To be honest, I'm a skeptic when it comes to online dating.
Am I supposed to believe I can find "The One" on an app like Tinder? I spent the past few months examining a range of studies on online dating and marriage to see what I could find. According to online dating literature, dating services can't really improve relationship outcomes.
Despite this discouraging evidence, online dating can work for several reasons.
Research shows no evidence of algorithm-based matching being effective.
These algorithms focus on searchable traits that aren't predictive of relationship success (measured by long-lasting relationships and satisfaction).
John Gottman, a renown expert on marital stability and relationship success, has discovered that in predicting happy relationships, how couples resolve conflicts and whether they exhibit positive affect towards one another matters most.
His research points to interactions, affect and behavior as the indicators of relationship outcomes, rather than searchable traits that these online dating services use for matching.
The platform and scale brought about by these online dating sites have been a huge benefit for singles, especially those with traditionally smaller social networks.
Gian Gonzaga, senior director of research and development at e Harmony, described it as, "Imagine being in a bar and how hard it would be to find five people you might connect with.
Perception also plays a key role in determining relationship outcomes.
When we believe a dating site can accurately match us with our most compatible partner, our likelihood of realizing success increases.
This list was compiled after an extensive sweep of the findings on online dating.