Some 66% of online daters have gone on a date with someone they met through an online dating site or app, up from 43% of online daters who had done so when we first asked this question in 2005. I asked my dad about this experience, and here’s how he described it: he told his parents he was ready to get married, so his family arranged meetings with three neighboring families. That’s how my dad decided on the person with whom he was going to spend the rest of his life.I read dozens of studies about love, how people connect and why they do or don’t stay together.Dating sites can seem almost as daunting as the Internet itself: With so many options, how exactly do you know where to click?This kind of rigor goes into a lot of my decisionmaking.Whether it’s where I’m eating, where I’m traveling or, God forbid, something I’m buying, like a lot of people in my generation—those in their 20s and 30s—I feel compelled to do a ton of research to make sure I’m getting every option and then making the best choice.
Compared with eight years ago, online daters in 2013 are more likely to actually go out on dates with the people they meet on these sites. I am perpetually indecisive about even the most mundane things, and I couldn’t imagine navigating such a huge life decision so quickly. Happily so—and probably more so than most people I know who had nonarranged marriages.The first girl, he said, was “a little too tall,” and the second girl was “a little too short.” Then he met my mom. Let’s look at how I do things, maybe with a slightly less important decision, like the time I had to pick where to eat dinner in Seattle when I was on tour last year.If this mentality pervades our decisionmaking in so many realms, is it also affecting how we choose a romantic partner?The question nagged at me—not least because of my own experiences watching promising relationships peter out over text message—so I set out on a mission.Some 22% of 25-34 year olds and 17% of 35-44 year olds are online daters.Online dating is also relatively popular among the college-educated, as well as among urban and suburban residents.This page is an attempt by me to organize the vast majority of online dating related statistics and facts available on the Internet.Almost every week there seems to be a new statistic produced that tries to top the last one.While statistics can be spun to make almost anything look good, I've tried to report just the basic facts.The data has been gathered from such sources as blogs, online newspaper and magazine articles, company financial statements, company advertising information packages, the actual dating service website, and multiple website measurement services.