Its common knowledge that website testing can bring in double-digit revenue increases, so why do so many dating sites stick with the same design and layout year after year?
My mantra with clients is test, test, test. We learned this from companies like Google, which performed something like 7,000 tests on it’s website last year alone. Google is famous for internal wars over the shade of blue or the pixel width of a box. The takeaway is to be blissfuly ignorant in the beginning. Don’t get hung up on perfection on day one. Get something up and continuously refine it until the tweaking costs more than the revenue it brings in.
Throw up a new template, run a few thousand people through it, try different home page designs, member home pages, search results pages, etc. Read everything you can on A/B testing, there are literally thousands of tips floating around on the web to learn from. I guarantee you will see an increase in whatever metric is most important to you if you work hard at tuning up the user experience on your site.
And yet so many dating sites stick with stale designs that are not responsive to the differences between mobile, tablet, laptop and desktop. Or the home page is exactly the same for men and women all over the world. Such a wasted opportunity to personalize the greeting and increase the chances of converting eyeballs to members.
Read The A/B Test: Inside the Technology That’s Changing the Rules of Business. Also check out this presentation from Startup LA’s Lean Startup group, which explains why network effect startups require a very different go to market approach than “normal” startups. Especially relevant because so many people are saying that Social dating= cheap acquisition costs due to network effect-based viral marketing, or so people would like to think.