Dating sites or dating apps comparison

Dating Sites vs Dating Apps: What Works Best?

Long gone are the days when meeting partners online came with social stigma, and you had to make up a convoluted romantic story to explain to your friends how you and Joe met. Online dating is so popular that, if you are not using online dating services already, chances are someone you know is. Experts even say that by 2050, most of us will have met their partner online.

But before you dive into dating sites reviews to find your perfect match, you may be wondering what the difference between dating sites and dating apps is. Read on to find out what type of online dating platform works best for you.

Pros & Cons of Online Dating Services

Dating Apps

  • Portable and efficient
  • Easy to use
  • Hard to customize
  • Fewer members have serious intentions

Dating Sites

Many useful and customizable features Members looking for long-term relationships Longer sign-up process Generally more expensive

Datins Apps Analysis

You know what they say, there is an app for everything — this is also true for dating apps. Most dating apps will target millennials looking for romance, but you can also find some solely dedicated to dog owners, tall people, and even fans of crispy bacon.

Generally speaking, apps are easy-to-use and present a slick and modern design. Sign in with Facebook in seconds, upload a few pictures, and you may be on your first date that same night. Some apps won’t even require you to write a profile description and those that do only ask for a few lines. Portability also means that you can swipe on-the-go, which is perfect for busy singles.

Social media integration will allow you to see if other members have friends in common with you and to keep up to date with your network. After all, a friend’s approval is almost like a letter of recommendation.

More often than not, dating apps will only allow singles to message other members if there has been a mutual match — as in, they both expressed interest for each other. Some will only let women message first, a refreshing rule considering the amount of unwanted and inappropriate messages ladies receive online.

It is often hard to customize your search results and base your matches on anything other than physical appearance. The speedy sign-up process comes at the price of incomplete profiles — you will not be able to tell much about a member’s personality, interests, political ideology or religion on dating apps. Average-looking people and users laking good photography skills may have a hard time to stand out and make their qualities shine.

Dating Sites Analysis

You will need to invest more of your time in order to set up an account on most dating sites. You will be required to upload a number of photographs, fill in information for your profile, and potentially write short essays about yourself and your dating preferences. Some sites, such as EliteSingles and Plenty of Fish (POF), will ask you to complete a lengthy and detailed personality test before you can start using the platform.

All this extra information results in in-depth, customizable search features that allow you to narrow your results, improve compatibility and ultimately, save time.

In general, it is easier to start a conversation on dating sites if you are an introvert. Dating app profiles do not provide much inspiration to start chatting. On the other hand, comprehensive dating site profiles give more room for originality.

Moreover, many dating sites have icebreaking features. You can quote a passage from your match’s profile, exchange virtual gifts, take a test or play a game to get to know each other better, etc.

Online Dating Pricing

Most people think that the main difference between dating sites and apps is in the price. It is true that generally, apps are cheaper. There is a great number of free dating apps out there, and many are perfectly functional even if you don’t buy the premium version or other in-app purchase options (Tinder is one good example).

Dating websites usually come with a price tag — most likely, in the form of a monthly subscription. The longer you subscribe for, the less you will pay each month. Most sites will give you the chance to try a free plan first, which has really limited features but will allow you to test the platform and see what members in your area look like.

However, if you don’t have a monthly budget to dedicate to your romantic search, there are also many sites that are completely free. You wouldn’t be the only one to try them — POF is the most popular dating site in the world, where you can join more than 100 million users without paying a dime. Most dating sites also offer a mobile app free of charge.

Before you start downloading every free app available, though, it is worth pointing out that free platforms sustain themselves through advertising, and this may make the user experience frustrating or confusing. Moreover, people who pay for a subscription are more likely to be looking for a serious commitment. This does not mean that all Tinder users are just after a hookup and that a account will certainly lead to marriage, but it is a statistic that is worth considering.


Even if it may look otherwise, apps and websites ultimately serve different purposes. If you know what you want, it will be easier for you to find the best dating site or app for your needs.

If you are looking for a serious commitment and even marriage, dating sites probably are the best value for your bucks. If you are after some casual action and prefer to keep your options open, then dating apps are the place for you.

You may decide to invest some extra time and try them both, especially if you are not quite sure what you are looking for just yet. You can also check out our thorough online dating comparisons and blog to get extra online dating advice.