How to create a dating website

  • Published on
    07-Mar-2016

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If you are ready to start your own dating site, this manual is for you. This dating startup guide includes advices on how to create a dating website, how to make first settings, how to promote it, attract new visitors and make users come back. Having an idea of a future website is only a small part of the ordeal. It is a long journey from starting a dating website to making it popular. We hope this manual will be helpful to you.

Transcript

  • Building your online dating business: new ideas, how-tos, and

    more

    This start-up guide will help you organize the scattered

    information about starting an online business that you have learnt

    from various sources. We are going to give you step-by-step

    advice on what you need to do to get your site up and running,

    promote it, attract new visitors and make them come back to your

    site. The idea of a future website is only a small part of the ordeal. It is a long journey from starting a

    dating website to making it popular. We hope that this manual will make the process way easier for you.

    This start-up guide has been compiled by a number of experts on both dating sites and marketing, for

    which we are very grateful.

    HOW TO CREATE A DATING WEBSITE

    Preparing to launch

    If you are reading this article, you have probably decided to start your own dating business.

    Where to begin? We suggest that you check out the information below.

    1. Get your business plan straight.

    Decide what kind of audience you are going to target: where they live, where they work, what

    they enjoy doing in their free time and how they date. Adjust your dating site suggestions

    accordingly. Specify the niche your dating site may fill in, be it dating for trekkies, cat lovers or

    people who want children.

    2. Choose a name for your business and find a matching domain name.

    You can browse domains provided by GoDaddy.com or other domain name registrars. The

    shorter the domain name, the better, mostly because they are

    easier to memorize and faster to type. Popular top-level domains

    include .com, .net and country-specific domains such as .uk, .ca,

    .au, .de and the like.

    In the dating industry, it is important that you have a site name

    that makes sense, conveys your message and helps connect

    with your dating audience. Good examples of names include Dating.com or

    Christiansingles.com.

  • The next thing that you need to do is to get a hosting account. It is fine to go with shared

    hosting for the first few months while you are working to pull in new members. You can always

    upgrade your plan or move to a dedicated server at a later time.

    3. Now its time to decide on the website software.

    Our advice: rather than develop customized

    software from scratch, save yourself the time

    and money and go for an off-the-shelf solution

    that you only need to install and set up to get it

    going.

    The thing with customized software is that you

    need to have a very clear understanding of

    what you want to achieve, both design- and functionality-wise, to not overpay and miss the

    deadline. Many people prefer to use from-the-box solutions. Consider using ready-made

    scripts, of which there are quite a few, until you become a weathered veteran of web fights.

    If you plan to start a serious dating service, think about PG Dating Pro software platform for a

    faster launch. It has all the necessary features that people require on a dating site: searches,

    profiles, matches, messages, and so on. The key factor is simplicity. Dating Pro has a fully

    functional administration panel where you can manage users, payments, site design, and site

    texts. No special programming or designer knowledge is needed for the software. You will also

    get free support and installation services which will help a lot while you learn how the software

    works.

    Also, they offer a lot of additional services, like hosting, webmaster services, SEO audit and

    promotion, and so on.

    Now that you have a dating site installed on your server, whats next?

    Branding

    After your site is fully operational and before it is ready to go live, make sure that your website

    looks original and offers interesting content to the visitors - brand your site.

    Have your own logo created: apply it to your site

    using a color scheme that matches the logotype.

    Create inspiring texts that will relate to your

    members (see point 1). Copyright your site. Make

    sure you cover the advantages and unique feel of

    your dating site.

  • Dating Pro solution offers several branding tools, such as:

    - Dynamic elements on the landing page

    - WISYWIG editor to post articles and other text info

    - Logotype editor

    - Banners

    - Background image & main page slider/banner editor

    - Color scheme editor

    Apply the changes to help your site stand out from the crowd and take a stand in the selected

    niche.

    Pilot Groups own customization team offers a wide range of services:

    - modifying existing functionality of all Pilot Group software products

    - developing additional functionality

    - integrating ready design templates

    - creating and implementing new design themes

    - integrating third-party solutions with the product

    - adding new payment gateways to the system

    - anything else you wish to implement

    Making sure your site is SEO-compliant

    PG Dating Pro offers a special SEO module that will help you

    set up metatags for every user page that a search engine

    crawler may be interested in. Metatags and page URLs can

    be edited directly from the administration panel. Before

    you start, do some research to find out more about your

    competitors, what keywords they are using on their

    websites (in Google AdWords) and the like. Compile a list of

    the most popular keywords and use them in your site texts and add them to your metatags:

    titles, descriptions and keywords.

    Consider some rules that will help you keep within limits:

    http://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2012/10/03/keyword-content-marketing-faq ;

    http://www.mequoda.com/articles/keyword-strategy-articles/the-best-seo-keyword-strategy-

    how-to-pick-seo-keyword-fights-you-can-win/

    Some other things to consider when doing the Search Engine Optimization for your site:

    1. Set up unique metatags for the site pages.

    2. Enable mod_rewrite option (Apache web server module) to be able to edit URLs. For

    example, you will be able to make a news page available through the following link:

  • http://www.yourdomain.name/news/news-title.html. Search engines will understand

    the content of an appropriate page and rate it higher in search results.

    3. Ready search results by site members location.

    4. Site analytics code: put Google Analytics code into your site (or code by another

    provider) so it is easier to track relevant criteria in user behavior.

    We also recommend that you sign up in Google Webmaster Tools

    (https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/home) to keep track of your site details.

    If you want search engines to stop indexing certain site pages (such as archives, duplicated

    pages), add links to these pages into a robots.txt file. More instructions here:

    https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/156449?hl=en

    Google offers a Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide that we find very useful:

    http://static.googleusercontent.com/external_content/untrusted_dlcp/www.google.com/en//

    webmasters/docs/search-engine-optimization-starter-guide.pdf

    Other things to consider

    This is a list of things that are essential for the correct site work, and it is important that you set

    them all up before you start to accept new members. The reason is that after your site begins

    to attract lots of new visitors, in-between changes may result in users losing some of their data

    so they will either have to re-edit their profile details, or they will be moved to the wrong

    membership group, and so on. More on that below:

    1. First of all, edit the administrator name and

    email as they will be used in site notifications as

    FROM information.

    2. Select active site currency (e.g. USD).

    3. Activate payment gateways that you will use to accept payments. Make sure that you have

    signed up as merchant. Dating Pro script offers the following integrated options: PayPal,

    Authorize.net, 2CO, Robokassa, Google Wallet, Webmoney, Skrill, offline payments (wire

    transfer).

    4. Edit prices and commission for paid services.

    5. Install countries and edit location info where necessary (for example cities names).

  • 6. Create profile questions and sign up steps.

    7. Create paid membership plans and give access permissions to different membership groups.

    8. Select between gender mode (men vs. women) and general mode (gender is disregarded).

    9. Edit site texts such as terms and conditions, and the privacy policy.

    10. SEO settings (more on SEO later).

    11. If you plan to moderate members profiles and uploads (photos, videos, audio files),

    activate the functionality prior to going live.

    12. Switch on/off additional modules.

    13. Create prices for banner positions and activate this option for site members so they can

    post their own banners (upon your approval).

    14. Sign up for all third-party services that you plan to activate on your website, including the

    audio/video chat provider you selected from the built-in package.

    15. Edit SMTP settings to ensure that all emails and notifications can be delivered from your

    website.

    Depending upon your website idea, there can be more or less things to consider. We gave you

    an idea of what to expect though.

    Now that you have all the preparation steps covered, the next step to take is promotion.

    Dating site promotion

    Your main purpose at this stage is to let your potential customers

    know about your dating website. One of the ways to achieve this

    goal is to collect backlinks to your website. The process is very

    labor-consuming. However, you cannot do without it. We advise

    taking the following steps:

    1. Get links from trusted catalogues: general ones like DMOZ, Yahoo or Best of the Web

    (BOTW), or local ones like Yelp, Google places, and local.com. You will also need to sign up for

    catalogues of dating websites. Request a review from http://www.datingsitesreviews.com/ and

  • similar sites.

    2. Exchange links. When you are looking for link exchange resources, select the websites

    that are relevant to your niche. This means that you should only post information on your

    website that has the potential of being interesting or useful to your site visitors.

    3. Join dating banner ad networks. Check online advertisers like WebMedia or Romance-

    net. What you need to do is simply add their banner to your dating site and they will rotate

    your banner on other dating websites in return. Everyone profits by gaining public attention.

    4. Publish unique articles on your topic. This can be as simple as a piece of advice on how

    to act on a first date, How to Create a Healthy Relationship, Cheap Date Ideas and more. You

    can post such articles directly on your website or on E-zine resources.

    It is very important that the authors copyrights are confirmed. In order to have your content

    linked to yourself, file an article in your Google Plus account and add rel="author" attribute into

    your article. You will find more detailed instructions here:

    http://www.searchenginejournal.com/google-authorship-markup-a-great-platform-for-unique-

    identification/60580/.

    5. Make use of social media. Create a group or page on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, post

    and pin images on Pinterest, promote your website in your local social networks. Talk to your

    users.

    To strengthen your presence in social networks, you can

    use social media management tools like HootSuite.com or

    FriendsPlus.me. They allow posting to several social

    networks and WordPress blogs from one place. Just make

    sure to make each message unique. Otherwise your

    messages may be considered spam.

    6. You may also need to use contextual ads. Contextual advertising is selective and is only

    displayed to website visitors who are potentially interested in the advertised product or goods.

    Thus, only your target audience gets to see your ad which increases the chances of them

    responding to the ad.

    Contextual advertising lets you set up your ads to display them in a certain region, at a certain

    time period, to introduce age limits, and more.

    The most popular contextual advertising service providers are Google AdWords, Yahoo! Bing

    Network Contextual Ads, and Microsoft adCenter. The operating principles are very similar.

    Depending upon the format, there are text, banner, or video ads.

  • 7. Create as much content about your website as possible. By simply communicating on

    forums you can reach at least two goals: learning more on dating site promotion and adding a

    link to your website. One of the ways to do this is to add your sites domain name into the

    users signature.

    Leave comments to blog posts. By leaving comments to posts and articles, site owners may

    make themselves known, as almost any comment in a blog or forum lets publish links to the

    reviewers own web resources.

    Even classified ads websites, such as Craigslist, can be of help.

    8. Use offline advertising: local newspapers and magazines, auto stickers, T-shirt prints,

    promotional gifts, etc. If your website is targeted at a local audience, offline ads may be one of

    the most effective means to promote it.

    9. Do not forget the unfading favorite, the good old Yellow Pages printed or online.

    10. Post success stories of your site members who met each other thanks to you. By talking

    to your site users, you will receive a lot of feedback on the site. Of course, when someone gets

    married or starts dating someone they met online, the happy couple will be glad to write you a

    thank you letter. You can hardly find better information to share with your site visitors.

    11. Recruit Affiliates. Affiliate module of your dating script (if available) will allow you to

    manage your affiliates and draw traffic to your website. Your affiliates register on the site to get

    links and banners that they can post on any other websites to attract attention.

    12. Publish videos. A video may include all kinds of information that you wish to share. It

    can be your site promotion, dating tips and advice, how-tos, stories of personal experience, and

    so on. Video is a nice way to bring your message across as it is entertaining and easy to tune in.

    13. Use coupons and promo codes. For a dating website that offers paid services, coupons

    and promo codes may become another effective means of promotion. There are hundreds of

    web resources out there that will let you post your coupons. Try local resources that are

    popular in your region, or you can go for the better-known services such as The Coupon

    Clippers or Coupons.com.

    Please note:

  • When you post information about your dating website on the Internet, be honest and do not

    use black-hat SEO tools, because it will only get your site banned. Algorithms used by search

    engines are constantly evolving and becoming more and more efficient in working out devious

    methods.

    Keep promoting the site. If people are not talking about your

    dating site, it is not getting that much traffic. The more

    coverage, the more traffic you will get.

    Be patient and careful and you will see a stable flow of site

    visitors. We wish you the best of luck on your way to success!