Last Updated on January 21, 2022

Dating online is the new trend of starting a relationship be it of any kind. In earlier days, there were several ways of getting in touch with an interest of the opposite sex like meeting through friends, meeting in college, meeting at gyms, however, in current times meeting and dating online has taken over all the other alternatives. The dating mobile app market at the moment is growing at a rapid pace and millennials are playing a key part in this surge. You can relate online dating apps to social networks since a large majority of the public is making use of them and because of this at some moment, you would also think of giving it a try.

By the end of 2018, it was revealed that the World Wide Web has hosted over 8000 dating websites. Certainly, there is a lot of competition, however, there are not many dating applications that can satisfy all the major needs of the users. This can be taken into account anyone can decide to jump into this market to provide the customers what exactly they are looking for. So, in case, you have made up your mind to give this field of business a try, then this blog will act as a guide to you to help you achieve what you are trying to.

Why Invest in Dating App Development – Market Size

Having a detailed look at the facts and figures of the subject you are going to invest in is a paramount step that one needs to take as it gives an about various subjects such as audience they one is looking to target, their needs & desires and also the specific features they desire. Let us have a look at some intriguing figures that will help you out in your analysis.

  • 60% of the public in the age group of 18-29 has used a dating website or app once in his life
  • 20% of the couples in the U.S. met through online dating apps
  • The usage of online dating sites and apps by young adults has nearly tripled since the year 2013
  • 1.6 billion swipes take place daily on Tinder
  • 17% of the online dating users get engaged to the person they met through the online medium
  • 66% of the online dating app users have gone out on a date with a person they met online
  • $1.8 billion per year is the revenue that gets accumulated by several dating apps across the globe

According to statistics of a major firm, 52.4% of people using these dating apps are men. In 2017, a large chunk of dating app users was older than 25, however, by the end of 2019, the average age of users dropped a bit and about 30% of overall users now are in the bracket of 18-29 years.

Types Of Dating Mobile Applications

As we mentioned above that there are a total of 8,000 dating apps across the globe, this will sound overwhelming to anyone looking to enter the world of dating app development. However, you can sigh of relief as you don’t have to compete directly with all these 8,000 competitors, you only have to go head-to-head with the competitors of your niche. You need to identify your direct competitors and then study how they go about their work and where they focus on their rights and wrongs. Now, let us have a look at various types of online dating app.

1. Geographic Proximity Dating App

Geographic Proximity dating apps are the type of apps that allow users to look for matches within their proximity. With the use of navigation services, one can have a look at all the profiles of love interests popping up in their suggestions. User can select the radius up to which he wants to see the profiles of the suggested love interests.

Coffee Meets Bagel is a popular geographic proximity dating app that was created through out-of-box thinking. This app hands over the power of starting the conversation in the hands of women. A man cannot send a text to a woman straight after liking her profile, he can only start a conversation only after he receives alike back on his profile. Coffee meets Bagel has also put a cap on the number of likes a person can make in a day, thus promoting meaningful relationships over hookups.
Other examples of geographic proximity apps are Tinder, Bumble, OkCupid.

2. Niche Dating Mobile Apps

If we target a specific niche, it is going to play into our hands as there are comparatively fewer competitors and you can easily create a loyal user base for your app idea. DateMyPet is one such app that decided to go away from the normal and provided a platform for pet lovers to bond on their app. Breakups over pets are pretty common these days and if go by the stats, then we will discover that number of such types of breaks is as high as 86%.

3. Matching Algorithm-Based Dating Apps

The app algorithm compares the profile of the new user with already existing profiles in the database and suggests matches on that basis. Let us have a look at how the matching-algorithm of famous dating apps work.

  • Dating or hookup apps like this use the score to rank users based on attractiveness.
  • This step is performed after the app has counted the number of people that have swiped right on a person’s profile.
  • More the number of likes, the higher the user will be ranked in the rankings.
  • The app suggests this user’s profile to other users that have a similar amount of likes.
  • In this manner, the app processes match from the most liked profiles on the dating app.

You can see that there are possibilities in abundance and analyzing the market leaders of the field you are looking to invest in is never a bad idea.

Monetization Strategies For Online Dating Service Apps

The cost of developing an online dating app is quite high therefore you would require some monetization techniques that can assist you in running your app without worrying about the capital. So, let us have a look at our top picks.

1. Selling Advertisements

In-app advertisements is a tried and tested method in which you are paid by multiple companies for promoting their brand through advertisements on your app.

2. Access To Premium Offers

This method has been employed successfully by Tinder. Tinder offers Paid Tinder Plus accounts to its users which opens the door for unlimited swipes, likes, and additional benefits to its users.

3. In-app Purchases

Happn is the premium user of this monetization technique which offers users to buy extra swipes, likes, and emojis. In detail, Happn offers its users to buy ‘charms’ in exchange for some dollars and when you ‘charm’ someone on Happn, they are instantly notified about it, therefore, increasing the chances of a match.

4. eCommerce Integration

eCommerce integration simply means that ecommerce software is synced with the dating application. Selling goods that couples tend to gift each other is a great ecommerce idea to generate revenue through dating applications. However, ecommerce functionality must not overshadow

Attributes Of A Successful Online Dating App

There are a lot of attributes that contribute to making an online dating app successful, however, in this section, we will have a look at the two most important attributes that add success to the process of an online dating app.

1. Personal Data Security

Online dating apps contain the personal data of millions and millions of users across the globe. Now this leaves them with a huge responsibility of protecting this huge amount of data from getting leaked. In the past, there have been two to three incidents in which the data of the users got shared with untrusty sources. In 2019, the user accounts of OkCupid got hacked in large numbers. This incident established the fact that even well-established giants are not safe from cyberattacks.

Now if you are looking to develop an online dating app then you need to ensure that the personal data of the users are safe and secure. Whatever measures you need to take, you have to take them. The security of the personal data of the users should be the topmost priority of any online dating app. If the security barrier of an app is breached then it would be impossible for the users to place their trust in the app again.

2. Robust User Verification

Implementing a robust user verification is the bedrock of any security strategy. There are plenty of options available in the market in this regard, however, the thing to keep in mind is that the dating app should choose a solution that considers their technology and security needs, ease of interoperability, and integration. This option that the online dating app is choosing should be future-ready.

For sure, online dating apps cannot control when and how the threat will appear but with the assistance of best practices and effective policies, dating apps are well-equipped to face the evolving challenges upfront.

Popular Dating Apps In The Market

Since we are looking to get an idea of how the top-level dating apps in the market works, let us have a closer look at how these apps work.

1. Tinder

Tinder online dating app
  • Intuitive UX is something that popularised Tinder. Swiping term was introduced by Tinder and swiping left and right becomes quite addictive for the users as they are looking to get their Tinder match.
  • Platform integration is key to attracting users. Tinder has integrated with Facebook and Instagram which saves a lot of time for the users which they otherwise would have wasted in creating a profile of theirs on Tinder.
  • Innovative features are an integral part of the functioning and appearance of Tinder. Some of the innovative features that attract users are List, Matchmaker, and Moments.

Tinder is heavily used in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Western Europe, and India.

2. Badoo

Badoo online dating app

Badoo is the most prevailing online dating app in Oceania, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Russia. Badoo was launched only a year after Tinder has taken the dating market by storm as to date it has already amassed revenue of $130 million.

  • Badoo has two screens: one for swiping left and right to find the match like in Tinder and the other one is basically for browsing a list of people nearby your location.
  • Badoo provides full freedom to its users as one can send texts to a person who has not liked their profile. This may sound suspicious to some of the users but they don’t have to worry as Badoo has a two-message limit and block users who can’t generate interest in the other user within that message limit.
  • The security aspect of Badoo is worth praising as it contains a selfie-on-the-spot feature that completely frees a user from catfishing.

3. Happn

happn local dating app

Happn is another online dating app that has a unique way of connecting two people romantically. The list of people that Happn shows you are the ones that you have crossed paths during the day, one you saw on the other side of the street, sat across in a café or a transport vehicle. It has features contrasting to other apps.

  • Offer users the option of unlimited likes in a day unlike Tinder
  • The monetization model that has been adopted by Happn makes the app completely free for its users.
  • Several people pop up in your list without you having to like or pass them.

However, there happens to be a qualm among people regarding Happn that it promotes stalking through its approach. So, make sure that you are targeting the right set of audience in case you are looking to launch an app on a similar concept.

4. Facebook Dating App

facebook online dating

Facebook dating works a different concept and is unique if we look at other apps. Features that Facebook dating app offers are quite different and amongst them, it is Live Location. This feature comes in handy when you are out on a date with someone. When you are out, using the live location feature, Facebook sends out your live location to a friend of yours which makes him aware of where you are and with whom you are. It is hard to make online dating 100% safe but Facebook is taking steps to reassure the users just in case. Make sure to integrate this feature in your app to increase the number of downloads of your app.

A great thing about Facebook Dating App is that it does not match you with your Facebook friends. On top of this, you can also turn off the feature which would match you with friends of your friends. In case, you want to be matched with one of your Facebook friends then you can kind of apply for that by adding them to your secret crush list, a notable feature of the Facebook Dating App. It is a subtle feature that allows people to add up to 9 people to their secret list and the users are then sent a notification that notifies them that someone is crushing on them. However, they would not be able to see who did it until and unless they add them to their crush list too. This feature saves a person from getting embarrassed in front of a Facebook who is into them romantically.

General Features In An Online Dating App MVP

User Panel

  • Register and Login Securely
  • Verification of Profile via email and phone number
  • Location-based matches
  • Chat and Meet Requests
  • Upload pictures and add other personal profile data
  • add sections to profile via drag n drop
  • Manage User Profile (share/block/report)
  • View Matches and Suggestions
  • Send and Accept interest requests
  • Respond and Decline interests
  • Connect with Customer support
  • Create Private Photo Album
  • Manage profile privacy and visibility
  • Report and Block users
  • Reward points/Loyalty Bonus/discounts for referring friends
  • Push Notifications and alerts

Admin Panel

  • Secure Login to Admin Dashboard
  • Verify customer profile
  • Manage customers/invites/rewards
  • Affiliate and Partnership Program
  • Membership packages
  • Manage Email and SMS marketing
  • Run promotions/discounts/offers
  • Multiple Currency Support and Payment gateway integration
  • View Reporting and analytics
  • Push Notifications and notification via email and cellphone
  • Manage Membership Levels
  • Moderate Content via CMS
  • Track Revenue
  • Multiple Languages Support and Translations
  • Manage Menu/Pages/Screens
  • Add/Manage Moderators

Developing A Tinder-like Dating App

In this section, we will take you through all the necessary features that you would be required to integrate into your dating app to make it look more and more like Tinder.

Registration or Sign Up

When you will open the app for the first app you will be welcomed with a tutorial guide. After that, you would be required to register with the app either through traditional email registration or through trending social media accounts integration. You can register through any of your social media accounts be it Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or any other.

Creating a Profile

After you have registered with the app, you will have to create a user profile of yours which includes several sub-features.

  • Viewing of the profile
  • Editing profile which includes adding videos, images, adding interests, editing bio
  • Verifying the profile through various modes of modification such as Instagram, phone number, Facebook, and email verification.
  • Popularity factor
  • Credits (if you have integrated the app with the in-app purchases monetization method, then this feature will come in handy by showing the user’s wallet ad locating options buy credits)
  • Superpowers/charms/ boosts

Discovering People

Integrating geolocation features in the app is paramount as it will help the users in finding the right type of person they want to get in a relationship with. When the app is provided access to the phone’s GPS, it becomes effortless for the users to find people with similar interests in the nearby area.

Matching Algorithms


Matching is the function around which all the working of a dating app revolves. Matching requires basic functionalities such as user’s info card, like/reject user, view a user’s public information. Matching is not random at all and matching algorithms start with the user’s profile data and preferences. After this, an Artificial Intelligence engine learns about the user’s choices based on profiles they like or reject. With time, the user starts to come across more and more profiles that he is going to like.

Chats

Once the likes are exchanged on profiles, the next step is to communicate through chat. Your app needs to have the following features.

  • A look into user’s connections
  • A look into connected user’s profile
  • Chat
  • Video calls
  • Upload videos and images in chats

Security Features

Most of the online dating services out there try to make online matches anonymously. Profile verification is another method through which you can determine whether is genuinely interested in the idea of the project or are just looking to create a nuisance.

The reporting feature is a top feature to have in your app as it allows the users to report any kind of harassment from a fellow user.

Push Notifications

You need to be quick if someone shows you interest otherwise there is every possibility that the other person would find someone who shows genuine interest in them unlike you who took ages to respond to their text. Including push notifications in terms of alerts and notifications is a feature that needs to be integrated into your app at any cost.

Settings

Settings are the feature that is the core of any kind of app so special attention needs to be given to it.

  • View the ‘about us’ section of the app along with the terms and conditions
  • Contact support and receive help through the contact center
  • Set up notifications and filters
  • Link the user account to all his social media accounts
  • Delete the user account
Hire mobile app developers

Team Structure for Developing An Online Dating App

A proper understanding of a mobile app development team will help you tremendously in selecting the right partner for your app development. So, let us have a look at all the positions which make up an app development team.

  • Project Manager
  • Scrum Master
  • Product Owner
  • Designers
  • Front-end and Back-end Developers
  • Analyst
  • Quality Assurance Lead

Tech Stack Required To Develop An Online Dating App

technology stack for mobile app

Here are some of the basic technologies that the app development team will require for building an online dating service platform.

  • Programming Languages: Java, Kotlin, Swift, Xcode, Maya
  • Frameworks: Node.js, Express.js, Next.js, React Router
  • Database: HBase, Cassandra, PostgresSQL, MongoDB, Redis
  • Cloud Storage: Amazon S3
  • Web Servers and Load Balancer: Nginx
  • Payment Gateway: Braintree, PayPal, Stripe, EWallets, Netbanking
  • General Utilities: Optimizely, Twilio, Elasticsearch, Google Maps, Google Analytics.
  • Admin Panel: Angular Material
  • Code Repository: Git
  • Caching: Hazelcast
  • Backend: C#, Visual Studio 2019, Net Core 2.3, MySQL, Swagger
  • Frontend: TypeScript 3.2.0, WebStorm, Angular
  • 3rd Party Services: Amazon S3, Facebook SDK, FCM, Web Sockets
  • Messaging queues: AWS Simple Queue System

Cost & Time Required To Develop Dating Mobile App

Custom io dating app normally requires 1447 hours or more to get developed. As far as the total cost for developed ios dating app like Tinder is concerned, it requires at least $50,000. However, if you decide to develop a second app for Android, then it will cost you an additional $25,000 or so. Find out how much it costs to develop a mobile app.

Wrapping Up

People look for various sources to find out their perfect partner and online dating apps are one such source. As time is passing by, these dating mobile apps are gaining the trust of more and more people which makes them a surety for financial success. However, one needs to keep all the requirements of present-day users while developing a dating app. Through this piece of information, you will be able to develop a dating app that is similar in approach to Tinder which will fuel your chances of glory.

Author

I am an eCommerce consultant, a member of the Forbes technology council with a decade of experience in the ecommerce development segment. My expertise can make your business overcome any obstacles while you are dealing with the Magento ecommerce platform!