Miller agreed, saying: “And it accomplished what I wanted to do, which was go on a lot of dates."While online dating sites give people another tool to find potential mates, the dates themselves are not very different, other than maybe knowing a bit more about the other person before officially meeting.“It’s no different than if you meet someone on the street.But even if algorithms aren’t the answer, there’s no doubt that online dating has led to successful relationships — my own included.The question is: Are those first dates and relationships really any different from connections made in more traditional ways? Even though the number of budding Internet relationships is increasing, the overall rate of partnership is not increasing at all.The good news is that it’s probably only going to get better with time.Slater believes that, as the popularity of mobile dating apps increases, sites will learn how to gather more valuable information.Between 20, the number of people using online dating sites doubled, from 20 million to 40 million, and about one third of America’s single people participated in some sort of online dating last year.But despite these numbers, it’s unclear if online dating is any more effective than, or really any different from, meeting someone offline.
There’s just a disconnect between what social science says is actually possible, and what the sites say they can do,” said Slater.
Experts say online dating sites see a huge traffic increase between Christmas and Valentine’s Day.
With the number of visitors these sites get each month, that increase is pretty significant: Some current estimates report between 10.5 and 23.8 million unique visitors per month for two major dating sites.
It doesn’t help that these algorithms are closely guarded trade secrets.
The majority of the surveys, studies, and reports evaluating online dating sites’ efficacy are paid for by the companies themselves, leading to some possibility for biased results.