Why Don’t free Sites appeal to younger or lower income users the way paid sites do?

One of the hardest parts about growing plentyoffish  is that it doesn’t really appeal that much to lower income users  or younger users.

Hitwise demographic stats for 4 weeks ending  2/7/2009
12.36% of singlesnet users are under 25
10.15%  of match.com users are under 25
9.65% of  Plentyoffish users are under 25
7.28% of downtoearth  users are under 25.

Hitwise income statistics for 4 weeks ending  2/7/2009.
4.11% of singlesnet  users make over $150,000 a year.
5.05% of match.com users make over $150,000 a year.
6.23% of eharmony users make over $150,000 a year
12.37% of Plentyoffish users make over $150,000 a year.

The recession in the US seems to be growing Paid dating sites in the US fairly quickly  but isn’t really having a major of an impact on my sites growth.   We will still grow at least 80% organically this year  but I don’t think all that much is because of the recession.   The problem being is that most of my users are higher income and aren’t really effected by the current economic problems.     If you were me how would you market plentyoffish to take advantage of the current economic times ?

66 Responses to “Why Don’t free Sites appeal to younger or lower income users the way paid sites do?”

  1. Mark Rose Says:

    It could be, Markus, that you’ve attracted the same amount of younger and poor people, but much more of the richer and older crowd. That would skew your percentages, but wouldn’t mean that you’re attracting any less people in those demographics.

    There are two things other websites offer that you don’t: a flashier experience and a barrier to entry. I’m sure PoF could use a little visual improvement. Graphics aren’t my expertise, but PoF seems to lack texture and warmth. Also, by having to pay money, other sites will restrict users to those who are more serious — women may perceive this to weed out the creeps.

    That’s another thing: when the topic of dating sites comes up amongst the younger crowd, PoF has a reputation for a good place to find a booty call, but a bad place to find long-term material. I’m not sure what you could do about that perception — it’s a fact of how the game is played between men and women.

    The last thing could be the stigma attached to being free. It takes a while in life to recognise value. Rich people tend to recognise value better, too. But the poor and the young will probably head towards buying status rather than caring about value. Status becomes much more important when the general welfare goes down as a society gets poorer.

    Those are the themes that popup to me. Obviously, designing your business around the psychology of the situation is your hands.

  2. Andrew Says:

    I think Mark raises a number of good points, especially about paid sites offering flashier experiences and creating barriers to entry. Have you ever attempted using ads on social networks like Facebook? The marketing consultant I work with has generated good results in the arts and tourism sectors by carefully targeting the right demographics. Granted, advertising on the social networks isn’t known for producing fantastic results (a very good click through rate is less than 1% I’m told), but it’s also relatively cheap.

    My other suggestion would be what you’ve already mentioned, buying an existing paid site or building one from scratch (if you can’t beat `em, join `em) to capture the audience that isn’t in to POF.

  3. Markus Says:

    I think you are right and this is probably the reason….

    **********
    The last thing could be the stigma attached to being free. It takes a while in life to recognise value. Rich people tend to recognise value better, too. But the poor and the young will probably head towards buying status rather than caring about value. Status becomes much more important when the general welfare goes down as a society gets poorer.

  4. Stever Says:

    Interesting points Mark raised there about recognizing value vs. buying status, I’m sure it has a role to play on POF too.

    I have a suspicion that the younger crowd may shy away from a free dating site for reasons of privacy too. They are all on facebook, myspace, etc… would be bound to run into too many people they know on POF so may prefer to use a pay site where it can all remain hush, hush. They’re still young, dating and love are full of shyness and awkward weirdness.

    As for graphics and design I think I’m with Markus on the “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. As a web designer myself I certainly appreciate something a little cleaner and slicker but in the case of POF, being both huge and free, I think the “poor design” actually adds a warmth to the whole experience. It makes POF more about the user experience and interacting with other users and not about the website itself. But then again a super clean, lots of white space, very simple design, much along the lines of facebook or many other of the modern web2.0 properties, might be able to pull off focusing the site on user experience and utility and not about presenting an uber slick, graphic rich, facade that tries to appear more than it is? Is a tough call.

    And then there are the booty calls, yes lots of that on POF, in all age ranges.

    Don’t buy an existing paid dating site, yuk, use the code you know well with POF and make a paid version out of it, promote the heck out of it on POF. But make it a slick looking professional site, the ugly POF design philosophy will not work very well in the pay market.

  5. Stanislav Shalunov Says:

    Age positively correlates with income, so it’s probably enough to explain higher age or income, and the other will follow.

    I suspect that the root cause might well be age.

    Is it possible that younger users simply use MySpace and Facebook more when they want free casual dating site?

    Effectively, your free competitors are Facebook apps, it’d seem to me. And *those* definitely have younger users. I made a few smaller ones. I’m looking at 26% users who are 24 and younger.

  6. Tony Bertolo Says:

    This seems to be a case of skewed observational data. The younger audience generally socializes in the physical plane as opposed to the virtual when it comes to the opposite sex. The older you get, the less you prioritize socializing in that way. General socialization is different. You wont get a high amount of younger users on a site that offers an exclusive socialization like POF does.

    Age generally correlates with income, as stated above. Even moreso, income generally correlates with how much free time you have, the higher the income, the less free time (this is the case with incomes in the 90k-250k range).

  7. Dan Says:

    Because people with money, and young people, do not need help from a dating site to find someone.

  8. Robert O'Keefe Says:

    Markus,

    The fastest and free way to attract the younger crowd is to create something viral in nature. Quote marketing guru Seth Godin “ideas that spread, win”

    You see it countless amounts of times in the younger generation you want to target. Look at the youtube sensations “my new haircut” or probably the best example:

    This video spread so fast that Lil Wayne turned it into an enormously hit single.

    You have to make a video which young coworkers forward around their office, which college buddies forward around their fraternities.

    That’s the fastest and most affordable way to grow your site.
    Feel free to reach out to me anytime to share ideas.

  9. Rob Says:

    BUT is income figure accurate? is it taken from the questionaire on the site which people may inflate to attract more dates: nobody wants to say they are 43, unemployed and living with mom… or is it form some other more accurate means?

  10. justjss Says:

    Markus: What do you think of the sexyads.com move toward “free”?

    http://www.intotemptation.net/2009/02/13/sexyadscom/

    I quoted you regarding 2009 being the year of Free vs. Paid. ;-)

    Adult really isn’t the PoF space, but it’s a (big) niche, same business …

    -jeff

  11. Michael Says:

    I would carefully and with lots of testing and without significantly impacting existing functionality:

    -1- Make POF more visually appealing to the younger, web savvy crowd

    -2- Add select mobile functionality into POF

    -3- Carefully integrate social media functionality into POF, concentrating on conversational features and less on dating features. (Very heard to do. Anyone that comes up with a dating site that doesn’t come off ad a dating site will strike gold)

    3 reasons why:

    -1- The rich guy doesn’t see the need to spend on a dating site when there is a perfectly fine (ok, ugly but functional) free option.

    Much of the advice rich people give on becoming rich is about saving and spending money wisely. In my experience, rich people shop at large grocery and warehouse stores, while poor people do much of their shopping at expensive convenience corner stores.

    -2- Free sites don’t have the stigma attached to being an online dater

    There is still a stigma attached to online dating for many people, mostly older. Since wealth frequently = older, POF has a huge advantage over paid sites here. There is much less of a stigma to registering for a free dating site compared with breaking out the credit card and paying for one. People that pay for a dating site are now really online daters, stigma and all, while people who register and do not pay can convince themselves they are “just browsing”, no stigma required.

    -3- POF is less attractive to the savvy user

    The younger crowd is generally more web savvy, and this is where the poor overall visual appeal of POF is a disadvantage.

  12. Cole Taylor Says:

    You may think I’m joking, but if you are low income, or young, or both, who wants to date? How do you date? How do you impress a girl or guy if you are starving?

  13. justjss Says:

    Being cute, smart and funny will get you further than you’d think, Cole … girls have their own money. ;-)

  14. Mark Rose Says:

    Men mostly want looks. Subconsciously, men really don’t care if a girl is poor. Youth is always attractive to men, as that means more child bearing years. Young women can get dates easily if they’re not too picky (though no woman wants to date a man she sees as lower status than her). Women, on the other hand, are more attracted to status and wealth. They want the protector and the provider.

    Those two facts form the basis of sexual currency. Women subconsciously know by their early twenties that their sexual “price” will go down as their beauty and youth fade. But a man’s ability to be a provider and protector tends to peak in his 40’s. So young women look for the traits that will lead a man to success later in life: leadership, ambition, skill, passion, etc. That’s why young women are so eager to get married: they can get the “most” man now.

    So young people will still have dates if they’re poor. For the women, being poor is irrelevant. For the men, if they can give evidence of future success, they’ll be okay. When times are tough, the attractiveness of success traits is even more pronounced.

    How about older people? After the baby-making phase in life is done, companionship becomes a greater desire. Low-income will be a hindrance for and older male, but as long as he’s passionate about life and his interests and still takes care of the basics, he’ll be interesting to date. If he never grew any balls though, he will be lonely.

  15. Robert Says:

    Little story that illustrates the “perceived value” of things. A friend of mine pulled the carpet out of a rental home, it was in real good condition so he rolled it up and put it out front with a sign that said “Free!”. After two weeks it was still there! I told him to put a sign on it that said $100 and settle for whatever anyone offered. The day he changed the sign it was gone for $50. He made $50 where he thought he would make nothing and the buyer walked away thinking they got a great deal.

    Perception can be reality.

    Obviously I’m making some assumptions in this illustration, but I have put the theory behind it into practice several times and it has held true to this day.

  16. Mark Rose Says:

    So the lesson would be to start a paid site. And there’s no reason they can’t share databases…

  17. dating online isn't cool Says:

    younger users don’t use dating sites because they don’t need it yet. they have plenty of choices around them. also, the kid who uses a dating site would really be picked on….it would be social suicide (ironically). i would just reccomend redesigning the site. it’s a pretty cruddy design generally speaking. I’d hire a designer to really make it look professional. there are tons of free dating sites out there that look more attracting than POF, and you are losing more and more potential users every year because of it. as time goes on and internet users become more internet literate, they are going to expect better design.

  18. dating online isn't cool Says:

    And i don’t think there is a stigma attached to being free–look at facebook and myspace. but there is a stigma associated with poorly designed websites…

  19. ikraam Says:

    Concept Markus, Concept! That’s the answer to your questions.

    Free is NOT a concept any more. Paid has not been a concept for many millenniums.

    You’ve got to get over the free vs paid argument and come up with an original concept this time.

    Remember the phrase, “Innovate or die”. It was coined by the wise for a very good reason. I guess it’s about time for you to innovate. Don’t you think?

  20. CasualEncounters.com Says:

    I’d definitely consider looking into social network advertising. MySpace as well as Facebook. We’re going to be investigating it over the next few months, too. Will let you know how we get on.

  21. Alan Says:

    Yep, under 25, for the majority, you’re still a student, meeting other people of your age easily.
    The difficulty comes when you start to work, you go to a new place, you don’t meet many new people in your job, and most of them are not of your age, it’s when you start to have a limited choice, and you might turn to a dating site.

    My guess is that you would need to “target” the young population. Say that you make a special section, http://students.pof.com, where you can’t subscribe if you’re over 25, because it would be crippy for a 20 yo girl to subscribe to a site where she’s gonna get contacted by dozains of 40yo men.
    The rules of dating are different for young people than older ones, so in my opinion, you would need to have 2 websites. But it’s easy to launch, just take your current one and make a copy with just a limit on the age, and a different template.

  22. Mark Rose Says:

    Alan, that’s an excellent idea. And there’s no reason there can’t be a shared database so people can transition to the “mature” side of things when they get older.

  23. ME Says:

    @justjss:

    sexyads.com is a complete scam. I signed up with stats saying I was fat, bald, old and overweight, and my inbox gets a daily dose of 10 HOT women around 25 years old. NONE of the women are ugly, overweight, etc. And it happens too regularly to be spammers: it’s the sexyads personnel that are pimping bogus profiles.

    I’ve found the exact same thing with loveaccess.com.

    • Whatever Says:

      Sexyads.com is no different from any other dating/swingers site. Of course a money making site is going to post bogus profiles to get people to join. It’s all about the money. As long as they can continue to rake in the dough they’ll continue to post bogus profiles. People will smarten up sooner or later and realize those “model” pictures are not of real women.

      There is one thing about sexyads.com other sites do NOT do. The owner snoops though your personal emails you send to people on their site. It’s sorry as heck to invade in peoples private exchanges.

  24. Cole Taylor Says:

    justjss, I am a girl, I do have my own money too, but you still can’t date in the traditional sense without money. It’s like having pets, you shouldn’t have them if you can’t afford them.

    It’s hard to date without money. There are lots of creative ways to get around this. But, I was commenting on why the post might be true. Who feels like dating if their cell phone was just turned off and there isn’t electricity at home?

  25. Joe Says:

    Hey Markus – just wanted to let you know some things about the 25 and poor crowd. The Myspace generation expects a quality free online experience. Online dating is primarily for people 25 and older who have jobs and only have limited time to find dates. The under 25 crowd wants to have a fun, time-wasting online experience. They are primarily poor college students but they don’t want to go on a dating site to get hit on by 30 year old single dads who can’t find a date elsewhere.

    They are on social networks that are fun and allow them to waste time like Myspace, Facebook, and OKCupid. In addition, the under 25 crowd has plenty of options to date in real life, like parties, random college hookups and bars.

    Online dating specific sites are basically for older people who have trouble meeting people in the real-life bar scenes. They are a bit more desperate to find a date.

    In conclusion, the under 25 crowd has no need for Online dating-specific sites, but want sites devoted entirely and only to their age group. They only want social networking sites that are fun and waste time. They don’t have money to go on real dates like movies or dinner. They do not need to date online like rural or older singles.

  26. Paul Pattison Says:

    Markus,

    I wonder if your free growth vs paid growth has less to do with the economy’s effect on the wallets of customers and more on the effect on the CPM rates being available to sites who’s primary acquisition method is through ad campaigns.

    http://www.marcporcelli.com/2009/02/02/huge-opportunities-exist-in-the-online-dating-space/

  27. Samuel Agboola Says:

    1. Older people tend to be richer than younger people. Extrapolating a higher-than average income from an older-than average user-base is as obvious and misleading as it’s true.

    2. Younger people tend to be more sensitve to good design and are therefore less likely to join a site that looks as basic/rough on first glance as PlentyOfFish.

    3. PlentyOfFish’s selling points are its size, its cost (free) and its features.
    The cost doesn’t impress the young (Facebook’s free and much better featured), the size isn’t impressive (everyone under 25’s on Facebook or MySpace already) and, like its design, PlentyOfFish’s feature set is dated. For older people these things aren’t true. If you’re over 45 you’re more likely to meet someone you know at PlentyOfFish than at MySpace, you probably don’t care if PlentyOfFish has video streaming and a mobile app, and you’re sensitive to cost because the best free sites (social networks) don’t work well for you. So older people choose dating sites based on size and cost and the biggest, cheapest dating site is PlentyOfFish.

  28. Brad Touesnard Says:

    It’s hard to believe that there are people working in IT that still believe in the age old mantra of “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. That’s no way to stay competitive in this industry. Imagine if Facebook was still only available to college students. Imagine if the recording industry had started selling MP3s before iTunes. You need to change to stay competitive, but very carefully.

    Go ahead, hIre a frontend developer to redesign POF with user experience and existing users in mind. But don’t release it to all the users at once. Release it to a small percentage of the users (maybe a demographic group), gather feedback, refine it, and repeat until you end up with a product that the majority of your users are more satisfied with.

    Very little would actually need to be done to refine POF’s design and enhance the user experience.

  29. moviequotemachine Says:

    Hi Markus,

    John from MQM here…thought I’d just let you know my friend signed up just recently with POF at his own initiative (he saw your site on CNN or some major news site. He has never tried any other dating site, and is not the type who does. He has no credit card and not much computer skill, but he is also a great catch for certain women. He put up a very quality profile)…I had to help him with various aspects of posting and uploading etc. He would def. not be on there if it was paid. H e went there b/c of ease of use–free.

    Quick update on Moviequotemachine.com (MQM) FYI please visit moviequotemachine.wordpress.com

    On February 16, 2009 MQM became at 2:40 a.m. CST a WorldWide Ranking Authority on Moviequotes. (LOL)

    John Orie
    moviequotemachine.com
    johnorie@yahoo.com

  30. CasualEncounters.com Says:

    According to industry publications, the gay/lesbian sector is the fastest-growing and most profitable segment of the online dating world. Maybe start pushing these areas more?

    Gay men especially are less impacted by the economic downturn than your average user.

  31. Mikhail Cook Says:

    Markus,

    My name is Mikhail Cook I am the President and CEO of Utxtud8.com. How can I get in contact with you? I would like to speak with you regarding your previous article expressing your desire to acquire dating sites. My email address is mcook@utxtud8.com

    Thanks,

    Mikhail

  32. TS Says:

    I am severely disappointed at this, that as smart as you are, Markus, you can’t figure out your target market.

    The digital dating game has a real life correlation to sex. Sex is a funny thing: if you aren’t attractive in real life, that if you are not being asked out by a person right next to you, you aren’t really going to do well on the web in the digital domain. In other words, your presence in the digital domain is a indication to your real life failure in dating.

    Anyone running a dating site knows that the most precious users are the females in the younger age range. Guys are all over the places. Look at your website. What percentage of female users you have are in the 18-25 range? And what percentage of female users you have are not overweight? Those small group of females that fit my descriptions have high expectations for their lifetime mates that they are willing to pay a monthly premium to meet higher quality guys who are willing to pay for a higher quality date.

    There is no way to overcome the social barrier to dating that is induced by finances. The younger demographic is always focusing mostly on physical attributes, and therefore not going after PoF demographic. Where as the older demographic, who most likely failed dating several times(divorced or single or overweight) have exhausted local potentials and their presence is understandable.

  33. Dave Evans Says:

    I love reading all of the armchair psychologists, some astute observations in the comments. PoF has a reputation now, and changing that reputation is going to be incredibly expensive and take a long time.

    Mark Twain had it right, there are Lies, damned lies, and statistics.

    Do younger users not click on ads as much as older users?

  34. Bill Ayers Says:

    ikraam is on the right track perhaps. The question is who is POF? Define that and put a stake in the ground and promote the hell out of it. Online business is all about identity and trust and less and less about competition and black and white paradigms such as free vs. paid. (And as TS said, focusing on getting as many attractive young women as you can get can’t hurt either.)

    I have a friend that focuses on finding the core brand off up and running successful businesses so they can really leverage that. I have no financial connection to him or his business. I just know he does great work. Check it out if you want. http://fearlessbranding.com/

    Best of luck,

    Bill

  35. mark kelly Says:

    markus, i*ve been using your site for a few months and like it the way it is. in my early fifties, i enjoy the ease of use and the fact that it is centered more on my age group. my space and facebook are for the younger people with flashy graphics and little substance. these days, a business that tries to be all things to all people doesn*t do very well. if you expand, how about a site for the under 30,000 crowd.

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  37. casualencountersblog Says:

    I’ve checked out some of the pay sites, and their common problems are 1) aggressive upselling, and 2) insane levels of featuritis – the interfaces look like Christmas trees on LSD.

    There’s a lot to be said for doing something simple well. See also: unix.

  38. Liath Says:

    Part of the problem, being in the lower income bracket (and mentally younger, I’d say) is that really, I didn’t even know the site existed till a friend told me about it.

    Also, just a random thought, but some of these paid sites do not have some of the restrictions that PoF does (images, and whatnot). It doesn’t bother me much how PoF handles things, but many of the ‘younger crowd’ want to show off alot more than we’d consider tasteful.

  39. Adam Says:

    I find it very hard to believe that PlentyofFish has a Gross Income higher than that of other sites.

    A Quick look at Quantcast can prove this:

    http://www.quantcast.com/plentyoffish.com#demographics

    PlentyofFish tends to be Lower Income, No Eduction (which one would expect from a Free Site—and a Site that pulls a lot from outside the USA).

    PletyofFish MOST DEFINITELY fills a vacant niche (those who don’t want to pay for online dating and those who want a “community” feel (ie the forums)—but to insinuate that it “competes” with the Paid Sites on Higher Income/Higher Educated users is completely false.

    Markus, I”m SURE you know this already, but your competition is NOT E-Harmony and/or Match.com–your competition in Pay vs. Non-Pay.

    Match.com (I’m guessing uses the IAC network to pull up their stats).

    http://www.quantcast.com/match.com#demographics

    Seems to have the “best” (if you see High Income/Higher Education as “best”).

    However, your assumptions are unfair.

    P.S.
    Bill Ayers, with all due respect.

    Why in the HELL would Markus want to PAY to brand his site?

    He’s GROSSING $10MM a year (possibly more now). Without LIFTING A FINGER.

    It’s all organic growth.

    In addtion to that. It would be a catch-22.

    If he “Branded” to drive growth—he’d bring more people (thus less click through), so he’s pumping out more bandwidth for LESS money and MORE Hassle (ie. more “customers” to deal with).

    By “branding”—that in an of itself would KILL PlentyofFish and his model.

    Do you have any idea the Cost to Aquire a Subscriber that E-Harmony uses?

    They spend over $160MILLION A YEAR!!! to acquire approximately 90,000 paying customers! (at any given time).
    WTF?!?!? YES, you read that RIGHT!

    $160MM a YEAR—and at any given time, they have between 72,000 and 90,000 paying customers!
    (E-Harmony YOU MUST PAY–even on their “Free Weekends” to communicate with someone).

    Let’s assume (per month) have have Average paying customer of 80,000. Let’s also assume, their aveage spend is $40/month (f.y.i,. if you do a “Monthly” model it’s $59.95)—but we’re talking average.

    $160MM=$13MM/Month.
    80,000@$40=$3.2MM Month.

    I’d argue E-Harmony has done a BANG UP job “Branding” themselves (ie. Serious Daters, Find your Spouse, Psychological Matching).

    Yet, they are not even CLOSE to meeting their BURN on “Branding”.

    Again, all due respect—that’s the WRONG road to go.

    Now, Markus buys the Dallas Mavericks–sure Brand the HEck out of th team–each additional T-Shirt Sold is $$$$ for NOTHING.

    Not in the Internet World. Each additional user is an Additional Headache!

    Stats from:

    http://www.datingsitesreviews.com/staticpages/index.php?page=Online-Dating-Industry-Facts-Statistics#ref-eHarmony

  40. Adam Says:

    God, I just gotta vent here.

    All these people trying to tell Markus how to run his site.

    Brad Touesnard, come on. Do you realize the BURN RATE that Facebook (your example) is going through.

    They BURN approximately $30MM a MONTH—that’s BURN–they ARE NOT PROFITABLE….They have $300MM in the bank and have PUBLICLY stated, should they not raise another round of Funding, they only have 18-months to survive! WOW–Sounds like a Biz Model I want to MIMIC!!

    Do you want to know why they are BURNING vs. EARNING?!
    Because they won’t leave good enough alone.

    I joined May 2008. I think they’ve done 4-5 MAJOR overhauls/U.I. changes since then.

    THE ABSOLUTE LAST THING you want to do is alienate your User Base by making “changes” to the site (for the sake of making changes).

    Performance tuning, etc. Different story. (ie adoption of new techniques for faster page loading which may require slight redesign).

    However, people “STICK” (and it’s ALL ABOUT STICKINESS)—but people STICK to a site because it feels like home. They get comfortable returning to a location where they know what to expect when they get there.

    Thus Markus ONLY SLIGHTLY changing the Logo is PURE BRILLIANCE.

    I bet you the $10MM he Grosses a Year—that if he did an “overhaul” of the Design (made it all flashy like Match or Facebook)—50% of his Base would fall off OVER NIGHT.

    Look how many Protest Groups (with MILLIONS OF MEMBERS) when up when Facebook “overhauled”—and it’s SURELY NOT providing them any additional ADVERTISING REVENUE—which, last I logged into Facebook—is what they depend on (I’ve yet to pay a fee).

    Again, if Facebook would simply leave GOOD ENOUGH ALONE–I guarantee you their Advertising Revenue would rise.

    But, then again…they have want 50-60 people on Staff that need to look for something to do to keep their jobs. So, you get IDIOTS destroying a BRAND by a COMPLETE Redesign every 6-months.

    PS.
    Next time you walk into your local grocery store, they did a “Major Overhaul” every 6-months so every 6-months you had to “Find” where they put the Milk. How often would you SPEND $$$$ there? NOT OFTEN!

  41. jeffbot Says:

    Adam is mostly right.

    I mean, I have an idea — a simple one — that would increase user satisfaction at facebook, reduce clutter, increase page views and advertising.

    Practically speaking, they might well be crazy to try to implement my idea. They’d be risking the company. All they can try are incremental changes at this point.

    Which is why they will be eventually supplanted, unless they are smart enough to invent the new FaceBook and launch it as a new site. They’ll never build it from within now.

  42. Dating Rules Says:

    First thing, poor young peoples want to show high status, and other thing is the rich don’t brother going to dating sites to find dates, its easier to get anyone due to their higher status. I will probably use some popular social networking sites like facebook, myspace, hi5 etc to promote free dating sites like this.

  43. Rob Docherty Says:

    Marcus, I’ve tried to get in touch with you – I’m not wanting any competitive help – simply to bounce some ideas. Mind calling? I’m in the US – shoot me an email, I’ll respond with my number.

    Thanks.

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  45. Jason Says:

    Im not one for words-so i will get right to it.I am a low-income user.I can honestly say that i am very disappointed with my experience.I havent found anyone in common.And i am doubtful that i ever will.The only thing that i have found,is arguing and rejection.Pof users will not date anyone with at least 2 mandatory requirements:you must have a car,and you must either have a career/or be going to school.Not for the lower dreggs of society.And thats both discriminating,and shameful.Alot of beautiful and exciting people happen to live below the upper crust.An s.s.i/food stamp user would actually have better luck in a place of social gathering like:a bar,a night club, a concert, a movie etc. out of love for my s.s.i homies:stay awy from plenty of fish>its for ivy league bitches.

    • Besonder Says:

      Are you hatin cuz others have made something of their life and you have not? You had choices…you made them. Now accept what goes along with those choices you made.

      and FYI…how do you know those bitches on POF are not on SSI and looking for some man to bring them up?

      just my POV

      PS…do food stamp users and SSI people really have money for concerts, night clubs and movies? When is the last time you looked at the price of a concert or a drink at a club? Concerts run 100.00 a pop, drinks at night clubs 7.00 each, movies with food and beverage can cost someone 20.00+ per person for less than 2 hours of entertainment. That’s 80.00 everytime I treat my daughter and a couple of her pals) I may own a 3000 sq ft home, an additional lake home, boat and 3 vehicles but ever since the economy took a dump, I cut way back on the perks in life. I even canceled cable TV on top of going out on weekends, doing concerts, traveling and going to the movies. Heck, I still have a daughter to put through college. Another reason I won’t date someone who is not self sufficient. Why should I take from my own daughter’s college fund to support a man who never took the opportunity to support himself?

      Also note: In the vent you are on SSD. I was the fundraising chair for adults with MD. Most who were in wheelchairs did work (public school teacher, insurance agent, engineer etc…) until they became to ill to do so.

      There is nothing wrong with food stamps and SSI but unless you are not able to work at all….those programs are suppose to be a stepping stone and not a way of life.

  46. Mark Says:

    Hahah. Jason, a website won’t cure your inadequacies. Only you can do that. You can do that by getting things you lack, or not lettings the things you lack be an issue. Hate to break it to you, but the one thing in common with all the interactions you’ve had on PoF is you. Change your attitude, man!

  47. Fish Killer Says:

    Hey Marcus what are you doing about the serial killer on your fish site that has been killing women. How is it that its not all over the place yet. Your system sucks and it can not stay free forever. You will be forced to charge a fee to stop these maniacs from killing again. I recommend a paid service. Marcus is only init for the money the ads provide for him. I have met marcus in person years back and he really needs to do something before he finds himself in a bad place.

    • Besonder Says:

      Serial killers exist and will be wherever they can be to accomplish their mission albeit the grocer store, college campus, night club, church, a park, the work place, a beach during spring break or the Internet.

      People need to be wise and take precaution to avoid death. Even in marriage….just ask the Peterson’s how they trusted thier son in law Scott. And did you know the number one cause of pregnant women’s death is murder and the baby’s father is the murderer?

      When I worked for my friends night club I saw woman after woman meet a man and go out to the parking lot to burn one and make out or worse yet take the guy home or got to his home. How stupid is that and yet that very practice of behavior still goes on today regardless.

  48. Besonder Says:

    ALL SITES ARE BASICALLY THE SAME. I have been on paid sites and wasted my money and time and I have also been on FREE sites and wasted just my time. Dating sites are like landlords of property…it does not matter where the property is located or how much one pays for rent. You can’t just find a mate by the property cost or location…it’s about who the tenants are as people. Also note…many who are on paid sites and DO NOT have paid memberships are also on POF. I have yet to pull my profiles from the paid sites but I know I am not giving up my credit card again when so many of the members on paid sites can be reached on POF just the same.

    re: POF for lower income and younger crowd.

    Most really low income can’t afford the Internet or a computer nor do they have money to be able to go places while out on a date.

    Most under the age of 25 have very active lives and meet mates though school, work or mutual friends at younger crowd get to gethers. My own kids are 18 and 24 and they have endless possibilities as soon as they become single again. Whereas I am an implant, I am not in school, my workplace is not a 9-5 in one place and I do not fancy bars and pubs unless I am already on a date.

  49. Jules Says:

    It seems obvious to me that the numbers are rather low for young users across the board for several reasons: (1) They aren’t necessarily looking for serious relationships at this point in their lives. (2) They are likely surrounded by other young people in college or entry level professions. (3) There is an abundance of singles under 25. Most gravitate toward dating websites because (1) They have high maintenance careers or children which keep them too busy to date conventionally (both of which are usually not established until later in life). (2) There are not many singles in their age range because most are married. (3) Their friends are all married so it is difficult to meet single people through these avenues. All of these things imply that users above 25 have more reason to try online dating. Young people just have too many opportunities to meet fellow young singles. Of the few that may be on other sites because they are outside the norm, it probably is the interface of the site. I for one, find OKCupid’s site to be much more user friendly. Here, for instance, you can’t edit images directly from the top bar or access “Who Loves Me” directly. Many of the best features on this site, I have stumbled on by accident. Better menus, brighter colors and an altogether more interesting interface would probably increase users from all age groups (though I think young, tech savvy individuals are most likely to be affected by these improvements).

  50. Enric Miralles Says:

    From 18 to 25 years is the most active in personal relationships to people and is usually the time when the life they have more partners. But even in this age is when relationships end more quickly, means that in this range is most useful when the pages for purposes of love and friendship.

    After this period, a smaller percentage of people who recently passed the 30 find it easier to have a formal relationship, this is where they most marriages, many of them for love and some rather because it is time to do . Although the relationships here are more serious than a few problems, because many times the differences in time, objectives, work, make it difficult to get the relationship which ends up cutting little by little. But it also has less activity in relationships, as it seeks to achieve other goals in life and think of love as something that will come, if it arrives and then no way will be covered with other activities.

  51. http://www.loveforboth.com Says:

    I think there are fewer bogus profiles in paid sites as compared to free sites…

  52. http://www.atlantasinglesmeet.com Says:

    I believe a lot of this has to do with expectations and the age you are at life. On a free dating site, generally speaking, the expections of what a person may expect from a partner is lower, and higher on paid sites. Makes sense then why paid sites advertise things such as 5 page personality tests and such. It is so that the people who actually funnel through all that information, are deemed more “serious” and therefore the expectations are higher. On a free dating site, there is normally no advanced matching, and a very quick sign up normally. That seems to give a valid point I think on why members of the younger age range tend to flock to them.

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  62. Butch Says:

    I’m still asking the question is there a dating site that is for people making less then $25,000 a year? I’m a very short Black man who works hard everyday and tries to make ends meet but because of my size 5’3 and age of 60 years I cant find anyone. I am dealing with P.O.F. but no one will respond to my message. I am no where an ugly person and am very energetic, I can pass for being in my earl 40’s and a musician in spare part time. So why no dating sites for us low income lonely men.

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