1. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 0: Super Basics
  2. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 1: Understanding Tinder
  3. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 2: Preparations
  4. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 3: Considerations
  5. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 4: Profile Creation
  6. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 5: Settings
  7. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 6: Swiping & Behavior
  8. The Ultimate 2021 SH Guide To Tinder – Part 7: Messaging & Beyond

Hello, and welcome to the complete SwipeHelper Guide to Tinder, 2021 edition.

Since this step-by-step guide is written in such a way as to be suitable for Tinder- or even complete online dating novices, it may contain a lot of information regular Tinder users are already aware of. However, even if this is the case for you, I think you will still find a lot of useful tips and tricks along the way.

Now, when creating your first (or 57th) Tinder account, there are some things you should know in advance, so you can prepare everything needed to create your best possible profile from the get-go, as it will be much harder to improve its digital allure later on, than it is to get it right from the start. Why? Bear with me, that will become clear soon.

Understanding How Tinder Works

To understand why it’s better to prepare a good profile than to start out with a lackluster one to improve as you go, it’s important to understand two details about how Tinder works behind the scenes: Tinder’s matchmaking algorithm, and Tinder’s unofficial account reset policy.

For the purpose of this guide I will assume you already know basics such as that on Tinder, users swipe right to like a profile, left to dismiss it, and that people are matched if they both like each other, after which they can exchange messages. If not, I highly recommend reading the Super Basics of Tinder before continuing.

Tinder’s Matchmaking Algorithm

In short, and to the best of our knowledge, Tinder tries to show you the kind of profile that Tinder thinks you will like, based on your past swiping history. The same of course goes for your own profile: It will be shown primarily to people who have previously shown a preference for profiles similar to your own.

Now it may not be 100% accurate to call this metric a measure of attractiveness, as it is a) not a metric or measure as such, as there is no scale and as b) it is about assigning types to users and matching people with overlapping type preferences. But since the majority of humans prefer conventionally attractive people, or at the very least would not dismiss a potential match because they are just too darn beautiful, all things being equal, the above is a distinction without a difference. Being assigned the “very attractive” type because everyone swipes right on you, and then showing you to everyone as a result, is not functionally different to having a high “attractiveness score”.

While Tinder is first calculating your “type”, your profile receives what we call a “Noob Boost” for one or two days after you sign up. During this short period, your profile is highly visible to a wide audience, but as soon as the algorithm has enough data to assign you a type, profile views and audience width will subside and settle on the level Tinder deems right. This is why it’s so important to get it right from the beginning. Once the algorithm has gotten to know you and your groupies, any improvements you make to your profile will take a long time to become noticeable in terms of likes you receive. Things aren’t set in stone, but the less visible your profile already is, the longer it will take for any changes to have an effect.

For more detailed information on Tinder’s Algorithm, see the main post on the subject.

Apart from your designated type, whom you are shown to-, and how often and prominently you are shown to people in general also depends on other factors, such as how you behave on the app. To increase your visibility, or avoid getting punished for your behavior, you should follow these relatively simple DOs and DON’Ts:

DO

  • Stay “recently active” on the app, by dispersing your daily swiping allotment over multiple shorter sessions rather than one big session.
  • Send messages to your matches.

DON’T

  • Be too picky, nor…
  • Swipe right on everyone. Both get punished by the way of a lowered visibility. A good range to try to stay in would be between a 30% and 70% right swipe quota.
  • Swipe more than 2000 times a day if you are paying for “unlimited” swipes. This may make Tinder think you’re a bot and brick your account.
  • Change your location too often (again, a Tinder Plus feature), this too can get your profile’s visibility lowered drastically. Try to not play around with your location settings more than once a day.
  • Reset your account (too often / unless necessary). More on this below, but the gist of it is that tinder doesn’t like you deleting and then immediately recreating your account and it may get you “shadow-banned”.

For a longer version of this Unofficial Tinder Rule Book, see here.

Account Resets

It used to be rather easy to reset your account and start fresh, whether you changed your profile and wanted another go at everyone who swiped left on you before, or you were exploiting the noob boost functionality to give yourself a permanent, free boost.

The latter is probably why Tinder has gone from turning a blind eye to apparently actively trying to discourage resets by shadow-banning caught accounts. Nowadays, a reset requires a combination of a new phone number, new or scrubbed pictures, a new (or no) Facebook account, new credit cards and/or new google play/apple accounts if you paid for Tinder Plus etc. before, and, and, and…

That is not to say it’s impossible to reset your account successfully, but it’s a bit of an effort and there are many opportunities to mess the process up by being sloppy or missing a step, and there are no longer any guaranteed methods. What we do know – or rather our best advice and guesses on successful Tinder resets – can be found in this guide.

This is yet another reason why it’s important to put some effort into your profile from the beginning. You may not get a second try.

Up next: Preparations.