There's a lot of pressure associated with texting a new match — something as simple as "LOL" may be the reason you never hear from him again. Even an exclamation point seems to tick some people off.
So, where exactly do we draw the line? Should you really go back and correct that tiny typo, or play it cool?
With National Grammar Day on Friday (and prime dating weather just around the corner), we've got these questions on our mind — as do the folks over at online dating site Zoosk, apparently.
Their team has published some research claiming that poor grammar really can have an impact on your dating success, or lack thereof — and an enormous one at that.
The website's findings indicate that nearly half of the 9,000 singles polled (48 percent) consider grammar to be a deal breaker in online dating. News flash: it's time to up your texting game!
It's true that the stats vary between genders: 60 percent of men wouldn’t let grammar get in the way of pursuing a date, but 65 percent of women would.
But it seems almost everyone can agree on one thing: Basic spelling errors are an issue.
The majority of singles who participated in the study — a whopping 72 percent, in fact — reported that they're "turned off" by blatant spelling errors.
Example A: using “alot” rather than “a lot.” The correct version is, of course, the latter. Using the former will decrease your response rate by 12 percent.
Maybe that's because nearly a quarter of the polled singles think poor grammar means someone's uneducated or unintelligent, while about the same number (27 percent) think that person is "lazy" or "just doesn’t care."
In arguably their most interesting finding, the website claims that contrary to popular belief, using a period at the end of a text message impresses singles.
Ninety-three percent of those surveyed would be "happy" if they received a text message with proper punctuation at the end of each sentence, rather than seeing it as aggressive or overly formal, as one recent study found.
Additionally, Zoosk found that response rates to first messages sent with an exclamation point are 10 percent higher than ones without any punctuation or with periods.
Oh, and no need to think twice before sending that "LOL." It should increase your response rate by 25 percent.
"YOLO," on the other hand, decreases response rates by 47 percent. Yikes.
"People need to stop sweating the small stuff," Flicker said. "So many just focus on what's on the paper. How tall is he? Does he have a full head of hair? How's his spelling, his grammar?
"But nothing on paper can determine chemistry. It's irrelevant," she said.
However, she added, looking into someone's education and career can be a good indicator of their intelligence level.
"But if you nit-pick about things like periods and exclamation points, you'll stay single until you're 105 years old. Nobody's perfect," she said.
In the end, it's about being honest with yourself.
"Let's just be real," Flicker concluded. "You're probably falling in love — or not falling in love — with a person, not their grammar or their writing or their spelling."