Online Or Offline Dating … What’s Really Behind The Continuing Boom Of Matching Services

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When it comes to finding a soul mate, recent years have seen a massive boom in the online dating industry and there is no shame to saying you met your partner on a dating site or app. However, is this really the future of relationship building? Select Personal Introductions took a closer look … 

Spin the clock back to 2006 and the mere notion of finding dates ‘online’ was met with a sharp intake of breath. As it happens, although not entirely new to the dating scene, the truth was that those of us brave enough to try to find a match online, simply chose to keep their digital activities hidden from public view. Even offline dating agencies were looked at with those sideways glances, reserved for the most unsettling things in society.

Fast forward to 2016 and this couldn’t be further from the truth in today’s society. Over the past 6 years, online dating has experienced a boom comparable to that seen with the launch of smartphones. Virtually every single adult between the ages of 18 and 40 has experimented with an online dating site or app of some description (and even those who haven’t will be able to reel off a number of them from memory). Some members of the general public and even celebrities have even ventured onto television, exposing themselves to the pitfalls and success of dating.

Lucie Whitworth, Managing Director at Select Personal Introductions commented:

“There’s always a stigma attached to something new, something out of the ordinary. This was certainly the case with the dating services, on and offline. It took a while for it to catch on openly, but as soon as the number of people using these services began to out-weight those that weren’t, the accepted ‘social norms’ flipped and it suddenly became ‘normal’ to find partner matches with the help of dating services.”

Published statistics released by ‘Statistics Brain’ in 2016 reflect the explosion of dating services, with online based e-Harmony having over 16 million members alone. In the UK, the pick-up rate has been even greater with exponential growth seen for several years running. But why?

Lucie explained

“As with many areas in the 21st century, instant gratification and convenient ‘on-demand’ services are part and parcel of everyday life. Pre-selection of suitable dates, prior knowledge of characteristics and traits, along with a guarantee of potential interest from the other party, all contribute towards the high velocity rise of dating services.”

“The fear of rejection is one of the biggest problems people face. Is this person single? Do they want a relationship? Are they really who they say they are? All perfectly legitimate quandaries that put people off making ‘a move’. These are the elements offline dating agencies remove from the equation.”

The problem with an online industry this size, are the issues it attracts with less ingenuous individuals, none committal personalities, fake profiles and criminally driven interactions. Although some are relatively few, these can have a negative impact on the niche as a whole. As an offline dating agency based in the Northwest, Select Personal Introductions has been connecting individuals for almost 20 years. Whilst the offline market is notably smaller than that if online, the benefits of an offline matching service are you deal with real people.

Lucie Whitworth stated:

“Offline dating services can provide the same benefits, if not more, than our online counterparts. Pre-screening members, personally interviewing, selecting matches, checking compatibility and taking feedback means we’re seeing more and more of our matches form long term relationships.”

So what does the future hold for dating services?

The predictions are that dating services, both online and offline, will continue to grow across Europe and the USA. An example of 21st century evolution possibly, human nature and the ever-improving sophistication of matchmaking technologies has secured a future for relationship services moving forward.


Select Personal Introductions offers a unique offline dating service catering for professional people and specialising in creating introductions that really work, by ensuring that our members are who they say they are, introducing them to potential partners who share their priorities and lifestyles. Select Personal Introductions is a Northwest based agency with offices in Manchester, Leeds, Chester and Bolton.

For further information why not visit them on their official site at

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