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Millennials & Dating

As we approach Valentine’s Day, we have a perfect opportunity to reflect on our adventures of romance, love, and dating. Although we each have incredibly unique experiences, research shows that certain trends arise when you take a close look at the experiences of group or even generation. So when we look to Millennials and the influx of technology and communication tools in today’s world, it’s no surprise that their approach to matchmaking is different than their predecessors. This month, BuzzMG took a deep dive into the experiences of Millennials across the United States to better understand their preferences, habits, and desires when it comes to dating in the twenty-first century.
Millennials are mostly making connections online.
A whopping 91% of respondents have used a dating app and only 2% do not know someone who has used an online dating app.  In fact, of respondents who are currently in a relationship, two-thirds met their significant other through online dating. 63% of respondents use dating sites and apps at least once a week. Of all the available dating apps, Tinder was ranked the most used with 74% of respondents who have used the app at least once. OKCupid, (61%), Plenty of Fish (51%), Match (40%), and Bumble (37%) followed.
Millennials are breaking down the stigma that once surrounded online dating.
Although online dating still has a negative reputation among some, Millennials’ own thoughts and approaches toward online dating do not reflect that stigma. 86% of respondents believe that online dating allows people to find a better match for themselves and 98% agree that online dating provides more opportunities for people to date compared to more “traditional” methods. Further, 89% disagree that people who use online dating are “desperate” and 73% disagree that online dating prevents people from settling down.
Millennials appreciate and enjoy dating apps, but still value offline sparks.
Although the majority of respondents use dating apps, only 19% rate their 2016 dating experience as “great” and 28% rated it as “good enough.” One the other hand 42% rated their year’s dating experience as “pretty bad” or “terrible.” Regardless of these feelings, 9 out of 10 respondents think that online dating is generally a good way to meet people.
However, when asked about the best places to meet someone to date, the top selection was “through friends.” Millennials still value the connections they make in person and still hope to meet someone special through their networks. But at the same time, they don’t necessarily want to wait and leave it up to chance – which is why dating apps and sites make it easier to expand their reach while not discounting the value of more organic meetings.
Millennials seek chemistry and similar interests over much else.
When asked about important characteristics in partners, Millennials ranked “similar interests” as number one. “Sense of humor,” “physical attractiveness,” and “sexual compatibility” come next. “Financial status” and “desire to get married / have kids” stood at the middle of the pack. And our respondents ranked “race” and “religion” as very low on their list of their priorities.
Although these traits are viewed as key to a good relationship, Millennials are still finding it a bit difficult to pin them down through the process of online dating. For instance, 82% of respondents have met someone online but then discovered that there was not sexual chemistry when they met in person. 9 out of 10 respondents even admit that they would be interested in an app that could tell how attracted someone is to them.
To learn more about Millennials and Dating/Relationships click here to read our February buzzReport!