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Online dating and matchmaking in China - statistics & facts

In the world’s most populous country, online dating has become a profitable industry as 200 million Chinese are eager to find a partner. For every 100 females aged below 24, there are over 110 males; overall, there are about 32 million more men than women in China. Such a skewed sex ratio has developed owing to the decades-long one-child policy and a preference for boys. The gender imbalance has given rise to dating, matchmaking, and relationship counseling services. The annual revenue of China’s online dating and matchmaking businesses was estimated to be 6.5 billion yuan in 2020.

What are the Chinese dating characteristics?

In contrast to the casual “hook-up” dating culture associated with online dating in the West, a significant amount of Chinese customers use the services to seek long-term relationships and possibly marriages. In fact, family is a very important concept in Chinese culture, and marriage is regarded as the most significant milestone of adulthood. Unmarried men over 30 and women at the age of late twenties are labeled “leftovers”. However, their growing prosperity is making them pickier. The common belief of a prospective partner with a similar social-economic status still exists today. Many Chinese singles, especially migrant male workers, have turned to online dating after being sick of unsuccessful blind dates arranged by the parents. Around 60% of online dating users earned below five thousand yuan per month.

How are the domestic market players doing?

Local companies understand the importance of material security and marriage-oriented relationships in Chinese dating preferences. Questions about personal financial status are often asked in online dating profile settings. Baihe is one of the country’s largest dating platforms that cover one-stop services from online matchmaking and offline events to relationship counseling and wedding planning services. After merging with its rival Jiayuan and reported several times of annual net loss, the dating giant announced to terminate its listing on the Chinese stock market in October 2019. In fact, its major domestic contenders Zhenai and Youyuan had experienced hindrances in the attempt of going public. The prospectus from Youyuan showed a continuous sales revenue loss between 2015 and 2017.

Is online dating and matchmaking a profitable business?

It is hard to say that online dating and matchmaking in China has a positive market outlook just base on a growing consumer size. The practice of tricking consumers into pay with bundling, misleading terms and conditions, and romance scammers are quite serious in the industry. Customer complaints regarding data privacy and after-sales service problems are also common. Besides, online scams organized by criminal groups have been surging in the online dating scene. Market observers have pointed out that clear regulations are needed to protect consumer rights.

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Online dating and matchmaking in China

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