We turned to Alexa, a web-traffic analytics company, to better assess how many people are on each site clicking around, and culled those with below-average numbers: fewer than a million active users in the US. We can assume those numbers apply to most online dating sites.
The problem is mobile users aren’t reflected in Alexa data — which means a dating site like Zoosk, with half as many active desktop users as our top picks, but way more app downloads, could have been left out.) Be Social network, Blendr, Chemistry.com, Cupid.com, network, Date2020, Fidelity Dating, Friend Finder network, Grouper, How About We, Jaumo, Lava Life, Meet Me, Meet Mindful, Mesh, Mingle2, Once, Spark.com, Speed Date.com, Tastebuds.fm, Tawkify, The Heart Market, Twoo, Zoosk Our finalists are all likely names you recognize — Ok Cupid, Match.com, e Harmony, and Plenty of Fish — and our tester tried them all.
All four of our top sites used some sort of algorithm to match you with people you should be compatible with and interested in — and keep those “automatic nos” out of your feed.
We wanted the LAs of the online dating world — but definitely take a peek at who didn’t make the cut.If one catches your eye, you should certainly add it to the mix.We found 68, from Alikewise to Zoosk, and started analyzing their user bases, functionality, quality, and cost to find our top picks.Evaluating the robust functionality of a full-blown website against the swipe-rightness of an app was too unfair.Well, not every kind: We excluded sites that catered specifically to how someone looked or to “unscrupulous” relationships (think Ashley Madison).
We also didn’t evaluate anything marketed as primarily for hookups — the best dating sites facilitate all sorts of relationships, from friendship to long-term monogamy and everything in between.
Chemistry, attraction, and love are obviously difficult to quantify, and (also obviously) different people have different desires, needs, and goals for their romantic lives.
Plus, your experience with any online dating site is going to be colored by all sorts of things: your gender, age, sexual orientation, looks, location. Knowing it would be impossible to evaluate the ineffable, we set out simply to find which online dating sites were most likely to get you a compatible match.
Are you more likely to find a match using a site that serves up the most people, or one where everybody checks off at least one of your Dream Guy/Girl boxes?
The answer: You’re most likely to find a match using both.
We briefly touch on mobile-only dating apps below, but apps deserve a review that’s all their own (so stay tuned).