Match.com is arguably the best known of all the popular online dating sites, and I wanted to find out if that reputation was for good reason. They claim that one in five relationships start online, which is, well… a whole lot. Match sets up “hundreds of thousands” of singles a year, so I headed over to see what made this dating site so much more special than every other dating service out there. Continue reading below to see what insights I had during my Match.com review.
The login page was nice, and photo heavy – though it was good to see some thumbnail images of the kind of personal ads I might actually see on the site as opposed to stock model pics. I would like to submit to Match.com however, that the large hero photo was an odd choice. Are the single men on your site going to pull me kicking and screaming into a desolate wilderness? And why am I still looking at this woman’s derriere?
I immediately liked that the sign up process was relatively painless during my Match review as opposed to say, eHarmony or PerfectMatch. While I like the idea of matchmaking based off an extensive personality profile, they really are pretty draining, so it was a welcome surprise to be allowed into Match with just a few simple answers. One of the other nice things about signing up is that it was completely free – and Match claims that communication between singles is as well. Would Match.com really work as a free online dating service? I was bound and determined to find out. I’d spent my last red cent on a totally practical sequined evening gown for New Year’s Eve so I was pretty glad they didn’t ask for money anyway.
After the Login:
Man, Match.com throws you right into the action, which I really enjoy. The second I signed in (using my email address that was NOT the same as my username – a security feature presumably designed to protect me from kidnappers like that guy on the first page…) I was greeted with about 20 thumbnails featuring local singles.
I’ve noticed that the free dating sites seem to give me more options and matches from the get go than paid sites. Definitely both a plus and a minus since more options means more sifting, but you can’t win if you don’t try, right? Two birds in the hand? Something like that…
The online dating site itself was very, very simple. Aside from a few tabs up top to aid searching and a left-hand navigation panel that allowed me to narrow down my search criteria there wasn’t really anything to look at except the matches themselves.
The dating personals as a whole were, honestly, a little better quality than I had been seeing on other dating sites: the photos were really clear, the information about each guy was sparse but informative, and best of all, there were a TON of profiles to look at. I drastically reduced my age range and there were still 178 singles within 100 miles from me, a vast improvement over the two matches offered to me by eHarmony.com.
They weren’t all winners (#47, next time you eat a rack of ribs and wipe your mouth on your t-shirt, consider changing before posing for a photo the entire web dating community can see), but overall the matches were a pretty good mix of attractive, normal looking dudes. Another thing I like about Match is that there are no pretenses for “love” or “intimate singles chat” or any other awkwardly-segmented qualifications. You meet singles then together you figure out if you’re looking for the same type of encounter. As far as I’m concerned, the less rules a dating software places on my matches, the better my chance to actually use the singles site for dating.
So Match.com isn’t all loosey-goosey, every man for himself…they do offer the option to complete a more detailed profile to better aid their matchmaking services. Once you give them a little more info, Match reviews your profile and those of other members, then sends you a “Daily 5.” The Daily 5 basically amounts to 5 members a day in an email for you to yay or nay, and if you’re both gung ho, Match.com will introduce you, simple as that. It’s like having a mutual friend help you meet people without, you know, actually having to meet people. I like this feature and its unassuming approach.
If you don’t like the matchmakers behind the scenes at Match.com you are still free to go it yourself which seems far less limiting than some of the other popular online dating services.
It was interesting to note that Match.com and Chemistry.com are linked, and clicking (or, rather, neglecting to unclick) a box on the survey posts my profile on both sites. Not knowing a lot about Chemistry.com, I declined, but this service could be of great use for those trying to maximize their time spent online.
Pay to Play:
While most of the features on Match.com are free, subscription services also provide some benefit. Match is a bit less expensive than some of the other paid online dating sites, running between about $17 and $34 per month, depending on the length of subscription. An interesting bonus offered by Match is their “Match.com guarantee” which provides that if you “don’t meet someone special” within 6 months, they’ll give you 6 months of free online dating. Intriguing, and definitely a good pull to get users to purchase a 6 month subscription.
You know, I was far more impressed during my Match.com review than I initially thought I would be, if we’re being 100% honest with each other. I really liked how unrestrictive it felt compared to other online dating websites I’ve used – my rate of success totally depended on how much I felt like digging. I would much rather have too many singles to go through than not enough, as I assume most people would. Some of the most notable finds during my Match review were:
- Match claims that it sets up more dates, relationships and marriages than any other dating service. A big claim, but definitely worth investigating.
- There aren’t a lot of bells and whistles to the site – all you get is matches, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
- You should expect to pay to really get the most out of Match. It would be a shame not to take advantage of the Match.com guarantee, and messaging is pretty much a must.
Overall, this Match.com review found that the site isn’t quite as geared toward long-term, mushy gushy love as sites like eHarmony(review) tend to be. Match wants you to find a “connection,” whether that be vague and non-committal or leading to the altar. A great site for those who want sheer volume in the numbers of matches they’re presented, Match.com is one of the oldest and most-used dating services available today, for good reason. A logical first stop for those new to or scared of online dating, Match is unintimidating, easy to venture into casually, and simple in its approach. If you like Facebook, you’ll probably like Match.com, and, well, that pretty much includes everyone in the Western Hemisphere.
Pleasantly surprised is how I feel about Match.com. I stumbled onto the dating website with low expectations, which paid off in the end. If you’re looking for a huge selection of local singles to browse through, Match is your site. It’s totally generic and wholly unspecific which is how I’ve decided I like my online dating, and also how I like my men, come to think of itJoin