Online dating for young adults
It’s too simple to say that, once, college students met each other in person.
College was scaffolded with social activities meant to introduce strangers to other strangers, whether it was speed dating or fraternity-sorority hang-outs.
Two-thirds of the singles and fling-seekers in America’s online-dating market are older than 34, IBISWorld data show.
Pew Research surveys show 45-to-54-year-olds in America are just as likely to date online as 18-to-24 year olds, either because they’re divorced or far from the easier dating scenes of college campuses and first jobs.
Online dating has jumped among adults under age 25 as well as those in their late 50s and early 60s.
The share of 18- to 24-year-olds who use online dating has roughly tripled from 10% in 2013 to 27% today.
Tinder, America’s fast-growing online-dating juggernaut, last week unveiled its first big branding partnership aimed at its core audience of millennial fling-seekers: a neon-drenched video-ad campaign hyping Bud Light’s mega-keg party, “Whatever, USA.” Meanwhile, over at Tinder’s less-youthful rival e Harmony, a recent ad saw its 80-year-old founder counseling a single woman besieged by bridesmaid’s invitations to take some time (and, of course, the site’s 200-question compatibility quiz) to find that special someone: “Beth, do you want fast or forever?
” Both companies are dominant forces in America’s .2 billion online-dating industry, which in the last few years has quickly become a bedrock of the American love life.
Yet for all their growth, the companies have staggeringly different ideas of how American daters can find their match — and how to best serve different generations.
Fifteen percent of Americans have now used a website or app to look for a romantic partner; three years ago, only nine percent had.
As it happens, the only group which has taken to online dating at a rate like very young adults have been older adults.
These people will have dates on a regular basis, and they may or may not be having sexual relations.
This period of courtship is sometimes seen as a precursor to engagement or marriage.