My personal experience was watching my friends date more along the lines of the junior high. They would ask if the person of their choice would be their boy/girlfriend then 2 weeks later they aren't anymore. No real going anywhere, no real dating. It all seemed silly, I never really dated.
I've always thought dating should be more old fashioned. Going on dates with different people getting to know different guys until she meets someone she wants to be exclusive with. Dating as a means to finding the perfect type of person you would want for a life partner. I think if you help her see it in that way it might make it seem more serious and might make her a little cautious in the guys she agrees to date. It might also help protect her heart.
At her age group dates is best and in home movie dates where you can peek in on her and her date from time to time, also public places for dates.
I would warn her to be careful around older boys, some are good but hormones get in the way and some are not so good. Older boys tend to be experienced and might expect certain things she may not be ready for. Another reason I never really dated and only paid attention to geek guys and guys who were younger then I.
A lot of kids take dating ques from their parents, since her father is a no show I think you talking to her about your dating experience and helping her to understand that she has the power to say yes and no, will be good. Help her learn from your past. Even full grown adults make bad choices. Help her understand that her body is hers and she needs to be in control. Dating can be dangerous and not just emotionally. Certain things can't be undone.
I hope this helps. Good luck.