Creating an online dating business plan requires a lot of time and effort on your part. In fact, these are the two keys to making sure that your business will become a success. You may have your doubts at the moment, knowing that dating sites are highly competitive despite criticisms about how dating is done this way. Here are some things you need to know about this kind of business and how you are going to create one.
All about the dating business
Only a few people know that dating business has long been thriving in the past, even before the inception of the internet. If you have heard about matchmakers, then just think about them as putting up an online site where they can conduct their usual business. In the past, they conduct their business through agencies, but these days they do it online. Their agencies still exist, though. In the old days, they had to do a lot of searching for those that would love to become a member of their agency, meet with new clients before they pick up on potential matches. These days, they let the users conduct their search through the database of eligible partners. They are the ones that will arrange their meetings, too.
Added to that, most major dating companies have their niche websites, too. They are designed for people that have specific types, for example like the ones that have a fetish for uniforms. Some of them match up partners with similar music tastes, too. It is because of this reason that even if the competition for this business is quite high, every online dating business will be successful as long as the business owner is committing them to it. Most of those that have put up their own online dating business have claimed that it is one of the most exciting businesses to be in.
Key features of online dating business
The foundation of the online dating business is search facility. This means that the users will input various search criteria into the site such as geographical location, physical characteristics, income, age, etc., then the site will be bringing up results based on those specific preferences. Usually, the first search is offered for free on most dating sites. Based on a report last year, only 15 percent of the users pay for the time they have with online dating websites.
Once they have gone over the search results and have identified whom they want to match up with, most of the websites allow the users to send an email or two to their potential matches. They also have the choice to talk with them through instant messaging. All of this service must be paid, though. There are a variety of ways to send some signs to the other party on how the other is interested in them.
Setting up a dating website
Assuming that you are suited for an online dating website, there are a couple of physical requirements that you need to have in setting up the website – a fully functional computer.
To have your dating website set up properly, it must be done by a well-experienced web developer. There is also a need for you to outsource other core functions of a website such as instant messaging, e-commerce, spam detection and moderation. When the site is published and goes live, you will also need a hosting company that will keep your website online 24/7.
There is also a need for market research even before you launch the website. It is not enough that you have found the absolute niche, but it will aid you by doing a simple Google search of whether or not someone has gone before you in a similar niche. It is also worth your time by speaking to people outside and asking them whether your site would be interesting to them.
Another tip to note about is by putting up ads on specialized internet websites that are relevant to the audience that you are targeting. For example, if you want to set up a website that is based on music, you might want to put up your advertisement on a site for music fans. The same can be said if it is football, nature, etc. If you prefer the old print-based ads, the local papers will also be helpful for you, especially if your website is targeted or based in a particular area.
There are website owners that are tight on budget and want their business to be very cost-effective. If this is your case, you should try to host a night for the singles, or you can also send out a press release. Find mediums were you can advertise your website or business for free. You should also try the local papers if they offer anything for free. Another free way to advertise your business is through social media – which is a highly active area for most people these days because it is where most people are going to.
Since you are still a new website on the internet, it is possible that people won’t last long on your site, especially when there are so few people there. It is worth offering your users a trial period for at least a month or so for the very first few people that sign up to your website.
The cost of setting up an online dating site
As a new business in this niche, you will have to pay a one-off cost for the setup of your website, including processing fees on every transaction including the monthly rental fee. Make sure that you check the details of the hosting site carefully. Usually hosting sites will charge a higher monthly fee on the rent the more members are signing up to your site.
You will need to think of design fees for your website, and the cost of registering your domain name. Make sure the domain name describes your dating site well, or your users might not be able to locate your site fast. The worst that could happen is there is no one that will sign up to your site.