Clicking for love; why the online dating industry is bigger than ever.

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These days, we all know someone who is trying online dating; or most likely, a lot of ‘someones.’  As younger generations prefer to connect with technology and social media and there are more single adults in the U.S., the online dating option is rampant. Even seniors are starting to flock to online matching sites! But online dating isn’t just connecting people for casual dating but leading to long term relationships and more than a hundred thousand marriages every year. The popularity of online dating has grown into a skyrocketing business, too, as companies cash in on the online dating and networking trend. Here are some stats about how much we’re clicking for love:

Why we’re looking:

Back in 1960, 72% of Americans were married. As of 2013, the number of married people had fallen by about 1/5, to 51%.

That means there are about 124.6 million singles in America today, or 50.2% of our adult population.

How big is the online dating industry?

Today, 33% of couples meet online. That number is expected to rise to 70% by 2040!

120,000 U.S. couples get married every year after meeting online.

67% of singles know couples that met through online dating.

About 5.5 million users actively frequent online dating sites every day.

In the summer of 2013, of the 20 top-selling iPhone apps, 13 were dating apps.

85% of singles say that meeting people through online dating is socially acceptable.

Online dating is big business.

The online dating service industry is now estimated to be worth $2.2 billion.

Online dating sites spent a record $241 million on national TV ad placements in 2013.

In the first half of 2014 alone, online dating sites have spent $214 on ads. The top 5 dating sites spent 95% of that.

In 2013 there were approximately 3,898 dating services that employ 7,376 people.

Mobile dating apps and smart phone apps generated a $1 billion in revenue in 2011, and is expected to reach $2.3 billion by 2016.

Love is expensive.

Singles in America spend about $82 billion every year on dating.

The average courtship costs $23,660.

25% of singles have used a coupon on a first date. (hahaha!)

Only 73% of those surveyed said they would continue to date a coupon clipper.

Who is dating online?

The typical demographic of online daters is a male, aged 30-49, employed, and of a higher socioeconomic status.

The average male online dater is 5’10” while the average female is 5’4”.

The average male online dater has never been married, while the average female online dater is divorced.

38% of people who are “currently single and looking for a partner,” have used online dating sites or mobile dating apps.

What sites are out of sight?

The five largest dating companies account for almost half (59%) of US dating service revenue.

By market share the largest dating service companies are:

27% IAC (, OkCupid, Tinder, etc.)

13.8% eHarmony at 13.8%

5.1% Zoosk

3.2% Spark Networks (JDate, Christian Mingle, etc.

Tinder is expected to boost those numbers even more, based on its meteoric popularity!

How do we connect?

87% of people surveyed think online dating is a good way to find a partner.

About 16% of couples meet through online dating. Of the remainder, 14% work together, 12% meet through mutual friends, 7% meet through social media, and 7% at social gatherings.

There is a 1 in 6 chance a man will respond to a woman’s message on online dating sites.

However, there is only a 1 in 25 chance a woman will respond to a man’s message on online dating sites.

Friends and mothers are the most popular dating consultants for singles! (With mothers playing Cupid, no wonder we’re all single!)

What sparks a match?

43% of people say poor grammar is a turn off when reading a dating profile.

The number one thing single people look for in a relationship is common interests.

1 in 5 men claim to have experienced love at first sight in their lives, while only 1 in 10 women claim the same.  (Are men more romantic?!)

Posting photos of you and your friends decreases your chance of response by 42%. (Which one is she?)

While posting a full body profile of yourself increases your chances by 203%

Men had the most success when not smiling and looking away from the camera in their profile photos, meeting 90% of the women they attempted to in some studies!

Women who stared directly into the camera making a “flirty face” received the most messages per month.

Differences between men and women.

80% of initial communication is made by men in online dating.

75% of women say posting sexy photos is a big turn off.

When men list their must-have qualities in a partner:

63% Someone I can trust

57% Treats me with respect

40% Is physically attractive to me

37% Has sense of humor

36% Is comfortable with her sexuality

When women list their must-have qualities in a partner:

84% Treats me with respect

77% Someone I can trust

58% Makes me laugh

47% Shares the same values

46% Is comfortable communicating

The majority of women desire to be matched with a man who is 6 feet tall.

For every inch under 5-foot-ten, a man must make $35,000-$40,000 a year extra to be seen as equally “attractive” as their taller competition.

75% of all messages sent were men to women.

Median time it takes to respond to a message from the opposite sex:

Men, 16.1 hours

Women, 19.1 hours

Going on dates.

In 2005, only 43% of online daters actually went on a date with someone their met online. These days, that number is up to 66%.

15% of singles in the United States preferred drinks over dinner for a first date.

68% of singles say they still want to chat on the phone or in person to schedule dates.

47% of singles research their dates on social networks like Facebook before meeting.

46% of men and 35% of women follow-up about a date the next day.

On a first date 72% of singles feel it is a big NO-NO to talk about exes.

In America 58% of women and 56% of men have never been on a blind date.

Las Vegas Nevada, Detroit Michigan and Columbus Ohio are the top three cities with the most “open-minded” daters.

In it for the long haul.

17% of all marriages in the past three years started online.

79% of men and women in their 20s and 62% of those in their 30s plan for marriage to be a part of their future.

20% of current committed relationship began online.

17% of marriages in 2012 began on an online dating site.

According to surveys, the 3 most important factors in a long-term relationship are:

1. Partner’s family treats me well.

2. Similar views on pets (REALLY?!)

3. Likes same activities.

Fidelity optional.

Nearly 25% of singles say they would consider marrying someone who is unfaithful to them while dating.

27% of men state that the most difficult marriage vow for them is being faithful. (The most difficult marriage vow for women at 32% is for better or worse!)

72% of women and 60% of men say it’s ok to casually date more than one person at the same time.

In the U.S. almost 2/3 of singles believe it is at least somewhat acceptable to see more than one person at a time

The biggest threat to marriage is infidelity according to almost 50% of singles. Financial problems came in second at 18%.

Social media and dating.

65% of singles do not post their relationship status on Facebook.

Before a first date 48% of women and 38% of men research the person on Facebook.

49% of women and 27% of men would cancel a first date over something they found while looking up the person online.

Breakup to (really) breakup.

Online couples breakup more. In a year on average 32% of couples who met online will breakup. (In comparison, only 23% of couples that met “offline” have left each other after a year.)

When a husband has a close relationship with his wife’s parents, the couple’s risk of divorce decreases by 20%.

50% of singles said they would consider breaking up with someone they were casually dating via text.

24% would consider ending an exclusive relationship this way.

Genuinely untrue.

54% of dating site users have found someone who has misrepresented themselves in their dating profile.

24.3% of men and 13.1% of women lie about their age on dating sites.

Men are on average 2 inches shorter than they claim in their online profiles, while women are only on average 1 inch shorter.

59% of women and 55% of men lie about their weight.

People tend to inflate their salaries by 20% on dating profiles.

That over-embellishment rises with age; only 5% of men and women in their 20’s lie about their salaries. But 35% of men and women in their 50’s lie.

The bad news.

In most states dating services are not required to do background checks because of a law that says websites aren’t liable for user content.

22% of social media site users have deleted an ex or someone they dated after it ended.  17% went so far a to untag themselves or delete photos with that person!

It’s estimated that on Facebook, Tinder, Instagram, and other social media, networking, or dating sites, about 26% of all profiles are not real people, but completely manufactured!

The one lie the majority of online daters won’t tolerate? Lying about smoking!


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