Last week I was invited onto BBC Radio Four’s Woman’s Hour to chat about online dating, and identify the key trends in the online dating world.
Here’s some more detail on the trends we chatted about …
The shift to mobile has well and truly happened, and interestingly, more people prefer to use their phone for online dating, ahead of other internet searches. When it comes to dating, we want access to our accounts 24/7, whether we’re at work, or out and about. And for that reason, more of us log in on our phones, than on our desktops. Gone are the days when online dating was something you only did at the end of the day.
Match.com have released stats that show 67% of site use globally comes from mobiles, over desktops and laptops. And when you combine Tinder with those stats (the Match group owns the popular app), that stat is 82% of Match group product log ins.
With that in mind – expect to see more and more dating apps appearing, and those dating sites which don’t currently have apps – like Guardian Soulmates – developing them quickly. The good news for us as daters, is that sites which don’t currently have responsive websites which work on mobile phones, will be putting time and effort into improving this year.
Security is really important with online dating. As the internet continues to develop, people are becoming more and more sophisticated, when it comes to tricking other people out of their money, and stealing identities and data. As a result, you’ll start to notice online dating sites applying more and more safety features to dating sites.
Lovestruck, for example, has indicators at the top of a user’s screen to show if the person’s Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter profiles have been checked out. Would Like To Meet is a site which uses video verification to check users. Yes, it’s more long winded to get online …. You have to record a special video on your phone and submit it for checking, before you can access the dating website … but it means every single user on their site is a real person.
Behind the scenes, dating sites also use Scammer software, to weed out known scammers, and anyone with particularly strange behavior on dating sites.
The other key trend which has become apparent, as we enter 2015, is the focus on female empowerment, particularly with dating apps. Any straight woman who has used Tinder in the last year, will have seen her fair share of unsolicited cock shots, and that’s something which dating sites are trying to respond positively to. Bumble is a new form of Tinder, but where only women can start a conversation. On Antidate, women are hidden from men. The women initiate conversation, by only showing their profiles to men who they are interested in. On Wyldfire men can only join if they’re invited by women who already use the site, and chat is limited to just 20 messages to make sure people start dating in the real world. And Lulu is a site where you can rate men you’re friends with, or have previously dated.
All in all, when it comes to online dating, 2015 looks set to be a very exciting year!
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx