How Much Does It Cost to Make a Dating App?

How Much Does It Cost to Make a Dating App

The question of what is the best way to meet online is a sensible follow-up to that fact from the introduction. Is it a particular website, social media platform, or app? The figures we supplied are solely for mobile dating apps, with a sizable part in the big T. It would have been surprising if there was no space for online dating in our mobile phones, given that every other significant facet of our life has found its way into them. After all, when you’re taking a break from work, commuting, or watching TV, what better method to check on singles than casually?

We looked into the subject of what makes dating apps work in one of our earlier posts. Choosing a suitable person is based on conventional criteria such as gender, age, geographic area, hobbies, and acquaintance goals. The more parameters that match, the more likely you are to be shown a profile of that specific person. Some apps allow you to fill out lengthy questionnaires in order to better decide who is the best match for you. Alternatively, you can apply the filters yourself.

What individuals hope to get out of dating apps

The ability to evaluate people before going out with them is one of the reasons why internet dating has become so popular. People used to be complete mysteries, and deciphering them required a personal meeting encounter. Women’s safety is of particular significance, thus it is the highest priority expectation. Your future dating app’s strength may be the ability to gain some insight into a person’s background through some form of validation.

Another factor to examine is the application’s worth. Aside from evident compatibility, your dating mobile app development must provide a clear and useful solution to the user’s difficulties. The efficacy and convenience of use are the reasons why a dating app’s UX is distinctive and viral. Dating apps, like any other location-based app, offer options at the moment. A person you like and who likes you can vanish from your radar at any time. This fosters a sense of urgency, as well as the much frowned-upon habit of swiping left and right.

Some argue that a real-life group of people with common interests is the ideal location to locate a spouse. Work, interests, and studies are all factors to consider. The issue is that not every activity is sociable, and when it comes to work and school, there’s only one word for it: 2020. We discuss how dating applications genuinely suffer upsurges during quarantines in one of our other articles about dating app development (this time about Tinder’s greatest North American rival – Bumble). It’s much more difficult to meet new people offline when all of your work and studies take place at home and consume the majority of your awake hours. The previous year saw a tiny rebirth in online dating around the world, prompting many entrepreneurs to ask how to launch their own dating app business.

Furthermore, the undeniable advantage of any dating app is that it contains a pool of people who share your goals, as opposed to the reality where just a small percentage of people wish to find a spouse.

So, whatever happens, you’re certain to grow as a person and learn more about yourself. There’s a great piece by John Fischer called “Tragedy, Swipe Left” that shows the whole range of dating app encounters. In a nutshell, users expect the following from a dating app after they download it:

Statistics and trends in the dating app market

According to ResearchAndMarkets, the Global Dating Apps Market is expected to reach $8.4 billion by 2024, growing at a CAGR of around 6%, with annual profits continuously increasing year after year.

Match Group, Inc. (OkCupid, PlentyOfFish, Tinder, and, Badoo, eHarmony, Inc., Grindr LLC, and FTW & Co. are the key players in the global dating apps market (Happn). Match Group, which owns Tinder and PlentyOfFish, and Bumble are the market leaders in the United States.

In terms of dating app industry trends and tendencies, the most important ones are once again linked to alterations in human communication that we all experienced in 2020, all of which are linked to the use of new technologies. We’re referring to video chats and other video-related services that all of the major players have added (or made a core component of their products) in the recent year.

Furthermore, Tinder emphasizes the importance of political topics in its annual Tinder Year In Swipe Report, stating that support for the BLM movement, as well as participation in presidential elections, has become vital for many users in the United States. Integration with social media in the form of TikTok video sharing is another trend. Watch a video with these and other 2020 Tinder trends:

Anyone interested in profiting from dating app development and thinking about how to construct a dating app that will get traction should consider how to take advantage of these and other trends. In a time when swiping functionality is no longer enough, entrepreneurs want to think more creatively. It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to defeat Tinder with a clone, but you have an opportunity to do so with essentially the same functionality but with a distinct advantage. For example, Bumble became so popular as a result of its strategy of giving women more authority, and it didn’t stop looking for new methods to attract new devoted clients. One of their most recent innovations was to offer a new “5 Love Languages” function, which is based on how people prefer to give and receive affection.

There are an increasing number of specialty dating apps centered on a certain interest, ranging from religion and sexual orientation to hobbies, jobs, and political convictions. App developers argue that their products allow for a deeper and more meaningful connection between like-minded people and that they are better suited for those looking for long-term relationships.

How to Create a Tinder-like App

Whatever the situation may be, while Tinder is the market’s darling, it’s prudent to first investigate what has made it so successful. As the saying goes, study the fundamentals before attempting something new. This is as true for dating app development as it is for anything else in life. So, what factors contribute to the success of a dating app?

Since its debut in 2012, Tinder has had a profound impact on the way people think about dating apps. Previous dating website and app experiences necessitated ongoing interaction, which was highly unpleasant in the face of rejections. Tinder revolutionized everything by relying solely on physical proximity as a profile pitch aspect, as well as a swiping logic in which the right swipe means “Yes” and the left swipe means “No,” in which case you won’t see that profile again, freeing you from unrequited love. Simple and ingenious.

Tinder leverages Facebook for authorization and profile screening, which is a smart move given Facebook’s pervasiveness and social media culture. Because most people are skilled at recognizing false and impostors accounts, Tinder passes the initial security check. The app’s numbers speak for themselves when it comes to being a useful answer to the challenge of finding a partner: 10 000 000 000 matches. All of this makes the idea of creating a dating software like Tinder more appealing.

Analysis of Tinder’s features

The price of developing a dating app is directly proportional to the services it offers. Tinder is a great example of how to learn about the fundamental elements of a dating app.

The geolocation service is used in Tinder’s signature approach. The entire user experience is centered on the need to test the waters in whatever situation life throws at you. Once you and your possible match are in the same room, the software analyses your common interests, mutual connections, and other factors.


Because some people have a near-religious devotion to dating apps, spending up to 2 hours each day on them, there must be a financial perspective on dating applications. However, in order to compete, an app must be free and accessible, thus the profitable prospect on the surface is set aside in favor of free-app monetization tactics such as freemium.

Premium accounts are available.

People will only pay for concrete things or experiences in reality. Being a member of a dating app does not guarantee anything, which could lead to dissatisfied clients. Offering paid services, such as Tinder Plus, is one method to make money, but it again deviates from the dating app’s original goal. Providing paid profile upgrades to raise your chances of being swiped right is maybe the most obvious solution here.

Advertisements within the app

As a result, without any viable monetization techniques in the app’s performance section, advertising is one of the few remaining choices. To make money from advertising, some project owners will compromise on the user experience in order to offer paid ad-free versions. With the variety of competition in the dating app game, you don’t want to damage your design with intrusive advertisements.

Affiliate marketing and promotion

The use of relevant information is a much better technique to incorporate advertising in dating software development. You can provide discounts to firms that operate in the dating industry. Coffee shops, jewelry stores, services for couples, and special deals, for example. Tokens can be used to purchase gifts for others. Your app can disseminate event information and tickets, giving you publicity as well as commitment fees. Whatever monetization option arises for your dating app, it must be assessed in terms of applicability.

The overall rule for developing a successful dating app remains the same: make your app flawless in every way and recognition will follow. The ability to go viral attracts a lot of money. After all, with a giant feather in your startup cap, you can sell the software and go on to your next project.

Tinder’s technology stack

Tinder’s visual simplicity is a reflection of the enormous amount of work that a variety of technology developers have put in. A website and an API are also included in the Tinder package. When it comes to Tinder, performance is its most important asset and must be implemented using the most up-to-date technologies.

There is a lot more to building a Tinder clone than just the stack, the APIs, and even obfuscated source code that you’ll need to know. To a greater extent, it is about how users perceive the problems the app helps them solve and how well they understand the technologies that can achieve this. As much as we would like to think otherwise, dating apps aren’t as unique as, say, video games, where you can specialize in training to work only in the video game industry. Instead, a team of app developers with a common understanding of mobile and database technologies can work together to create a successful dating app.

Android/iOS mobile app stack:

  • Swift Objective C
  • Java Ruby/Cucumber
  • Rubymotion Backend/API stack:
  • Node.js JavaScript HTML5 Elasticsearch
  • MongoDB
  • Redis
  • AWS
  • Python Bash scripting
  • Mapbox
  • GoDaddy SSL Website stack:
  • jQuery Node.js Nginx

Dating app UI design

The most striking element of the overall experience is the software’s user interface. Tinder’s early success can be attributed to the ease with which users were able to carry out actions associated with difficult concepts. Tinder simplified the process of making a move by making it as simple as swiping through pictures. In order for a dating app to be successful, it must be built around the concept of a real-world experience, including its UI and UX. Instead of taking you away from each other, it must lead you to the ultimate goal of meeting in person!

Because you only get good outcome messages, this is an incredibly rewarding scenario. The design should represent this aspect of the app by transforming it into a homey, safe environment that invites users into a romantic mood.

Instead of being another time killer or confidence booster, keeping the design and functionality simple can help users become addicted to the purpose-driven experience of a dating app. Some huge corporations invested in (not so) Tinder clones and failed because, in their quest to beat Tinder, they flooded them with alien capabilities and lured users into a new field. The natural experience is inevitably diluted by too much customisation and integration.

There is one more thing. It’s also best not to utilize templates when designing a dating app because, as previously stated, the tendency now is to follow trends and find ways to deliver a more real product, which is something that can’t be done with template designs. Everything counts, from how memorable your logo is to how effectively a designer handles colours to whether you can strike a balance between addressing typical issues in dating app UX (read reviews on popular apps for that) and keeping to tried-and-true patterns. It sounds difficult, and it is even more difficult to accomplish.

How much does it cost to design a dating app and how long does it take?

You may construct a dating app that might reinvent the experience, beat Tinder, and even help yourself discover your better half using an estimated technology stack, feature breakdown, dating app design principles, and a number of existing examples. Now that we’ve had our fun, let’s get down to business and learn more about the costs of developing a dating app. Because any software startup is either a stand-alone business or one in the making, details like development costs and timelines must be defined right away.

The unvarnished fact about dating app development is that if you want to make a dating app like Tinder, you’ll need a substantial budget. A native/cross-platform/hybrid app’s architecture necessitates a complicated technological solution that can take a long time to complete. Some of the components are critical to the app’s performance and are therefore more costly and time-consuming. The mobile app is at the heart of any project.

Timeline for developing a dating app.

  • The development of the basic one-platform version could take up to 1000 hours.
  • A backend takes another 300+ hours to build.
  • UI/UX design for an application took over 100 hours.
  • Around 50 hours of testing and pre-launch.
  • Direct costs of developing a dating app

The cost of developing a dating mobile app is directly proportional to the hourly rates of the developers you hire. You have three options: hire a bunch of freelancers and coordinate/sync their work, engage a local development team, or go all-in on development outsourcing.

  • Freelancers start at $10 per hour.
  • Up to $150/hour for an in-house development team.
  • Outsourced development teams cost between $40 and $50 per hour.

Let’s assume a $50/hour outsourced fee for a single-platform application over a period of 1450 hours. We’re now looking at a cost of $72,500. Outsourcing development is a flexible technique that can cut costs by up to 50% without sacrificing quality or timeliness. In contrast, if you engage a local development team, you should expect to pay twice as much for the same result.

Application development and backend deployment take up roughly 70% of a project’s development time. 20% for UI/UX design and 10% for quality assurance. That is, in absolute terms:

Development of an application:

  • $45 000 for iOS.
  • The cost of an Android phone is $40,000.
  • Development of the backend:
  • $10 000 for iOS/Android.
  • User Interface/User Experience (UI/UX) Design:
  • $5 000 for iOS.
  • The cost of an Android phone is $5,000.
  • Quality assurance engineering (QAE):
  • $4000 for iOS.
  • $4000 for Android.
  • The total cost of developing a dating app is:
  • The cost of developing an iOS dating app is $64 000.
  • The cost of developing an Android dating app is $59 000.

These rough calculations lead us to the most important question after deciding to create a dating app: what are the costs? Consider the following options for a Tinder-like app with similar features, design, and functioning patterns:

A basic dating app can cost $55,000; a single-platform app can cost up to $70,000; and a cross-platform or hybrid app with premium features can cost up to $100,000.

Wear the shoe if it is comfortable.

With all of this in mind, dating apps are more popular than ever, and there appears to be no slowing down, as we have already embraced our smartphones as a means of meeting new people. The current demand necessitates additional effort on the part of designers and developers in order to create a more robust yet easy experience.


If you’re serious about starting a dating app, we recommend working with a reputable outsourced development firm that has an in-house design team, talented back-end developers, a smart mobile development team, and expertise in producing difficult and beautiful apps for a reasonable price.

That is exactly what we are. We have enough experience designing socializing apps to be operationally equipped to take on a dating app, let alone the enthusiasm we have for this fascinating adventure. Are you looking for a company that develops dating apps? Let’s work together to become Tinder’s biggest competitor! Please contact us.

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