How to Build a Dating App: Tips on Creating a Dating Application
It’s 2021 now, and searching for romantic relationships online is a modern trend. Many years ago, dating apps were considered strange hook-up spaces, but the situation has changed for the better today. There were more than 44 million users of online dating platforms in the USA in 2020. And this number is expected to increase to 53.3 million by 2025.
As you can see, these platforms are popular among users. The days when you could meet your soulmate in shopping malls or parks are gone. There’s no need to hunt for your relationships in libraries or cafes in the era of gadgets. No matter what kind of romantic relationships you are looking for, there’s an app or a website for that!Now, let’s move on to more interesting data — what’s the revenue? According to Statista reports, in 2020, the revenue from online dating was $602 million. By 2024, it will increase to $755 million. Therefore, we can conclude that building a dating app can be profitable for investors and a superb tool for people looking for a soulmate. In this post, we’ll take a deeper look at this question and provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to create a dating app, what mandatory features such apps must include, and analyze the average cost of making a dating app.
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Why Making a Dating App Is a Good Investment
Before you invest in this project, you need to weigh the pros and cons and find out whether it’s a profitable investment for you. To substantiate our statement, let’s take a closer look at the statistical data. According to the statistics, we can see that in 2019 there were 34.75 million single-person households in the USA. In a survey from 2019, we can see that half of the interviewed people agreed that the chances to meet a soulmate online are higher through the use of mobile apps.
Stanford University also did comprehensive research in this niche, which showed that from 1965 to 2017, the number of people who found their soulmate online rose sharply from 2% to 39%. More and more people are using dating apps such as eHarmony or Tinder to find partners online.
The statistical evidence is enough to see that this niche is trendy today. People go online to study, buy things, and find their soulmates. Among similar platforms out there, Tinder is considered the best and most successful dating app. Many entrepreneurs are eager to find out how to make a dating app like the giants in this niche.
So far, dating apps are in demand. So let’s move on to creating a dating app that will surely be popular among users!
11 Features to Consider When Creating a Dating App
The first and foremost task is to analyze the competitors and define your future product’s main features. It is clear that there’s a set of mandatory and additional features. Let’s take a closer look at the main ones your dating app should come with:
This is a compulsory feature where users publish information about themselves (name, surname, education), their interests, hobbies, etc. Users of a dating app usually look through a user profile to find out if this person is a perfect match for them, so the profile should be informative enough and give an insight into a personality behind it.
People are mostly looking for a soulmate nearby. The chances that partners from different parts of the country will ever meet are too low. Therefore, it’s a mandatory option that allows users to decide in what region they want to find a soulmate. It also allows them to choose nearby regions.
We live in the 21st century, the epoch when AI-technologies drive the market. Therefore, programmers can integrate AI-based algorithms that will activate smarter matches based on interests, age, etc. This technology allows users to find potential candidates quicker.
Chatting is the primary option of any dating application. When a person finds a match, the first thing they do is write to each other. It’s one of the best forms of conversation with strangers. Make sure your chat is user-friendly, and has GIFs and a set of attractive stickers (they usually make communication easier).
Users of your future dating app should be able to see notifications on their devices even when they are not using the app. This option allows them not to waste their precious time and see only important updates and messages.
Although this feature is not mandatory, it makes your dating app more user-friendly. When users browse their newsfeed, see a photo, and wish to like it, they need to swipe to the right side. If they want to skip it, they swipe to the left. It’s a well-established mechanic that users expect to see in modern dating apps.
The main goal of settings is to customize a dating app according to your needs. Settings usually include tons of options ranging from choosing by categories to customizing filters, choosing a location, sound off/on, etc.
The main goal of an admin panel is to keep everything under control. It allows app admins to block aggressive users, solve technical issues, answer customer requests, etc.
This is probably the best and most effective way to attract users to your dating application. The thing is that almost all users have accounts on Google or Facebook. Therefore, you should provide them with an opportunity to register on your dating app via Facebook, Google, or any other service. In doing so, you’ll make the registration easier and quicker.
Remember that modern users are lazy; they don’t want to undergo a time-consuming and complicated registration procedures where they need to create a lengthy password.
Make sure the profile sections don’t take too much time to manage. When they are easy to operate, your targeted audience feels more engaged. All in all, make profile management simple, fast, and easy to navigate.
Although voice chat is not as important as simple chatting, if you want to make your dating app unique, you should consider adding a voice chat. Some users don’t like text messaging and prefer communicating via voice chat. Moreover, it can help make an app more competitive.
The success of your dating app is contingent on the features that you offer. However, you should also remember that you should entrust this task to professionals in this area. Experts from Interexy.com have many years of experience in software development and can help you turn your ideas for a future dating app into reality.
Tips on How to Create a Dating App
Let’s move on to reviewing the dating app development process. Let’s take a closer look at the main steps to follow.
Your first task is to analyze the market and identify the leaders. It goes without saying that it’s a good practice to scrutinize the market leaders such as Tinder, Badoo, Happn, etc. Let’s mention some facts about the market giants:
- Tinder. The app is available in more than 190 countries. $4 million users are paying subscribers. It’s a perfect solution for users under 35.
- Badoo. It’s one of the best dating apps in the world, available in more than 190 countries. Experts say that it’s the best tool for finding matches locally.
- Happn. A dating app that has more than 50 million users worldwide. Statistically, it’s one of the best location-based applications.
Download all these apps, create your accounts, and test their functionality. You should also learn their monetization methods and analyze their strong and weak points.
Validate a dating app idea
Building a powerful dating app is quite challenging, and you risk going the wrong way. What makes dating apps so popular? Why do users love them? What features will your users appreciate? To answer these questions, you have to conduct a poll or an in-depth interview and ask your core audience what features they would appreciate in your app.
Besides, you should also create a plan to follow where you can visually represent your idea’s viability. On average, it has the following structure:
- State the main problem of users;
- Offer your solution to this problem;
- List your main selling points;
- List the main benefits of your dating app;
- Explain how you are going to promote your product;
- List main indicators of success;
- Figure average cost;
- List your main revenue channels;
Create the profile matching algorithm
After users complete their profiles, they are ready to find their soulmates. The first step is matching. To help users find each other, dating apps use a myriad of matching algorithms. Let’s take a closer look at the most popular solutions:
- Mathematical basis. It finds users based on answers they provide to questionnaires. The mathematical algorithm usually functions measuring the compatibility percentage of the given answers.
- Location awareness. People are mainly looking for soulmates in the same location. The chances to find a partner within your area are usually higher. Therefore, dating apps use GPS components in a matching algorithm. After you create your account and indicate your location, the app will suggest a list of the most suitable accounts in your area.
- Behavior-based matching. The thing is that question-based compatibility is not always enough as not all users provide truthful information about themselves in their profiles. Behavior-based matching analyzes the behavior of users online and leads to compatible matches.
- Advanced matching algorithms. Modern dating apps use machine learning, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality. They improve user experience and provide more precise matching.
Securing your dating app
Security is one of the greatest concerns of online dating. Insecure dating platforms can quickly become a place for frauds and fake accounts. Your first and foremost task is to make sure your dating platform is safe for users. Incorporate a profile verification method, phone number, social media verification, or even photo verification. All this will help make your dating platform safe for users. Plus, it also improves the user experience.
Choosing the right features
Dating apps usually have an essential and additional set of options. You should choose the right features that will surely catch the audience’s attention and make them stay on your platform.
Make sure your users can log in to their accounts through a social media account like Google or Facebook. The next significant option is the capability to provide basic information about themselves like location, gender, age, etc.
You should also provide such features as to like or dislike. Develop an engaging and user-friendly chat system that supports emojis, animations, GIFs, or pictures.
A ‘discovery preferences’ feature allows users to find potential candidates quicker. They can set preferences that can help them find more suitable matches.
Among other mandatory features, we can also list geotagging, a voice chat, swiping, and social shares.
Selecting a Tech Stack
Although you can entrust this task to your software development team, which knows how to develop a dating app and what tools are needed to tackle that challenge, you still should keep everything under control. We’ll review the main tools needed for building a dating platform for Android or iOS. However, a lot depends on your requirements for the app and the goals that you wish to achieve.
- Programming languages: Java, Kotlin, Swift;
- Web servers: AWS, Nginx;
- Database: Redis, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, SQL;
- Payment Gateway: PayPal, Stripe, CCAvenue;
- Framework: React, Express.js, Node.js;
- Cloud storage: Amazon services (S3, EC2), Rackspace, Heroku;
- User Profile: Loadable views, TRON/Alamofire (for iOS), RecyclerView, Fragment with User Info for Android.
Again, a lot depends on your feature list and the type of dating app that you wish to get.
Find out more about the Interexy development process. First, we immerse ourselves in your business and analyze all its components. After that, we provide you with the general estimation for your product, a budget, and a timeline.
How Do Dating Apps Make Money?
We’ve covered just about everything, so now is the time to answer this question — how do dating apps make money? The thing is that monetizing dating apps can be harder, but this doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
Mobile dating apps usually make money on:
- In-app purchases. Users can purchase various icons, in-app currency, or smiles which improve user experience.
- Subscriptions. Only the basic version of the app is offered for free. Users are asked to pay for an advanced version.
- Ads. Such apps usually sell space for various ads to other companies.
Dating applications usually earn money by offering extra options in their premium plans. When users are limited in functionality in a free version, this acts as an additional motivation to pay for a premium plan.
Nevertheless, many owners confessed that it is really hard to earn money on dating apps. Let’s take a deeper look at the main obstacles:
- Mostly, there’s an imbalance between male and female users where women make up more.
- Dating apps are always focused on acquiring new customers. Simply put, if you want to be profitable, you need to invest in promotions. When people find each other, they leave this platform, and you lose your customers. Therefore, you need to focus on continually growing your database.
- Users aren’t brand loyal and are frequently using a few apps simultaneously. It means you need to compete for your place in the sun or develop a truly unique idea on the market.
So, how much money do dating apps make? According to Statista, revenue from online dating in 2020 was $602 million. By 2024, this number is expected to increase to $755 million.
What Is the Cost of Making a Dating App?
Well, how much does it cost to make a dating app? It’s the question of utmost concern for all investors. On average, the price varies from $25,000 to $100,000. A lot depends on your requirements for the product, the number of features you want to add, and the design. Beware that you also need to invest in marketing and promotion.
See more in the table below:
|Type of work||iOS||Android||iOS and Android|
|Web (back-end, admin panel)||—||—||670h|
|Preparation of a demo version||90h||90h||180h|
|Release to production||22h||22h||44h|
|Total Time||1623 h||1623 h||2559 h|
|Total price||approx. $50,000||approx. $50,000||$80,000|
What experts do you need for building a dating app?
- 2 Backend developers;
- 1 UI/UX designer;
- 2 Android developers;
- 2 iOS developers;
- 1 Project Manager;
- 1-2 QA engineers.
However, a lot depends on your requirements for the particular project.
Our Experience: MUSL App
Your future dating app’s success on the market is contingent on the experience of a development team responsible for building this product. We at Interexy have many years of experience in mobile app development and know for sure how to meet the requirements of a customer and deliver a top-notch product.
On the plus side, we have decent experience in this niche. Recently, we have been working on a gay dating app — MUSL. Our main mission was to create a trusted social app environment where partners could easily find each other. This platform has three different profiles: Friend (for finding new buddies), Flirt (for finding a new date), and Fun (for finding a new play partner). When you finally connect with another user, your other profiles will be automatically blocked for him. This allows users of this platform to decide what they want to share and when.
The main challenges of this project were as follows:
- We had no support from the previous development team and had to rewrite the backend from scratch.
- The existing project had a host of tech bugs.
- No proper architecture implementation, which led to spaghetti code present on the app. We coped with this challenge by implementing the proper architecture.
Overall, we managed to create a user-friendly dating app with millions of users from all over the globe. We rewrote the backend, fixed tech issues, migrated the old database to new AWS, and set up the admin panel.
Why choose Interexy?
- We adapt to new trends.
- We know how to build a dating app that will beat your competitors.
- We have many years of experience in the area of software development.
- We care about the security of customers.
- We have a team of 70 professionals.
- We have already released 16 apps.
To ensure success when creating your dating app that will be attractive for adults, don’t hesitate to contact the Interexy team. Our company has relevant experience in this niche and provides full custom development services on customer projects of any level of complexity.
You may accept the idea of dating online or not, but dating apps are indeed here to stay! What’s more, they are our reality. People prefer searching for partners online and need more reliable platforms where they can achieve that goal. If you are going to invest in mobile dating app development but still haven’t the slightest idea of how to bring your idea to life, don’t hesitate to contact experts from Interexy! We’ll surely help you enter the competition with a fantastic dating platform!