Dating apps are a gold mine for developers. Facebook arguably took off for exactly that reason, since it let you see someone’s photo and learn about them before you went out with them. There’s plenty of room for new apps, since people tend to prefer new apps with a different membership than those that have fallen short for them.
But how do you build your one? Here’s everything you need to know about building your own dating app.
Know Your Niche
Dating apps have proliferated. This doesn’t mean your app can’t succeed. Instead, you need to find a niche that needs to be filled, whether it is a small demographic group that has trouble meeting or people who share a certain interest. Once you find that niche, then you need to design and build the app.
Know What Matters Most to Your Audience
Dating apps have a few essential features. You need the person’s name or handle visible to those who are interested in them. There’s a delicate balance between privacy and honesty. For example, site members may not want to list their full last name in case it attracts a stalker or leads to targeted phishing attacks. On the other hand, you don’t want people wasting time on junk profiles that are obvious when the name is that of a historical figure or current celebrity.
Photos are essential. Require photos to have a minimum resolution to force them to upload high quality images. You’ll get points if you can verify the photos haven’t been scraped off the internet, since this can identify scammers using someone else’s photos. Provide drop boxes and filters so that people can sort their potential matches based on what matters for them instead of expecting users to read through everyone’s wall of text.
Add features that are useful to your customers. For example, let them search for people in their immediate area in the app or give them the ability to limit profiles to people who are actually within thirty miles of them.
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
Don’t build an app that is just like everyone else’s, though you can adopt popular features like “swipe right”. Note that you don’t need to know how to create a dating app. Instead, you can hire app developers to build it for you. Let them do the actual coding and app packaging. You only need to provide the functional requirements and test it afterward.
Consider working with app developers who get your feedback at every stage of the process. While this is more work on your part, it can save you money because it is easier to make changes earlier in the development process than when you have issues with a completed app.
Understand Your Business Model
How are you going to monetize your app? Will you expect people to pay for it? Then you’ll need enough members at first to make it worth the second round of members paying for. Are you going to run ads inside of the dating app? It doesn’t matter if you’ll be running ads for restaurants in the area or romance novels. Just make sure it doesn’t undermine the purpose of the app. For example, you could lose your customers if they’re getting ads for rival services or adult content.
Make Strategic Improvements
It isn’t enough to recruit members. You need to keep an eye out for spammers and scammers, though it can be hard to automate filters to keep them to a minimum. Come up with a way to moderate profiles and content. And come up with strategic improvements that make things easier for your customers.
You could solicit customer feedback for improvements. Or you can add new features like short video clips only available to paying members or behavior matching algorithms that learn what they like and recommend better matches.
Featured photo by Pexels (cottonbro).