Ahhh, Match.com. Let’s tell you everything you need to know before you dive in and join Match.com. Ready?
Match.com is world-wide — not just for Americans!
Match.com, considered one of the top (if not “the” top) dating site in the world, is not just for Americans, I’ll have you know. I once thought Match.com was only an American dating site, but no — if you’re Canadian or from one of the many other countries of the world, there’s likely a Match.com country version for you! And, yes, there’s real people on it?!
Match.com is for everyone
Match.com is basically a site for everyone — any race, any religion (or no religion!), any sexual-orientation, whatever – it’s a generic site that is for everyone. They’ve been doing this for years and are considered the premiere online dating service, along with eHarmony.
For everyone, but you can slice and dice to your heart’s content!
So, yes, Match.com is far from a niche dating site, but you can definitely set your parameters for what you’re looking for in a, um, match – such as appearance, education, career, religion, interests, etc.
Match.com is a known brand — that means they have lots of members!
Match.com is, pretty much, a household name. They advertise heavily online but also have ads on television. What does that mean for you? It means you’ll likely find lot of available singles in your area that meet your criteria!
What’s the downside of joining Match.com?
Honestly, there really isn’t one. You spend a few minutes of your time to sign up and create a profile (and, really, if you can’t spend 10-15 minutes doing that then you probably aren’t ready to find someone to spend the rest of your life with). Then you have access to search the database of eligible singles however and whenever you want (oh, they have mobile apps, too, so it really is ‘whenever’). Also, you can send free ‘winks’ that basically say ‘I’m interested in you’.
Wait… What about contacting other members?
As mentioned above, sending ‘winks’ are free (it’s like saying ‘I’m interested in you’ but w/o saying much else). If you want to engage in a real email (or IM) conversation you’ll have to shell out for a membership fee. Now, these memberships range in size: 1, 3, 6 or 12 month memberships — the more months you commit to, the cheaper it works out to per month. The *good* thing about this system is that you don’t have to pay until you really find someone who you want to converse with. Your profile can stay on the site forever w/o you having to pay — until you find someone interesting (or they find you!). About that last part, as a non-subscriber you are told who has winked at you – but not who has emailed you or viewed your profile (you need a paid subscription).
By becoming a paid subscriber you are able to:
- send/receive/reply-to all messages
- communicate via instant messaging
- see how has viewed/favourited your profile
- remove profiles you’re not interested in from all search results
Ok… How much do these memberships cost?
If you want to have real communication (beyond ‘winks’) on the service, there are two types of memberships (and various time periods you can buy at once).
The “Basic” plans allow you full communication on the service, knowing who viewed your profile, knowing who favourited your profile, and the ability to remove profiles from search results . The prices are as follows (12 month, 6 month, 3 month, and 1 month membership plans — the one month plan is hidden below the regular table, but you *can* select if if you want):
If you want added features and exposure, you can choose from the “Bundle” membership plans, which add the following beyond the “Basic” plans:
- notification that your messages have been read by the recipient
- a highlighted profile in the search results
- “First Impressions” – your profile will be shown to potential matches ahead of “non-Bundle” purchasers
Is it worth buying a Match.com membership?
Well, I can’t say what is best for you, but you can likely get a good idea by searching the database of eligible singles (which is free!). Do you see a few ‘potential prospects’? Then maybe it’s time to give the site a try for a few months at least.
Now, not every one of those profiles will be paying members, so they may not be able to respond to you (unless they pay, of course), but if your profile is pretty kick-ass then they will, right? So, um, work on that profile.
If you need a bit more reassurance, Match.com actually has a guarantee for you. If you purchase a 6 month membership (roughly $100), they will give you another 6 months free if you don’t find someone you’re interested in. So, worst case it’s $100 for an entire year of unlimited use of Match.com – not bad. To qualify, you have to have a visible, truthful profile that has a photo, and you must email with at least 5 unique members each month during the six month period.
About that membership plan you chose…
It *will* automatically renew for the same amount after it’s completed. If you don’t want that to happen you can jump into the settings of your account and change it. Of course, that means once your membership expires you still have access to browse profiles — you just can’t converse with other members until you slap down the credit card again. What I would do is find out when your expiry date is and then set an alarm for yourself a few days before to remind you to think about whether cancelling is appropriate or not. If you’re meeting some great people – even if they’re not ‘the perfect match’ – it’s likely worth having it renew for another period.
Sooo, I’m going to be spending a lot of time on my computer now?
Not if you don’t want to! Match.com has mobile apps for both iOS (iPhone) and Android devices. You can browse profiles and converse with other members right from your smartphone. They also have a mobile version of their website – so if you hate apps or are on another phone OS such as Windows then you have a mobile option as well.
Ok, what does it take to sign up with Match.com?
Here’s the sign up process for Match.com – as started directly from their homepage. Keep in mind that the screenshots you’ll see below are shown for a Man seeking a Woman — and thus will differ slightly for other scenarios.
First off, select who you are and who you are seeking, including gender, age range and location.
Then, choose your username (don’t use your real name!) and password, input a valid email address, and select your birth date.
… and you’re inside! To view profiles and such, however, you’ll need to complete your profile.
You’ll be asked to confirm what you entered before about who you’re looking for, and also set how far away you’re willing to look for a match. Obviously, the larger you make this distance the more matches you’ll have available to you.
From there, indicate your physical characteristics and zodiac sign.
Select your relationship status (never married, divorced, widowed, etc.), occupation, salary (not required!), and the number of children you have.
Now for your habits: How often (if at all!) do you drink, smoke and exercise. Also, select any sports you play.
Select the education level you’ve completed, your languages spoken and ethnicity.
Now more personal questions: religion, political persuasion, and charity givings. Also, your spending habits (that last question being asked about what to do with an unexpected bonus).
Select what kinds of movies you like.
Choose what you consider a great getaway destination (or that you would rather stay at home if you had 2 weeks off!)
Add some local bars, coffee shops, restaurants, or other places you like to spend your time at. Also, what are your thoughts regarding pets?
Indicate your interests, hobbies and favourite books you’ve read.
At this point you’ve completed most of what there is to say about you. It’s time to talk about what you’re looking for in a match — What type of person are you seeking?
The first question regarding a potential mate is regarding physical characteristics.
If you have a preference on the education level achieved of your match, you can enter that. Also indicate any preferences for languages spoken by a potential partner.
You then have the option to indicate any religious or ethnicity preferences.
The “Relationship Status” question allows you to indicate whether are only looking to date those who are single-never-married (for example). Also, whether your match can have kids already – or wants kids. Children are definitely a deal-break issue for many.
Next up in the amount of drinking and smoking that you would entertain in your partner. Also, if you’re super specific on a match making a certain amount of money, here’s your chance to indicate that.
Back to your dating profile: Your profile headline is what usually shows in the search results as well as on your profile. Consider it a short attention grabber. Think about something that really reflects who you are and what you’re about. It’s usually a good indicator of whether someone it creative, funny, quirky, etc.
Now, you have the space to really describe yourself and the type of person you’re looking to meet. Don’t treat this section lightly. This is where your profile can stand out among the rest – and how others can really get a feel for what you’re all about.
Your written profile is now more-or-less complete, and you have the opportunity to upload photos (which you *really* should if you expect to meet anyone). Match.com says profile with photos receive 15 times more ‘attention’. As you can see below, you can upload photos from your computer or directly from your Facebook account. You can upload up to 26 photos to your profile!
That concludes filling our your base profile. It won’t be live on the site until it’s reviewed by staff. Once it’s deemed ‘ok’, it will appear live on the site and you will be notified of such by email.
At this point, you can also answer an optional short image-based quiz to help Match.com give you better matches.
Who do you feel is the most attractive, of these celebrities?
Which body figure do you find most attractive?
Which face shape do you find most attractive?
Which body part catches your eye the most?
What hairstyle do you find most attractive?
What clothing style do you feel your ideal match would have?
Which of these body ‘accessories’ do you notice?
Which of these ‘looks’ do you find sexiest?
Which of these voices are you most attracted to (you click each to hear a short audio clip)?
Which of these types of people do you gravitate towards?
Which of these types of people do you *wish* you gravitated towards?
What can you do as a couple to become closer? Which of these represents that best?
A great date involves…
What type of drink would your partner order – that you find attractive?
So, I sign up for free by creating my profile – What types of search options are there?
You have a more than a few options for how to search other dating profiles. This is one thing Match.com does quite well, compared to a lot of online dating sites.
First up is your regular Search. On the left side of the screen you can select categories and select options to refine your search. As shown, you can also choose “Online Now” and “Available for Chat”. A username search box is also available.
Mutual Match is likely the most powerful of the search tabs. It shows people who you indicated meet your criteria WHO ALSO have indicated your profile meets their criteria.
Reverse Match shows profiles of those whose criteria matches your profile (i.e. you will show up in their search results!).
The Datespark screen is a bit different than the others. It shows members who have proposed types of dates. If those dates interest you, you can get in touch!
Ok, I perform a search and click on a profile, what do I see?
Dating profiles on Match.com have four tabs, as shown below.
The primary profile view, starts by listing what many consider the most important (or “deal breaker”) type items (such as marriage status, whether they have kids, whether they want kids, smoking/drinking habits, etc.). Accompanying that, listed are a few items that you and this person have in common (e.g. “You both love to travel”).
Beyond that, a fully open written section lets the person describe in writing about themselves and the type of person they are looking for. Below that are a listed set of interests. Items highlighted in yellow show where you and the profile match up.
Finishing off the profile is a direct comparison of characteristics of the person and the type of person they are looking for (appearance, lifestyle, background/values). Again, yellow highlighted items indicate how you fit the criteria of the person this profile is seeking.
To me, it’s a great layout to instantly see how you and this person match up.
The second tab shows all the photos this person has posted. Match.com allows you to post up to 26 photos to your profile! For each photo, one can comment directly relating to that photo.
The ‘coming soon’ Q&A section, I’m guessing, will be much like that of OKCupid (who is now owned by the same company as Match.com). These questions will help further refine matches and compatibility.
The final tab shows the messages that you and this profile have exchanged. Sometimes a person will change the photos in their profile and you may not recognize it as being someone you conversed with in the past. You have a tab here to find out just that!
We’ll be adding more to our Match.com review shortly. In the meantime, I hope the above has helped you make a decision as to whether to give Match.com a try! Definitely let us know about your experiences with Match.com in the comments below – Thanks!