You're messaging with someone on Bumble or OKCupid and then, out of nowhere, they stop responding. Was it something you said? Maybe. Maybe not. Here are some common reasons your matches ghost you.
They didn't read your bio or look at all your photos - It's important to understand that a match is not confirmation of anything other than someone swiped right on your profile. People swipe without thinking, sometimes incorrectly, and don't bother reading a bio or looking at other photos unless a match is made. It is then they realize you and they ultimately are not a match.
You waited too long to respond - It's natural to not want to look too eager, but you also don't want to be perceived as aloof or, worse, not interested. Try to reply to or contact your match within a couple of hours of initially matching. If you can't reply as quickly going forward, that's okay, just communicate that in a future message. The goal is to open the lines of communication so your match feels acknowledged.
Your first message was boring - Nobody says you have to open with a knock-knock joke, but you need to say more than "Hey" or "How's it going?" Demonstrate that you gave your message some thought before hitting send.
Your first message was an obvious cut and paste - Men and women both are guilty of writing the canned response email. Something in that first message MUST convey you read their profile. You do not have to personalize the entire message, but there has to be one reference to something related to your match's bio, prompts or photos.
Your first message was overwhelming - A lot of people think it's unique to lob an ice-breaker-type question at their match in their opening message. Until your match writes you back, there's no confirmation they've even read your profile, let alone want to engage in witty banter with you. Let that first message be a simple introduction. Save the ice breaker questions (which aren't a bad idea!) until they respond and possible mutual interest has been established.
You said something inappropriate - References to physical affection or intimacy will frequently result in crickets. Do not make any kind of innuendo-laced comment unless your match does so first. Then, follow their lead if you're comfortable doing so.
VERY IMPORTANT - One of the main reasons people make sexual comments in the early stages of messaging is because they're trying to gauge how sexually liberal their match is. It's a counter-intuitive approach, as the subject is widely considered volatile and inappropriate, so I don't recommend it.
Something suddenly came up - Life happens. I was in the middle of messaging with someone once just before my Dad died. Sometimes certain news or obligations are thrown in our path without warning. If they're genuinely available and interested, your match will communicate the sudden change and set an expectation as to when they'll be back in touch.
They matched with someone else - This is why I urge everyone to move off the dating platform as quickly as possible. As long as your match is surrounded by other potential options, they're going to swipe. Never assume they stop doing so just because they matched with you.
They're cheating or otherwise unavailable - Many people keep their options open until the very last second. Others keep them open around the clock. Your match might be juggling multiple people and decided to focus on only one (or two.) Or, they live with someone and either have no privacy to message or got caught.
They're not ready to date/using the app for entertainment - I'll say this again: do not - I REPEAT DO NOT - engage or swipe on any profile that has not been properly filled out. This is the main reason so many people end up frustrated. If they can't be bothered to take the time to properly fill out their bio and prompts, they either think they're so good looking they don't have to or know they have no plans to meet anyone.
They changed their mind - This one's tough, but it happens. The conversation wanes or someone gets too familiar with their match and says something problematic. This is yet another reason I implore of you to move to video chat or an offline date within a reasonable amount of time. You should not be messaging more than a day or two before you plan a date.
They were never that interested in the first place - Ouch. Hurtful, but accurate. I would dub this the #1 Reason Your Match Flaked. If you're the one pushing everything forward, they're just not that into you. If there's long lags between messages, they're just not that into you. If their messages lack enthusiasm, they're just not that into you. If they always have an excuse as to why they can't meet you yet, they're just not that into you. Take the loss and walk away with your dignity in tact. Don't send them follow-up emails or sassy responses calling them out. They do not care. They will not change.
With that out of the way, here's some tips to increase your chances of a response...
Make sure to include one or two fun facts in your bio. Provide your match with topics that can act as a springboard to conversation. You can even use your photos as ice breakers by including certain items, backgrounds or locations. If people struggle to find something from your profile to mention in their message, they'll either send the bland "'sup?" or not message you at all.
Fill out all the basic stats/include them in your bio - There are some basics that everybody wants to know about their match:
What's their height?
Are they employed? If so, in what field?
Do they have kids? If so, how old?
Do they drink/smoke?
Are they single, divorced or separated?
Where do they live?
Do they have pets?
What is their political affiliation?
What is their stance on religion? Do they practice any particular faith or abide by any traditions?
Answer these questions with your bio, prompts or photos. That way, people won't pass on you because they aren't sure where you stand on certain issues or whether your lifestyle choices align.
Respond in a timely fashion - At this point, you have maybe a few hours to initiate contact with or respond to your match before someone moves on. Don't wait more than a day to send them a message.
If I missed any feel free to leave them in the comments.