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Dating Apps: Just for Hookups?

More and more single people are turning to their phones to become their matchmaker. Dating apps have become the norm for many looking to branch out in their love life. With so much buzz around dating apps, we decided to dig a little deeper and explore how and why so many single people use dating apps.

In a survey of over 1,000 Americans, we explored what people are looking for when they use a dating app and what kinds of messages people are most likely to respond to. The survey also looked at the types of activities people are and are not engaging in when they make a connection with someone. The survey, using Google Consumer Surveys, had some interesting and unexpected results:

52% of Users Say They’ve Never Had a One Night Stand

A lot of dating apps have the reputation of being an easy way to find a casual hookup. Yet, our findings show that’s not actually the case. Over half of the respondents said they have not had a one night stand with a connection made through an app.

Surprisingly, the survey revealed that Tinder was the most popular dating app, especially among men and millennials, which debunks the stigma that Tinder is just a hookup app.

Breaking it down by region, the northeast reported having the most one night stands.

The lack of one night stands seems to go along with what people said they were most looking for when using a dating app: a serious, long-term relationship. It was the highest response for both men and women.

However, the length of people’s relationships varied. Almost a quarter of respondents said it lasted only a couple of dates. Interestingly, about 13% said they are now engaged or married.

First Impressions Matter

The survey found that how you present yourself is important to other people in different ways. A third of male respondents said the photo was the most important part of a person’s profile. The About Me/Description section was the most important for women.

Both men and women said that the biggest turnoff in a photo was a group of people and not having it clear who the person is.

When it came to reaching out to someone, most people of all ages said they prefer something funny.

One difference of note was that people ages 25-34 would most likely respond to a question or comment about their profile. Responding to something funny was the second highest.

A Look at the South

We also wanted to take a look at how one region in the country compared to the responses of the United States as a whole. We took a look at the south in particular to see how it compared.

The south was higher than the rest of the country when it came to lasting relationships. At just over 16%, the south was the highest when it came to being engaged or married from a dating app connection.

Southerners were fairly similar when it came to one night stands. 50.9% of respondents said they never had one from a dating app—just a point below the national number.

As far as first impressions, southerners also were mostly the same as the rest of the country. Most people disliked group photos and would most likely respond to something funny. Interestingly, southern women said being shirtless was the biggest turnoff in a photo.

When it came to looks mattering, the south was the second highest region behind the midwest.

Dating apps have become commonplace for many people when it comes to their love life. What this survey looked at was how people use them and what people look for in a connection. The results showed that some of the stereotypes, such as being for one night stands, may not be true for the majority of people. Technology may be a faster and easier way to meet people, but most are looking for the long-term relationship.