Updated 04-13-2017

Online DatingOnline Dating

Need a date for the holidays? This is the place to start. Maybe you're new to online dating sites, or you've tried one site and you're looking for other options. Our reviews couple in-depth analysis of each site, with the experiences of a male and female tester who signed up for each service and provided us with their opinions. For more information, check out our full reviews and comparisons, as well as our online dating FAQ.

Online Dating Reviews & Ratings

View Full Comparison Chart
Services: Our Ratings: Bottom Line:
Match Rating: stars
Large and active group of users, intelligent matching system based largely on similar tastes and interests
OkCupid Rating: stars
Quirky and straightforward approach to online dating; tons of personality quizzes help match users with local singles
eHarmony Rating: stars
Emphasis on guidance and deep connections, larger users base seeking committed relationships, some people are not accepted
Zoosk Rating: stars
Fun and playful; great social features; premium features somewhat available without a subscription
FriendFinder Rating: stars
Customizable experience, overwhelming & frustrating interface, best for people with flexible relationship goals and a lot of time on their hands
Lavalife Rating: stars
Emphasis on flirting and chatting, good for casual dating, slightly more explicit content, interface cluttered with ads
Tinder Rating: stars
Instant gratification — a simple "yes" or "no" to users' Available upgrades for more substantial features; app-based service.
SpeedDate Rating: stars
Constant stream of speed dates, matchmaking "system" yields poor results, nonstop harassment to subscribe

NextAdvisor Online Dating Blog Headlines

How OkCupid’s Real Name Policy Affects Your Privacy
Recently, online dating service OkCupid announced a change to its username policy which will force users to ditch their pseudonymous screen names and instead use real names on their profiles. Looking at the comments of the official OkCupid post (please note that the post contains explicit language), a number of users are understandably upset over […]

3 Date Ideas for Bringing in the New Year
The new year is here, which means we’re in the middle of peak dating season. Whether you’re looking for love or just looking to have some fun, it’s now the perfect time to make dating plans and start building a relationship. Continue reading for some fun date ideas you should consider heading into 2018. Celebrate […]

5 Things Online Dating Newbies Should Know
While online dating can be convenient and fun, online interactions are in a lot of ways more difficult to navigate. Because of this, the transition to online dating isn’t always as smooth or straightforward as people think. That’s why we’re going over the “rules” or etiquette that will help online dating newbies stand out and […]

When Should You Take Your Online Dating Conversation Offline?
Online dating can be enjoyable and exciting, as it’s designed to be a low-pressure environment to have conversations with new people and find someone you share a lot in common with. But while meeting people online is fun and easy, something that worries many online daters is exactly how soon they should move their conversations […]

Fill out your profile

First you have to let the world know what you're like, and the kind of person you're looking for. Different dating sites handle this differently, of course, but when you're getting your profile ready, it's like getting ready for a night on the town. Choose a photo, fill in your likes and dislikes, and sketch out your preferences. Dating sites like Match.com, eHarmony PerfectMatch.com focus on personality analysis to help develop match recommendations. The trick here is to be honest, both about who you are, and what you want. See some extra tips for filling out your online dating profile here!

Find a match

Once you've filled out your profile, and maybe taken a quiz or two, it's time to concentrate on potential dates. View their profiles and see how well you match up. Unlike dating in the wild, you get a lot more information about your potential dates up front—and you can decide if they're really worth your time. Once you've found someone who looks like a good fit, start the conversation! Online dating sites make it easy and safe to get in touch with the people you're interested in. Wink, flirt, nudge, and message your way to a deeper conversation. Click here to learn the dos and don'ts of your first message!

Date!

You don't have to rush into your first date with someone new. You'll probably want to get to know them a bit better before you make your first in-person contact. Listen carefully to your Skype conversations, and if you're still unsure, learn more via a background check. Listen to your heart when deciding whether to take it to the next level. Once you're ready, take the plunge, and make a concrete plan to meet in person. For more about meeting a potential match for the first time, click here.

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