You’ve found a girl on an online dating site and you’d like to get to know more about her. Now it’s time for the process of messaging her. You open up the messaging system, only to suffer from black screen syndrome. What do you say without making yourself sound desperate or like an idiot? How do you impress her with your opening line?

Here are four top tips for messaging a girl online, whatever online dating site you’re using.

Avoid the Cheesy Pickup Lines

Unless a girl tells you in her profile that she likes cheesy pickup lines, avoid them like the plague. They’re not that funny and can leave women rolling their eyes. Rather than reply, they delete your message and continue their own search for the perfect guy.

Open up with a polite but not too formal greeting. Use her name as you say “hi,” making it clear that you have looked at her bio.

Keep the writing conversational and light. You don’t want to ask her about her life history in the first message.

Reference Her Bio/Pictures

Make it clear that you’ve read her bio or looked at her pictures. Reference something that jumped out for you. Maybe she wants to go skydiving and you’ve been in the past. This is a great way to show you have a shared interest. If she’s shared a book she loves and you’ve read it, mention that in your initial message.

Popular dating sites will usually offer a short and long profile. You can get a quick snapshot and then delve deeper to find out more. Look at the interests, hobbies, likes, dislikes, and other bits of information she’s shared. She wants to know that you’re genuinely interested in her.

Don’t go into too much detail. Just a couple of references are enough to show her you’ve actually read the bio.

Offer Compliments that Aren’t Just About Her Looks

Looks really aren’t everything. When you want to make paid dating sites work, you need to look past the initial profile picture and check out the details. Look for something that is deeper than what initially meets the eye.

She’ll be appreciative that you’ve looked into her bio. Women love that you’re not just interested in how beautiful she is.

Look at any children she may decide to show in her profile or pets that she has. Look out for accomplishments she’s written down or goals she has in life.

Ask Questions to Get to Know More About Her

In the next part of your message, you want to make it clear you’re interested in learning more about her. Ask questions, but don’t make them obvious—avoid anything that you could have found in your bio.

If you spotted something that’s a shared interest or hobby, find out more about that—how she got into it, what her goals are, or what experience she currently has (if she hasn’t shared that already). Ask her about the books she’s already read, if she shares reading is one of her interests.

This is also the part that you can share more about you. Add a couple of interesting facts that you haven’t included on your bio, especially if they link to the questions you’re asking or the bio points you’ve brought up.

Make a good impression when you first start messaging a girl online. It’s time to get away from the pickup lines and avoid the sleazy comments. Make it clear that you want to know more about her and that you have some common interests. She’s more likely to reply back.