Online dating sites absolutely
In the meantime, the bottom line is that while some users think quality does come at a price, there are benefits to free dating services as well.
When it comes to meeting people online, sometimes you just don’t want to swipe anymore.
“I’ve always assumed that putting anything behind a pay wall makes it more attractive and weeds out the casual users and trolls,” agrees Joseph Lynn, a Chicago man who used e Harmony and Match as well as a few free sites.
“The fact that e Harmony matched me with several women with whom I shared common interests led me to believe that I was seeing more quality matches.” At the same time, you shouldn’t write off a site just because it’s free.
In the 2016 Consumer Reports Online Dating Survey, more than 9,600 people who had used an online dating service in the last two years were asked which one they had joined.
Forty-eight percent said Match, a paid site, but Plenty Of Fish (free) and e Harmony (paid) tied for second most popular, with 23 percent apiece.
Joining isn’t cheap, though; a one-month membership will cost you .95. But the site’s description is a little misleading — 18 percent of its members have not had a college education. Open Minded Open Minded is intended to be a stigma-free place for people to seek open and nonmonogamous relationships without fear of judgment.
Inspired by Jiayuan.com, the largest online dating site in China, he thinks dating sites would have happier customers overall if they did away with their current pricing models and charged users per message sent.
“If sending messages had a price or you could send only a fixed number per day, people you contact online would know you had to give up something to do so, which would incentivize better behavior,” he says.
But in terms of overall satisfaction, our survey found that free dating sites actually score a touch better than paid ones, probably because they're a better value.
Although our survey found that no dating site or app sweeps online daters off their feet in the satisfaction department, Ok Cupid is rated highest overall by respondents, and Grindr, a free app for gay men, is also near the top.