The more someone knew—the better and the more they had asked about the other person ("information seeking")—the more likely the first date was to be successful, presumably because doing so reduced uncertainty.
It appears that, in general, people who ask more before the first date have a better experience than those who wait until they meet to find out important information, possibly because they are less likely to be disillusioned.
Researchers are just beginning to understand the new and complicated dynamics of online dating, and it is unclear what factors go into successful matching, though long-term relationship satisfaction is likely to come from the same factors regardless of how people meet (go here for an overview of predictors of relationships satisfaction).
How do couples move from online dating to that all-important first date?
The ability to find out more ahead of time, versus the proverbial "blind date" or even meeting a stranger at a party, is an advantage that online dating has over conventional dating—if you ask questions, and if the other person genuinely shares.
Importantly, all other factors being equal, greater communication overall, and greater disclosure, predicted first date success.
Real-life online dating experience tells us that it isn't surprising that the first date is typically disappointing.
Indeed, Sharabi and Caughlin found that, contrary to their expectations, the greater the similarity, the better.
There was no point at which there was too much similarity, at least right after the first date.