Narrowing Your Desired Age Range May Increase Your Tinder Matches – SH Research Brief

Choosing a narrow, age appropriate age Range on Tinder may increase your matches.

Hypothesis

First of all, it’s important to understand a key fact about Tinder, from our unofficial F.A.Q.: Users can only see other users if their chosen age ranges overlap, i.e. you can only see them if they have your age in their set range, even if you have theirs in yours.

Initially, this may seem to contradict the titular hypothesis. After all, it means they are open to dating someone of your age, but there is a caveat to this rule: Many young women will choose a relatively high upper age in their settings (e.g. 45), even though they would prefer someone closer to their own age (e.g. 20). Why? Presumably just in case someone like Wes Chatham shows up in their feed.

So if you, in our example a 36 year old male who is not a Greek god, have your target age range set to 18-30, you may be hurting your attractiveness score. Not because Tinder punishes you for wanting to date young women, but by collecting lots of left swipes from those young women who did not have you in mind when they decided to up their age limit just in case an exception shows up.

This lower score, in turn, means your profile will be shown less often and to less attractive people on average, thus lowering your match rate.

Test

Created a profile, as per the above example, but setting the age bracket from 18 to 39 to only include lower ages rather than search exclusively for lower ages (and mitigating the expected impact). After a week, changed the age bracket to a more age appropriate 25-39 years and continued using the profile for another week.

Result: A 15% increase in received likes and matches, and a perceived increase in the attractiveness of presented profiles.

Keeping in mind that ruined scores are more difficult/time consuming to improve than doing it right from the start, and that the number of likes received tends to decline over time, not increase, I expect this difference could be bigger in alternate test setups, but it is already significant.

Conclusion

Even though the test should be repeated with the inverse setup, or with concurrently running identical accounts, I feel confident enough in calling the hypothesis valid. It’s completely logical and confirmed by at least one test.

Feel free to conduct your own tests and submit the results in the comments below or on the SwipeHelper subreddit, but for now I’m calling it: Choosing an age appropriate age range on Tinder will lead to more matches than including significantly younger ages in the range.

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