• Tip #1: If you're not familiar with technology or unsure what to write on your profile, ask a younger friend, relative or co-worker to help you.
Many people wrongly assume that using an online dating service is the equivalent of throwing in the towel and screaming, "All right already, I'll do it - I'm desperate!
" Actually, online dating is not for the desperate.
In fact, research shows that more than 40 million Americans (40 percent of all singles) use online dating services.
It has become a very successful way to meet that someone special.
• Tip #2: Be completely honest in your profile and photo.
You don't want to lie about your age, your background or your personality.
Not everyone will take this advice, but you don't want to start a relationship on a lie, and somewhere down the road, others will know that you aren't what you say you are (or you don't look like your photo).
These days you're in the minority if you don't know at least one person who met their current husband, wife or partner on an online dating site.
According to a recent survey, one in five people in a new committed relationship and one in six couples married during the last three years met their significant other using an online dating service.
Last year alone, twice as many marriages occurred between men and women who met online than took place among couples who met in bars, clubs and at other social events combined.
If you've been considering taking the plunge into Internet dating but aren't quite sure how to get started, here are my nine key tips to ensure that your experience is a positive, safe and successful one.