Status quo of Online Dating Sites in China
The data from iResearch shows the market size of China’s online dating sites will increase from 487 million Yuan, in 2010 to 1.9 billion Yuan, with an annual average compound growth rate of 31.3%, way higher than that of the US market which is 3.4%.
1 year ago
As shown in the table, the market is quite mature with a high concentration level. In 2012, the biggest 3 websites take 73.7% of the market, at the same time, the first 10 websites occupied 93.81%.
On the other hand, the business model has not changed fundamentally, almost out of date.
Users don’t stay for a long time
The users of online dating sites have a clear target: to find their Miss. or Mr. Right. So after finding the one they want, they will stop using the site. As Muyan, Baihe (No.3 dating site in China) says, one account usually stay active for 6 months to 1 year.
Few customers are paying user
The No.1 site, Jiayuan, has only about 550,000 paying users every month, with 35 million users in total. The percentage of paying users is only 1.6%
Lack of interaction
This is a typical design of a Chinese dating site: basic personal data + interaction. However, the four options here, “send text”, “say hello”, “send gift” and “follow her” are not enough attractive. When I see this, I feel that the profile is like reading the specifications of a machine.
No follow-up service
After marriage, couples also have needs like consultancy which can be integrated into these sites. While in fact, nobody did it.
Lack of focus
Searching among tens of millions of candidates from different walks of life, from young to old…, users have to spend time and there is always unreal information to care about. It’s a heavy task for everyone.
No relevant service
Most dating sites only offer to-date and matching services. Information about relevant services such as wedding photography, wedding banquet, and honeymoon reservations can hardly be found on these sites.
Last month, a girl from Beijing met a guy claiming himself as a “project manager”. This guy invited her to visit his “project” and during the trip, the girl suffered a car accident. However, she got no care from the “project manager” and even impose a fist on him. According to a survey from Shanghai Morning, almost 30% of users have experienced this problem.
Besides dating services, dating sites are now trying new products around weddings such as B2C shops online. For example, Jiayuan created their online shop “Que” by the end of last year, providing relevant services like wedding ceremonies, and photography.
Marriage and family counseling was recognized by the Chinese government in 2007. With permission from the government, this market will expand faster in the near future.
Baihe began to push its users to put real names and personal data online at the end of last year. In this way, Baihe aimed to save a lot of problems such as identity and credibility for its users. And now other websites are also trying this.
Philip, you have done a great job explaining the culture aspects of dating websites in china and how a marketer can creat a business opportunity for them.
Philip, can I know where you get the data for current position like ranking and market shares of china dating websites?
how much are you ready to pay 😉