In our research, we found that eHarmony has one of the largest selections of specific dating communities. If you’re looking to date within a specific group of people, eHarmony is our top pick for focused dating. With an ongoing national ad campaign, a well-developed site and consistent focus on lasting relationship results, eHarmony is a popular choice.
With this service, it’s about quality rather than quantity. It is difficult to gauge the potential dating pool at eHarmony because you will only see matches selected for you by the service, and these are limited to about nine at any one time. You can receive matches before paying the membership fee, but you must pay to see photographs. If you’re looking for a dating site that lets you easily browse pictures of potential matches, we recommend Match.com, our top pick for dating sites.
If you’re looking to date within a focused group, eHarmony has the best selection of dating communities. You can focus on certain religions, ethnic communities, specific locations and age. If you’re a senior looking to date, or a member of a specific community that makes it hard to find dates, eHarmony may be best for you.
This company’s profile is one of the most extensive found on any online dating site. Think of it as a multiple-choice test with a couple of short open responses thrown in. It's important to be particularly thoughtful when you answer the open-ended questions.
You won’t write an essay about yourself, like on other online dating profiles, so these answers are the only original statements potential matches will see. Along with information about yourself, you will also define your "must haves" and "can’t stands." You choose from intangibles like "verbal intimacy" and "spirit of volunteerism" for required traits and from a host of negatives like "hypocrites," "flirts" and "television junkies" for deal breakers.
If you rush through questions, eHarmony will not let you proceed with the profile. At the top of the screen a note will appear stating that rushing through the process has a negative impact, and you'll have to review or change your answers before moving on. If you just want to answer a few short questions and start browsing potential matches, Zoosk is a better option. It was one of the fastest and most hassle-free sign-ups among the dating sites we researched.
One drawback to the profile maker is that if eHarmony does not like your answers, you will be told they have no matches for you and you can’t move any further. Other sites will suggest matches that might work and generally keep the process going, even if there are no obvious matches.
The searching and matching functions are different from most online dating sites because eHarmony manages both of these features for you. It will only match you with singles that match your profile and will not allow you to search for matches on your own.
Communication replaces searching and matching on eHarmony. You may choose from two types of communication: standard (guided) and fast track (open). eHarmony was founded on the guided communication method but has added the second option for those who are comfortable with writing emails to their matches at the beginning of the process and thereby circumventing the multiple-choice question and answer phase.
If you opt for guided communication, you may express interest in one of your matches and select five multiple-choice questions for him or her to answer. If your match answers, you will receive their answers and a set of questions to answer in return. You may select one of the pre-written answers or answer in your own words. After two rounds of this type of exchange, you may move to open communication.
Alternately, you may choose to request a secure telephone call at any step in the online process. And, at any point, you may choose to put communication on hold or close it.
eHarmony is one of the best online dating sites for general advice. A large section of its website is devoted to advice and dating information. eHarmony has helpful articles about common dating mistakes and how to remedy these mistakes, receive tips on how to act on a date and how to tell if a person is interested in you. You can also take quizzes that will tell you what you are doing wrong, what type of person you should look for and what type of person you should avoid.
eHarmony offers a fundamentally different approach to online dating than many competing online dating websites. If you feel more comfortable with a managed approach and if you’re looking to date people from specific, focused groups, eHarmony might be best for you.
Contributing Reviewer: Angie Parkinson