ChristianMingle, JDate enhance online dating services via mobile apps
Dating sites ChristianMingle and JDate have each released new mobile applications to enable their users more on-the-go access to member profiles and pictures.
ChristianMingle, a dating site for Christian singles, created Quick View app, and JDate, a dating site for Jewish singles, created JPix app. Both apps are available for free download in Apple?s App Store and Google Play, but users must be members of the dating service sites to log in.
?Much like the major social networks, this is a natural evolution for the online dating services,? said Matt Garrity, director of business development at Canvas, New York. ?It appears users will greatly value this accessibility, which will likely increase interaction.
?Customized features on the mobile app in tandem with a consistent integration of the desktop features will be well-received,? he said. ?Subscribers are always looking for added value.?
Mr. Garrity is not affiliated with ChristianMingle or JDate. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.
A dating complement
The apps allow users to swipe through profile pictures, read member profiles, favorite potential matches and send smiles or flirts to other users.
While the apps allow users to quickly browse through profiles, they do not have all of the features that the sites offer, such as sending emails, instant messaging and checking a profile activity. The apps are a complement to the full mobile sites.
The dating sites claim to have seen much success with their mobile sites, leading the companies to expand to apps.
Mobile logins to ChristianMingle and JDate mobile sites grew by more than 60 percent in the first quarter, according to Spark Networks, the company that owns and operates both dating sites.
ChristianMingle and JDate have been in the process of executing mobile-focused consumer research to further expand their mobile initiatives.
Other dating sites have already seen success with mobile initiatives.
For example, dating site AYI saw more than a 200 percent increase in application downloads since leveraging mobile app install ads on Facebook (see story).
As social and mobile are intersecting more than ever, it seems obvious that dating sites would flock to the opportunity.
?As the research already indicates, it seems mobile may eventually be the primary point of engagement for these services, so competitors will most certainly follow suit,? Mr. Garrity said.
?Like social networks, it's a personal service that adapts well to mobile,? he said. ?These companies are also not currently constrained by an advertising business model, which will benefit the overall mobile user experience.?
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York