Updated: Apr 18
In order to address the issues I saw within the current services available for online dating I completed a large amount of research and allowed this to guide our designs. Dating and relationships are a hard topic to understand and I by no means claim to be an expert. However, there are some stand out lessons that I learned that every online dater should understand before they dive too deep into it. Outlined below are these lessons and the features they fit into.
Why swiping is important?
"Initially, we are attracted to people by their physical appearance and traits we can quickly recognize. But the things that really make us fall for someone are their deeper, more unique qualities, and usually those only come out during sustained interactions" (Modern Romance).
According to the the author of Dataclysm and researchers at Northwestern, the most important factor of matching is looks.
Why we initially hide your matches identity?
The reward system of traditional dating apps is built to emulate a slot machine. The prize of a perfect match is dangled in front of you and you get a giant ego boost with every match. This puts all of the incentive of the app in swiping. By putting that reward of seeing how great your match is after you have a conversation we take change the reward system of the app to ensure you spend your time conversing more than swiping.
By hiding your matches' identities we force you to get to know your match without the superficial bias of constantly seeing their photos. This forces you to get to know your match for more than their pictures and see if any emotional chemistry exists. More importantly this achieves the app's main goal of incentivizing conversation.
Why would you limit the size of the mailbox?
A study by OkCupid found that online dating "women rate 80 percent of men as “worse-looking than medium,”. By contrast, men rate women as worse-looking than medium only about 50 percent of the time."
All of these issues come from having too many options, this is called the Choice Paradox. When your options seem infinite the happiness from your selection decreases in comparison to just having one option. Think about replacing your old jeans. If there is just one option in the store you will walk out with the best option and be confident of that. But if there are tons of different options you will end up pondering if you got the right fit and scientifically be less happy. (7) This is what occurs in online dating and drives up the standards of users to unmatchable heights. By limiting the size of your mailbox we make you consider your options as a finite supply and this also puts users attentions on talking not swiping.
5- Medium - https://medium.com/@chuckingrocks/why-sod-swipe-online-dating-doesnt-work-for-most-people-83d4d2fa3784
6 - Business Insider - https://www.businessinsider.com/online-dating-message-statistics-2013-7
7- Choice paradox https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Paradox_of_Choice