Online dating helps many find love, says Which?An online Valentine could be a long-term partner

14 February 2008

One in four dating website users have had a long-term relationship with someone they met through a site, a poll by Which? Online has found.

And many more found some level of success from online dating. Nearly three-quarters in our poll of 997 dating site users had had at least one date out of an online introduction service.

Match.com and Datingdirect were the most commonly used sites by those polled, but Gaydar.co.uk received the best customer satisfaction score, at 67%.

Satisfaction

Gaydar - a site for gay people - got the maximum rating for being easy to use. People found it easy to create and update a profile on the site, and to contact potential dates. 

Safety of personal data was rated as the most important factor when using an online dating site - more than three-quarters of users said this was very important. 

Which? Online Editor Malcolm Coles said: ‘If you’re single and want to have some fun on Valentine’s Day, then it might be worth giving online dating a go - impressively almost three-quarters of the people we spoke to have had some level of success with someone they met online.

‘Like any other purchase, though, users should remember to shop around to find the best site to suit their needs and take care with any personal information that they reveal.’

Shop around

If you want to give online dating a go, we'd recommend:

  • shopping around - don't just plump for the first site you see
  • choose a memorable username – it’s the first thing that users notice
  • start with the attitude that online dating is a way to meet new and interesting people but necessarily your future partner
  • be prepared for the fact that people you chat to online are probably playing the field, so don't be afraid to do the same.