Build Online Dating App Like Tinder: Features, Cost & Tech Stack

It may seem that the online dating app is overflowing. The market is oversaturated with too many dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, Happn, etc. But what if you still have a worthy dating business ideas?

Many users are living their lives on dating apps with high-quality pairing solutions, representing a big opportunity for developers. Besides, the online dating services market is expected to grow by USD 2.01 billion during 2020-2024, according to the latest market research report by Technavio.

So, entrepreneurs may not want to miss a piece of the chance to enter the market successfully! 

If you’re curious about how to build your own online dating app, this article is all you need. We talk about how has online dating app become so popular. We also look at all stages of must-have dating app features, development process as well as how much does it to build a dating app like Tinder.

Are online dating apps profitable?

As we said, the business of love is so exciting. The online dating industry has completely changed the way we find someone to date. As a business owner, you can refer it to be a goldfish offering multiple money-making chances. Let us proceed with relevant facts and statistics to consider again whether one should build a mobile app for online dating or not.

A quick look at some statistics:

  • Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2020-2024) of 9.3%, resulting in a projected market volume of US$2,505m by 2024.
  • Among millennials, more than 30% of the population has revealed that they did find their life partner through online dating sites.
  • 41% of singles have used online dating apps or sites at least once in their life. Among these singles, nearly 68% of them are males.
  • Along with high divorce rates, people seem to find a new partner through online dating services.
  • Currently, people are more to concentrate on their careers. So, many of them choose dates via an online dating app to save time.

As a result, the online dating app market is still growing. And there is enough demand for innovative dating apps everywhere. All you need to do is to сome up with a dating app design that makes others fall in love with, differentiate your business by concentrating on a target audience and prepare a clear business strategy as well.

How to build an app like Tinder that everyone loves?

Obviously, it’s impossible to answer this question without considering every special feature your dating app will be. In an article about mobile app development cost before, we’ve already described key stages of the process in detail.

First, you should start building a dating app with marketing research. The thing you need to do is to identify and target a specific but sufficient audience. Moreover, there are no reasons to waste time launching an online dating app that doesn’t really concentrate on particular interests, tastes, relationship focus.

To build an app like Tinder, here are 5 simple steps to follow:

1. Market & competitors research

There are a huge number of app-based dating services. But you don’t have to compete with every single online dating app on the market. So if you decide to make a dating app, you’ll need to study the market trendsdemographics including male-female ratio, age, income, location, etc. Additionally, you should find out what they do right and what they do wrong.

2. Competitor analysis

How many dating services out there, besides best dating apps like Tinder, Facebook Dating, OkCupid? For example, Her is a dating app for lesbians. Or another LGBTQ+ dating apps are Grindr,  Hornet, Scruff. As we mentioned, trying to make a complete listlearn from competitive dating apps, their functionality, and monetization methods.

3. App name & logo

A brand name and logo should be easy to remember. But what is most important in online dating app naming?

  • Reflect app core features.
  • Don’t use too many popular words and already existing names.
  • Make it short and easy to spell and remember.
  • Have a searchable keyword for highly shown in the search listing.

You also need to decide your product name sounds familiar to your audience.

4. Dating app design

All people are different, so there can’t be a one-size-fits-all matching on dating application design. Here, we would like to list the most important tips:

  • Use the latest UI/UX design trends like gradient, swipe navigation, storytelling
  • Apply positive and energetic color schemes
  • Design simple and easy-to-use Tinder-like app layout
  • Focus on gestures for app engagement

To make your online dating app apart from the crowd, let’s invest in original features and innovative new approaches also. If you can make the user’s experience more efficient, you’ve succeeded.

5. Marketing plan

How to gain your users and attract millions of others? Don’t forget to create a marketing campaigns. But online dating app promotion has legal restrictions. For instance, you can’t promote your app through Instagram or Facebook, because it is adult content. As a result, you should look for your niche and advertise on specialized platforms.

Must-have features of dating apps

Is it hard to make an app like Tinder?

At first glance, most dating apps look similar. The dating app workflow is registering, searching for partners, choosing between them, and then starting messages. But depending on consumer expectations, the functionalities for a dating app may vary. Here, we cover the basic features for an online dating app like Tinder needs.

1. Sign-in

Users don’t want to waste too much time with long registration. So that, you need to create a quick sign-in feature via Facebook/Instagram, email, and/or phone number. Don’t forget to take care of data security. Users should know that their personal data is fully protected.

2. Dating profile

The users’ profile can be edited and added a person’s information such as age, location, brief description, interests, and hobbies. This is also important to arrange the profile sections in a simple and convenient way to help other users make decisions without hesitation. Then, your online dating app should contain necessary data from other platforms that is reflective of one’s interest – like Spotify, Instagram.

3. Discover people

Naturally, people prefer relationships in which they can meet the partner in person without too much trouble. Not everyone wants to text someone who is located miles away as it is less likely to meet them. The great option is people living in the same city or at least the same state.

For example, Tinder adjusts discovery settings by age, sex, and distance. In freemium, customers can set distance no more than 10 miles. Not only Tinder, but most online dating apps use location-based services to show users the potential soulmates.

4. Matching

The matching algorithms are the heart of any online dating app. Matching isn’t random. Today, it is possible to advance matching algorithms with the help of AI or AR. The artificial intelligence will learn a user’s preferences based on profiles they like and ignore. Furthermore, similar to Netflix, an online dating app based on recognition data and behavior analysis will provide more efficient matching.

Another example is free online dating – OkCupid. This online dating app will ask you questions like “What kind of relationship you are looking for?” and compare your answers to other people’s answers. Then, the percentage match with someone higher.

5. Chat

After users match each other, they can start chatting and get to know each other better. That’s what we use dating apps for. The dating app needs to fulfill their need to know partners with chat, video calls, upload pictures, other profiles.

To improve the experience of using a dating app, Tinder considers implementing GIFS, symbols, stickers, or video calls for more advanced communication.

6. Push notifications

Implementing push notifications in an online dating app is a must. Therefore, users will spend more time inside your app to staying instant contact with potential soulmates. Tinder push notifications when you have new matches, messages, and app updates.


How much money do the online dating app make?

There are many online dating apps being available for free. But app owners still have a lot of opportunities to make money. Below, we will give some tips on how to make a dating app that will make money for you.

1. Advertising

In-app advertising is a great solution to make money if your online dating app is free to download. You can show interesting restaurants or events. Then based on clicks or installs, you will be received from the affiliate company.

2. Freemium

With freemium, users can access to some features in a dating app but need to buy special features. The main objectives of using the freemium model are to spread the product and increase user loyalty.

3. Premium

The best time to adopt a paid subscription strategy is when a dating app already has a large user base. The Tinder app is an example of the premium account monetization model. No wonder, Tinder launched two successful paid subscription programs: Tinder Plus and Tinder Gold. Users can Super Likes, change location and swipe back with a Rewind option.

How much does it cost to build app like Tinder?

Building a Tinder clone app is a process that is pretty similar to any other mobile app development. You need to start with an idea, then market research with an effective marketing plan. After that, developing an app like Tinder native, cross-platform, or online dating website development.

In the previous paragraph, we’ve already described for creating an online dating app like Tinder. Now, we will give you the final cost to build a dating app!

In general, the cost of making a dating app always depends on:

  • The chosen features list
  • App design complexity
  • Development strategy
  •  Number of platforms (iOS/ Android or Website)
  • Locations of a software development partner and their hourly rate

To count how much it would cost to build a Tinder-like app, here’s a time estimate for basic features:

  • Sign in – 50 hours
  • User profile editing – 50 hours
  • App settings – 10 hours
  • GPS tracking – 8 hours
  • Matching – 200 hours
  • Swipe effects – 40 hours
  • Push notifications – 10 hours
  • Chat – 80 hours
  • Payment integration – 20 hours
  • Admin panel – 80 hours

Besides, you’ll need strong backend developers, UI/UX designers, and quality assurance to the list. Finally, you’ll need to hire a dating app development company to outsource.

  • Project management – 100 hours
  • UI / UX design – 100 hours
  • Native mobile development (iOS and Android) – 300 hours for each platform
  • Marketing strategy – 200 hours
  • QA assistance – 220 hours

How long does it take to make an online dating app? On average, a custom iOS/ Android dating app will take 1,460 hours or longer to develop.

Now, let’s take a look at the average hourly rates of the development companies in different regions.


To calculate the final cost, we’ve taken the average Vietnam hourly rate – from $10 to $25 per hour. So the cost to make an app like Tinder for MVP version will start from $15,000 in total.

We hope this article was useful for anyone looking up how to create a dating app like Tinder.

About AgileTech

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