A decade ago, people may have called you a weirdo for “meeting someone online”, but in the year 2020 it’s as common as Donald Trump using Twitter. Today, at least 40% of couples meet online, 30% of Americans have used online dating, and 17% of marriages begin online. Michael Rosenfeld, a sociologist at Stanford, claims that meeting your partner online indicates you’re much more likely to marry them. This is likely due to knowing a lot about your partner before you meet them thanks to their profile, and that you can also select people who share your interests, therefore increasing compatibility. There are a variety of online dating apps and services to choose from, so to make your search for “the one” easier, we’ve enlisted help from our favorite research site Consumers Advocate, which recently completed a study about online dating.
Instead of spending months on trial and error, they’ve tested and ranked the top online dating services based on three factors:
- Match-making software: Defined as the ability of each company’s technology to find great matches for their customers. While some stick to personality tests, others go beyond with algorithms that quantify the suitability of certain pairings based on comprehensive questionnaires. These assessments dig deep into the mental and emotional health of an individual to find an appropriate match.
- Features: Most dating sites try to make meeting someone online a fun experience and incorporate features like virtual games and real life meetups to encourage interaction. As a result, people get to know each other on a deeper level. Mobile versions of these sites are also available, along with premium options to reach more people.
- Memberships: These vary depending on the length of your subscription, meaning the longer you use the service, the cheaper your monthly fee. For example, if you just want to try a website for a month, be ready to pay around $40. Three months usually start at around $25 per month and six months at about $20. Some companies offer long term memberships for much lower monthly fees—two years go for around $10 a month.
Without further ado, we present to you the top three online dating sites!
Best for Commitment-Minded People
eHarmony is an online dating service tailored to those looking for a long term relationship. They use a matching system that incorporates an in-depth relationship questionnaire developed by Dr. Neil Clark Warren, a clinical psychologist and marriage counselor.
The system matches people by using their 29 Dimensions model, which measures traits like emotional health, ambition, feelings about children, spirituality, artistic passion, and intellect. Note that this service only matches heterosexuals and that the company created a separate website for the LGBTQ community, called Compatible Partners.
Membership to eHarmony costs $39.95 a month for three months, $29.95 a month for six months, and $19.95 a month for a year.
Best for Personality-Matching
Chemistry.com uses a personality test developed by Dr. Helen Fisher as the basis for its match-making algorithm. The assessment categorizes people by character traits and divides them into four types: Director, Builder, Negotiator, and Explorer.
After assigning a personality type, the platform presents you with a list of compatible members and fosters interaction with them through a range of games and activities.
As for membership, the company offers different plans—six months cost $20.99 a month, three months cost $26.99 a month, and a month costs $39.99.
Best for Open Browsing
Match.com is owned by Match Group, the operator of Tinder, OkCupid, and PlentyofFish. Unlike other dating websites that give you a personality test, this one asks you to pick interests from a list to create your profile and produce matches. You can stick to those matches or you can search for dates on your own throughout the website.
Match.com also organizes events for its members, including cruise trips and dinners. Subscriptions start at $59.95 for a month, and go down the longer you stay with them. The cheapest membership is $9.95 a month for 24 months.
Helpful hint: Outside of choosing a few high quality, fun photos of yourself for your profile, be sure to include the type of relationship you’re looking for. According to the Pew Research Center, women are more likely than men to categorize certain information as essential to see in other users’ profiles. Among online daters, 72% of women say it was very important to them that the profiles they looked at included the type of relationship the person was looking for, compared with about half of men (53%).
So, what do you think? Let us know which dating site is your favorite in the comments below.
– Your Big Bro