Founded by four Harvard students, OkCupid is a free, fun, playful platform that gets results for its users. Highlights of this site include:
- 10 million unique visitors each month and a proven track record of results
- Fast, free and easy signup
- Open to all genders and orientations
Want to try online dating without paying a fortune only to discover that online dating wasn’t for you in the end? Try OkCupid. This is one of the best online dating sites for people who want to try online dating with a website that has lots of successful relationships come out of it. Read our full OkCupid review to see if this is the dating site for you.
Founded in 2004 by four Harvard students fond of thought-provoking questions and personality tests, OkCupid has stayed true to its roots. It’s a free, fun, playful platform that gets results for its users. Our OkCupid review will help you understand the highlights of this service, so you’ll know if this is the online dating platform that best suits your needs.
OkCupid is best known for the unique way that it matches you with other daters. When you first sign up, you’re asked a range of quirky questions like, “In a certain light, wouldn’t nuclear war be exciting?”.
Your responses are fed into an algorithm that matches you with people who answered similarly and who meet your requirements for age, gender, etc. You answer a minimum of 10 brain-teasing questions (though you can answer many more if you choose), add a few photos and before you know it, you’re messaging other members.
With 10 million unique visitors each month, you can’t argue with success — and neither can dating coaches. The site appeals to users in their 20s and 30s who live in metro areas.
One reason for its broad reach is its inclusiveness. In 2018, the site launched an ad campaign that featured LGBTQ couples along with straight daters. OkCupid goes out of its way to be open to all genders and orientations, including genderfluid, non-binary, pangender, homoflexible, questioning and sapiosexual. The result? The largest, most diverse membership base of any dating site in the world.
In a way, OkCupid’s niche is NOT having a niche. The attitude is come one, come all! When you sign up, you’re asked if you want marriage, a one-night stand, short-term dating options, a serious relationship or a combination of these. This inclusiveness helps explain the site’s explosive growth. After all, in Greek myth, Cupid was depicted as blindfolded, and his arrow could find anyone of any preference.
Bottom line? OkCupid is great because it’s free, fun, inclusive and gets results.
OkCupid is one of our favorite online dating sites. Here are some of the best thing we wanted to highlight as part of our OkCupid review:
- A-List option: Though the site is free, the paid upgrades are a good value, such as invisible browsing, advanced searching options and better profile visibility for more potential matches.
- Easy sign-up: You can log in for the first time (all you need is an email address) and be searching for love in about 15 minutes.
- Diverse users: The site prides itself on its inclusiveness, no matter your gender identity or the kind of relationship you seek.
- Innovative algorithm: The question-based approach may at first seem too silly to work, but it starts to makes sense. Let’s say you’re a grammar lover and you’re asked, “Do spelling mistakes annoy you?” You’ll realize the algorithm wants to pair you with another word nerd and shield you from someone who spells at a fourth-grade level.
- Personality-driven profiles: OkCupid lets you fill in blanks such as, “What I’m Doing with My Life,” “I’m Really Good At” and “You Should Message Me If.” These give you a chance to put your wit and personality on display.
In spite of the cons, OkCupid might not be for everyone. Here are some things to keep in mind as you go through the rest of our OkCupid review:
- Clunky interface: Both the desktop and mobile interface could be a bit sleeker and easy to use. Some OkCupid reviews note that it can take some time to get used to the site.
- Free membership limitations: Yes, you can message with members for free, but information about them is scarce; you only get to see their username, photo and location. Plus, you can’t tell who has liked your profile.
- Hit-and-miss matches: As with any free site with a large user base, you’ll get “dabblers” — people who aren’t committed to finding a real connection. This is par for the course. Without a paywall, there’s nothing to weed out lower-quality members.
OkCupid’s biggest draw is that it delivers high-quality matches while also being free. Many sites offer free access, but if you can’t message with potential dates, they’re not really “memberships.”
OkCupid is different. It prides itself on being truly free and usable. It’s among the few reputable sites that let you make a profile and send and receive messages, at absolutely no cost. This is something we can’t rave about enough in our OkCupid review.
Apart from vowing to remain free forever, OkCupid is best known for the series of questions it asks new members in order to help them find the best possible matches.
The questions range from political (“Are you the type of person to tell a homeless person to get a job?”) to playful (“Do you believe in dinosaurs?”) You can also include the answer that you’d like a potential match to give. After you reply to 10 questions — you can answer more if you like — the site’s algorithm will start to match you, assigning each profile a match percentage that reflects your mutual compatibility.
To its great credit, OkCupid has taken measures to address one of the most common complaints straight women have about online dating. Women are inundated with messages from straight guys, many of whom make inappropriate remarks or send inappropriate photos. In 2018, OkCupid made a site change so you can only receive messages from someone whose profile you’ve liked. It’s an effective way to minimize bad behavior while keeping the site lively and fun.
Social Media Experience
Recent tweaks to the site have given it a social-media feel. It’s more casual and browsing-friendly, which invites you to stay longer. The Quickmatch feature is a Tinder-style swiping system. Quickmatch shows you photos from profiles you’ve matched with, and you can either pass or press like to see more. It’s for those who prefer to swipe rather than scroll.
For those who are willing to pay for more bells and whistles, the A-List upgrade is worth a closer look. Prices range from one month for $20, three months for $15 or six months for $10.
If you’re an A-List member, you see no ads, you find out who’s liked you and you get to play with more search options (such as body type and attractiveness). Two more valuable A-List features are a daily boost, which makes your profile more visible. You can also have your profile seen by the most attractive OkCupid members.
5 Tips to Succeed on OkCupid
Every dating service has a few things you can do to help set yourself apart and make it more likely that you’ll meet the person you’re looking for. Here are some tips that will help you get the most out of the site if our OkCupid review convinces you that this is the site you’d like to try.
1.) Tweak Your Profile Often
When it comes to getting matches and dates, it’s not all about your photos and your messages. You have to understand the algorithm.
OkCupid’s algorithm rewards those who not only log in often but who consistently tweak their profile. Go into your profile several times a week and change something. Anything! It could be as small as deleting a single word. This tells the algorithm that you’re an active user, which raises your profile’s status and makes it more visible. And the more visible your profile, the more matches and dates you’re likely to get.
2.) Log In on Sunday Nights
With just about every dating app, Sunday from 7 pm to 11 pm is prime time. Why? The weekend is ending, and generally, people are at home, looking to find dates for the coming week. If you stay logged in to OkCupid on Sunday nights, you’ll net more profile views, which makes it much more likely that you’ll get new messages from interested people.
3.) Play “Would You Rather”
A big secret to online-dating success is to inject some of your personality into your profile rather than having it sound like a resume. One way to do this is to ask a fun “Would You Rather” question on your profile.
Examples: “Would you rather date Spider-Man or Bat-Man?” “Would you rather lose all your money and valuables, or all the pictures you’ve ever taken? “Which of these ‘How to Get a Husband Tips‘ from the 1950’s article do you find the most offensive?” The goal is to make it easy for someone to initiate a conversation in a light, fun way.
4.) Don’t Use Copy-and-Paste Openers
When sending the first message, make it personalized. That may seem obvious, but a lot of online daters — especially men seeking women — send copy-and-paste openers to dozens or even hundreds of people.
The problem? Generic lines don’t work as well as taking the time to find something specific and personal to say.
5.) Make Your Profile Polarizing
A common mistake when it comes to profile writing is being bland, vague, safe — which is the exact opposite of OkCupid’s tongue-in-cheek philosophy.
Instead, make bold, specific statements about who you are and what you want. Include keywords that vividly convey your authentic self, with a little humor as needed: “studly single dad,” “lover of LARP,” “slathered in 17 tattoos.” Similarly, come out and say both what you want (“a passionate love affair”) and don’t want (“not looking to have kids”). It may seem scary being that bold and vulnerable, but it makes it easier for the kind of person who’s looking for your type to find you.
OkCupid Review Conclusion
After our full OkCupid review, we believe OkCupid is the best free dating site out there — a true industry leader. First and foremost, it’s a blast to use. (Even the not-a-robot box that you must check comes with a quip: “Prove that you’re human.”) The multi-tiered questionnaire is fun to fill out, and each question helps the algorithm learn more about you so you can find your next date. For those willing to pay a few bucks a month, the A-list membership is a good value, in part because it raises your profile’s visibility.
But beyond all the bells and whistles, online dating is really about two things: enjoying the journey and finding a worthwhile connection. And by those measurements, OkCupid is a lot better than just “OK.” Try it out by visiting the website.
Have you tried this online dating option? If so, leave your own OkCupid review below.