Mobile Dating App Swoon Puts Ladies First
Tagged is taking a “ladies first” approach to its dating app, Swoon. The social discovery site that specializes in helping users meet new people overhauled its mobile dating app on Monday, opting for a new color scheme and design the company believes will resonate with its female users.
Swoon also announced a new “Look Back” feature that lets users recall people they may have accidentally rejected through the app, as well as upcoming female-specific features.
“The demographic that we feel is underserved and we’re looking to develop for is young professional women,” said Molly Messenger, Swoon’s head of product. The update is available for both Android and iOS versions of the app beginning Monday.
The app introduces strangers based on a mutual interest in connecting. Swooners scroll through pictures of fellow app users of the opposite sex, indicating (with a single swipe) whether or not they are interested in connecting. If two users independently show an interest in connecting, they are then able to message one another within the app — a speed-dating of sorts for the online world, similar to services like Tinder.
Swoon’s new user interface boasts larger photos and a new photo carousel that lets users evaluate more pictures of a potential match. If a user changes his mind or accidentally rejects someone, he can recall the discarded profile using the “Look Back” feature (just shake the phone and the rejected profile will return to the screen).
In October, Swoon will debut its first female-only feature: a messaging service that allows women to share a profile via text message with friends. The availability is tied to your listed gender on Facebook.
“If a women is evaluating a guy, she cares a lot more about what her friends think than if a guy’s evaluating a girl,” said Greg Tseng, CEO of Tagged. “Sharing to either get some feedback or introduce someone as a possibility, that’s a very female-focused feature.”
If a female Swooner wants her friend’s opinion on a certain male user, she can send along his profile via text. The feature does not currently support chatting within the app, but Messenger said they hope to bring the conversation into the app at some point in the future.
Swoon faces fair competition in the realm of mobile dating apps, which have generally earned a reputation for a focus on hookups rather than dating. In fact, though, Tinder and Grindr contributed to Swoon’s female-geared approach. Tseng admitted that Swoon jumped into the space a bit too quickly after launching for Android in March, but a look back at the company’s mission over the summer inspired the team to take a new direction.
Swoon isn’t just built for women, it’s also being built by women. Many of the top positions, including head of product, head of marketing, head of algorithm (matchmaking) and head of design, are all female. Even the app’ sname was voted on by females.
“It’s pretty well known in the dating space that if you get lots of women, then you’ll get all the guys also,” Tseng said.
About half of Swoon’s current users are female, but the new updates could bump up that number, according to Messenger. Its average user is 27 years old, a nod toward the company’s goal of attracting young professionals instead of college students.
Swoon is just as clear about what the app won’t include.
“It’s not just about opening the app and thinking, ‘Oh, they have this [feature] I really like,'” Messenger said. “It’s also that [women] aren’t getting bombarded with messages from guys they don’t really want to talk to. They shouldn’t feel overwhelmed or creeped out.”
Do you use mobile dating apps? If so, which is your favorite? Share with us in the comments below.
Images: Flickr, Christopher Brown; Tagged
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