Plenty of Fish Inbox Email Success Rates for Men

For the average man who is first getting into online dating, particularly a free dating sites like Plenty of Fish, it becomes readily apparent that the email response rates from the dating messages you send out to women are atrociously low. Now some sites are better than others, for instance paid dating sites like Match.com or eHarmony may get you slightly better reply rates due to the fact that the members are more invested, however, if you're a cheap bastard like me, then it may get a bit frustrating logging into your Plenty Fish inbox only to see it completely empty after sending out a mass of emails to a bunch of women. Of course, being the numbers kind of guy I am, I thought it might be useful to find out what an average reply rate even is for a dating site like PlentyofFish. So I did a little number crunching; lets take a look.

First, lets take a look at the average number of first email messages sent out by each gender just so we have a starting point. Also, note that the following data for these charts was taken from a survey I ran on this site over the last two years which consists of 504 respondents who use Plenty of Fish; 219 which were male and 285 which were female.

Just to clarify, these figures represent the average range of emails sent per day per person broken down by gender. So for this chart, one could say that approximately 60% of men and women send between one to five emails per day while on POF.

As you can see, there isn't a whole lot of difference between the amount of emails that are being sent out compared to women. I'd dare to say, that this basically shows me that both genders are equally lazy about messaging potential dates. And as most of us men should know by now, is that online dating is largely a numbers game, thus it's vital to go beyond the 1-5 per day. Also, I'd like to take this time to point out that the "none" category is the second highest for both genders at around 20% of the respondents, which is astounding to me that these people don't do ANYTHING proactive to be successful on PlentyofFish. Although we'll move onto success rate in more detail with the next chart.

This above chart is breakdown of the men, their frequency of emails sent and the number of dates they went on as a result of the emails that they initiated. The chart might be a little confusing so to clarify, the vertical axis represents the number of men that fall into a particular category who sent out either: no messages, 1-5 messages, 6-10 messages, 11-20 messages or 21-50 messages per day. They are then grouped on the horizontal axis by the number of dates that resulted from their respective email message frequency.

So, looking at the first grouping in which men went on no dates at all, it shouldn't be surprising that a large number of those men either didn't send out any messages to prospective dates or sent very few messages with most of the men not sending out more than 5 email messages.

What I do find interesting is the second grouping of men who ended up on 1-3 dates from sending between 1-5 messages a day, which represent approximately 45 men of the 135 who send 1-5 messages a day. This shows me that even guys who are willing to put in minimal effort of initiating contact on Plenty of fish have a decent shot of getting a date.

Of course there are still a lot of guys putting in effort to send 1-5 emails per day and not getting anything out of it, which is definitely frustrating when looking into one's Plenty Fish inbox but from the little amount of data received from the guys sending out more than 10 emails per day, it does appear promising that increased frequency does indeed result in more dates.

Note: this post is part of the 19th Edition of the Carnival of Online Dating.


  1. Nice to see a statistical breakdown of actions people are taking to get dates. Too often I hear wacky stories about what one guy did once to get one date, and then he generalizes it to all situations and all women everywhere. Seeing the numbers behind results cuts through a lot of that. Thanks for sharing. Cheers.

  2. Anonymous10:34 AM

    Well I wont lie. I get a of messages on Plenty of Fish. I personally would say you probably are not communicating your profile enough in a way where girls are interested. Make it at least 1000 words. If you are honest tell them about your past. interest them into your profile with good pictures clothed and smiling. I get a lot of emails just saying how nice it is to see a "refreshing" profile lol

    1. > I get a lot of emails just saying how nice it is to see a "refreshing" profile

      Yeah, those girls want you to buy them drinks.

  3. Gravity6:04 PM

    The second graph would probably be more useful if it was a % on the x axis, so we could see for example that 44% of the 1-5 group got no dates, 34% got 1-3 dates, etc.

    It would give a better comparative against the other groups.

  4. Thanks for sharing this, it makes for interesting reading.
    I'm conducting a social experiment in online dating using the Plenty of Fish website - from men who are happy for me to wear the hijab to cops who want me to cuff them! Thes results can be found at my web address given below.

  5. Online dating definitely is a numbers game, I agree with that. But many of these numbers are inflated by the millions of men who are inexperienced and don't understand women. I would like to see how this would differ if men were highly trained in approaching women correctly fist. It would definitely make for an interesting experiment to see the variance if we had two samples, men with no experience at online dating, and men who received training.

  6. Well, more dates doesn't always mean more success.. Still, it would be great to learn how things are with men who prefer sending chat messages.


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