Okcupid is a testing site used mostly by myspace and social networking users and they recently tried to “rebrand” themselves as a dating site. According to the latest press release and discussions one would think the site is a growing dating site.
I’ve looked into personality testing, and from what i’ve heard from sites using it, if tests are not part of the signup process less then 10% of daters are willing to use it. Okcupid claims that 200 million questions have been answered but they don’t say those where “daters” or even members.
I wanted to see if there is something i’m missing. On the top all time tests for okcupid the following tests are shown. I’m not exactly sure how grammar tests allow people to meet their perfect match.
1. Would you like to see my boobs 214,406 takers 10 questions = 2,144,060 questions answered
“The Am I Gay? Test” 210826 takers 25 questions =5,270,650 questions answered
“The Tits, Ass, and Cuteness Test” 492057 takers 18 questions =8,857,026 questions answered
“The Personality Defect Test” 664101 takers 28 questions = 18,594,828 questions answered
“The Commonly Confused Words Test” 676672 takers 40 questions 27,066,880 questions answered
“The Nerd? Geek? or Dork? Test ” 540326 takers 60 questions 32,419,560 questions answered
“The 3 Variable Funny Test” 533540 takers 23 questions 12,271,420 questions answered
2. My next step was to check out technorati and see what users post. http://www.technorati.com/search/okcupid.com There is nearly a post a minute and it seems like a lot of users under the age of 18 are taking these tests. You don’t need to signup to take a test so that would explain it. I went through a few hundred posts and I couldn’t find a single instance of where someone talked about using okcupid as a dating site or even being a member. They just used the site to take tests.
Over all I just don’t get okcupid, http://www.quantcast.com/okcupid.com says everyone on the site is pretty much 18-24 which is not the traditional Dating market. Although okcupid claims they are the biggest free site, no ranking system shows them having any meaningful marketshare. Right now its a massive testing site for the under 25 crowd using social networks with a dating component. As I said before traditional sites who’ve tried adding tests only saw a sub 10% uptake rate, I can’t see that being any different with okcupid. To me it seems like 2 seperate sites that attract totally different users are trying to be merged into one. It makes me think emode version 2.
The other players like matchdoctor and justsayhi etc have a far more straight forward business and target the mainstream. The sites are clear and consistent in what the main purpose of the site is. I see them having a bigger impact over the long term for that reason.