Online dating services, and society’s perceptions of them, have greatly evolved since their conception in 1995 with Match.com. In 2005, Pew Research Center conducted its first survey on online dating, and then conducted another in 2015 for comparison purposes. The two main take-aways from the studies are that online dating has become more socially prominent and, subsequently, more socially acceptable.
Even with Match.com’s arrival on the market in 1995, online dating was still relatively foreign and negatively perceived in 2005. According to Pew’s 2005 research, the general American populace had little to no exposure. Now, in 2015, 15% of U.S. adults report that they have used online dating sites or mobile dating apps.
Moreover, the population of 18- to 24-year-olds who use online dating sites or apps roughly tripled from 2013 (10%) to 2015 (27%). Similarly, the population of 55- to 64-year-olds doubled from 2013 (6%) to 2015 (12%). All of the other American demographics either increased, yet at a smaller percentage, or remained the same; none decreased in their usage of online dating sites or mobile dating apps.
One of the most direct factors behind this substantial growth is the rise of mobile dating applications among the younger demographics. In fact, approximately one-in-five 18- to 24-year-olds (22%) reported using mobile dating apps in 2015-a stark increase when compared to 5% in 2005.
On February 10, 2016, app analytics company Applause completed a study of 97 dating applications to discover which were faring well in customers’ opinions. The top three most user-approved apps, as reported by Applause, did not include some big-time mobile dating apps, such as Tinder (#5), Match.com (#8), or Bumble (#4). OkCupid snagged the top spot, followed closely by Happn and then Coffee Meets Bagel. Interestingly, these three apps offer a more unique, personalized user-experience.
OkCupid uses a comprehensive profile with a plethora of questions, similar to Match.com, to determine a match “percentage.” This feature is paired with an interface function that lets you swipe yes/no, like Tinder.
Happn connects the user with a collection of other users with whom he or she has physically crossed paths with during the day.
Coffee Meets Bagel
Coffee Meets Bagel greets the user with only a few matches per day. The app carefully selects these matches using measurable analytics. No swiping is involved.
After this review of online dating demographics, the growing number of couples that meet online should encourage more Americans to try the modern dating style. So why not give it a chance? Now, get to dating!