How to Earn Customer Love as Dating Apps Fall Behind

Cyan Zhong
Cyan Zhong


Online dating is a $9.6B market that lures in millions of singles worldwide. The US leads the pack: Three in 10 Americans have dabbled in dating apps, and 10% even found a serious partner there.

But it’s not all roses:

😥 ~80% of users say they have online dating burnout

🚫 ~90% have felt the need to take a break from online dating

👀 Dating apps are getting creepier with too much AI

Subsequently, popular apps have been losing users.

Chart of popular dating apps gaining and losing users.

Source: Similarweb

This fatigue is ushering in a renaissance of ‘the good old days,’ when dating was less digital.

Singles, especially Gen Zers, are preaching the good vibes of a pre-swipe world. Here are two ways business builders can serve them:

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How Your Business Can Solve for Online Dating Woes

1. Help your audience lean on a trusted network

One of the reasons for online dating burnout is the lack of trust (unsurprising, really). Finding a boo through more reliable channels, like friends, is making a comeback.

Tinder recently launched a friend matchmaking feature, responding to the fact that over 75% of singles discuss their dating life with friends every month.

Your friends gulping down that hot relationship tea. Source: B Currently In

But with Tinder’s user decline and overall perception, you could unbundle it and build a community-driven platform that focuses on friend-vetted dates. A few ways it could thrive:

  • Keep it tight-knit: Act as an independent middleman and screen candidates based on social media presence and even friend interviews, before allowing them to create profiles.
  • Learn from others’ mistakes: Existing friend matchmaking options like Wingman have abysmal reviews. Find out what users hate about it and optimize that experience.
  • Intention matters: Sometimes the lack of trust comes from lackluster effort on a date. So add on a resource hub with friend-approved dating spots and activities.

2. Invest in self-love

At least one third of app users have experienced fatigue or burnout from today's dating landscape. Luckily, 80% of 18-25 year olds now see self care as the top priority when dating, and want their prospective partners to do the same.

Search interest in self love.

Source: Google Trends (Six months rolling average)

So, why not focus your business or offerings on helping singles enhance self-love in their dating life? To do this, you could:

📝 Create a dating detox app with quizzes to assess users’ self-love strengths and weaknesses. Then provide a curated list of resources to teach them self care, communication, and setting healthy boundaries.

🤓 Help produce high-end date-me docs. These are long-form profiles that tech workers in the US are using to tell prospective dates about themselves, and they need help.

❤️‍🩹 Niche down and offer self care counseling to divorcees. Divorce is still heavily stigmatized in many cultures, and these people need to build the self-love muscle before they get back into the cruel dating world.

Finally, don’t snooze on those who are enjoying a break from dating altogether. Opportunities abound in the singles market, like consumer-goods-for-one, and financial planning apps (because it can get expensive).

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