Feb 12, 2018 | By Sandra Halliday
Big data meets consumer insights. Experience WGSN.
Feb 07, 2017
By WGSN Insider
The seventh annual Singles in America survey by dating giant Match has been released and it offers up some seriously interesting data on the state of dating today.
Millennials are addicted to dating; men have an increasingly positive view of feminism; men find it attractive when a woman offers to split the bill on a date; and good teeth count. Millennials also like to have sex early to check compatibility and lots of men send unsolicited intimate pictures to women.
Those are just some of the conclusions from Match.
The company said the 2016 survey captures surprising data and trends around new dating rituals, the impact social media has had on the dating landscape, shifting gender roles, and attitudes to love, sex, and relationships across generations.
The survey showed that almost one in six singles (15%) say they feel addicted to the process of looking for a date. Millennials are 125% more likely to say they feel addicted to dating than older generations. Moreover, men are 97% more likely to feel addicted to dating than women — although women feel more burned out by the process (54%).
Online dating has continued to increase in popularity, with 53% of single people having created a dating profile. And today, 40% of singles have dated someone they met online, while only 25% met a first date through a friend.
Additionally, 42% of singles judge a date first by their social media posts; 42% also say they judge a potential date by their photos. Next comes their grammar (39%), their teeth/smile (37%), and what they’re wearing (35%).
But while social media counts, not being on social media is a turn-on for 26% of singles. Another turn-on is binge-watching the same TV shows as a date, with Millennials 270% more likely to think it’s hot than other age groups. However, constant social media activity is a turn-off for 50% of respondents. And more than half are anti-phone use during a date with as many as 75% of singles finding it a turn-off if a phone is switched on during a first date.
Other phone issues include 86% of women judging a man badly if he has a cracked phone screen, Android users being 15 times more likely to look negatively on someone with an iPhone, and iPhone users 21 times more likely to see Android users in a negative light.
Both men and women agree that moments that signal signs of falling in love include: caring for someone when they are sick (87%); attending a family event as a couple (83%); mentioning them to your friends (82%); vacationing together (79%); and mentioning them to your parents (76%).
Meanwhile, 71% of men find it attractive when a woman offers to split the bill. Men think that women who offer to pay are just being polite (65%) or that they don’t want to be mistaken for wanting a free meal (61%). However, only 47% of women offer to pay to be polite or to assert their independence. While 74% of women say they offer to pay because they don’t want to feel obligated for anything – a hug, kiss or a second date.
Men like dating a feminist: 59% of single men think that feminism “has changed the dating rules for the better,” saying that dating is now safer (55%), more enjoyable (54%), and easier (49%). While single women feel that the rise of gender equality “has made me pickier about potential dates,” (63%) and “makes me feel more empowered in my dating life,” (57%).
And it seems women don’t use their dating power. Men are leading the way in forging new dating rituals. Single men are overwhelmingly in favour of women initiating the first kiss (95%), as well as initiating sex for the first time (93%). The vast majority of men are also pleased if a woman asks for a man’s phone number (95%), and is the first to call after a good first date (94%). Yet few women initiate the first kiss (29%); few initiate sex for the first time (23%); and few ask a guy for his phone number (13%).
Millennials are 48% more likely to sleep with a date immediately to check compatibility and men are three times more likely to use a one-night-stand as a way to start a relationship. Men are also likely to have sent pictures of their genitalia (47%) while 53% of women have received such a picture but 49% didn’t request it.
Know what’s next. Become a WGSN member today to benefit from our daily trend intelligence, retail analytics, consumer insights and bespoke consultancy services.