a few lines as fast as you can and posting it to see who writes to you. It's about being creative, proactive, and patient. Once you've crossed that emotional threshold and you're ready to take the online dating plunge, there is one time of year that it may suit you well to log-on: the week between Christmas and New Year's. And then ride that wave all the way through Valentine's Day.
Match.com's relationship expert, Whitney Casey, when asked in December 2011 how the numbers stack up, said, "From December 26 to February 14 is our busiest season. New Year's Eve is such a big deal because it's a new beginning." Plentyoffish.com also reported a 15% jump in signups, in addition to a 20% spike in activity from current users during that time period. Lastly, JDate.com's Community Manager, Rachel Seliger, says the holidays are the perfect time to get online and get excited about meeting someone new. "This is definitely one of our busiest times of the year and that's simply because the festive fun of the holiday season often reminds singles there is nothing better than being around those we love – that romantic relationships! Plus, we often see a big bump in membership numbers with so many people adding 'find love' to their New Year's resolutions!"
As we all probably know, some of the top New Year's resolutions out there are to work out and find love (in addition to saving money, spending more time with family, volunteering, staying organized, and reading more, to name a few). In order to find love, though, you have to do something about it, and that something, according to the statistics, is to look for love online. And when you do, make sure you're putting your best foot forward with flattering, accurate pictures, a profile that truly represents you without sounding too generic ("I love to laugh and have fun" will sadly not make the cut), and a positive attitude about what the future might hold.
Maybe this year is the year to find love and maybe it's not, but for what it's worth, signing up with a brand spankin' new profile on December 26th isn't a bad idea. At least you know you'll be in good company.
Erika Ettin is the Founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps people navigate the world of online dating. Her services include: writing unique profiles to get you noticed, helping to choose your best profile pictures, writing one-of-a-kind emails to get someone's attention, and planning dates. A Little Nudge has been featured in The Washington Post, NPR, Talk Philly, Good Day Philadelphia, JMag (JDate's online magazine), and Ask Men. Want to connect with Erika? Join her newsletter for updates and tips.