However, Sam Yagan describes dating sites as ideal advertising platforms because of the wealth of demographic data made available by users.

There are mixed opinions regarding the safety of online dating.

Most services offer digital messaging, while others provide additional services such as webcasts, online chat, telephone chat (VOIP), and message boards.

Some sites are completely free and depend on advertising for revenue.

Others utilize the freemium revenue model, offering free registration and use, with optional, paid, premium services.

Niche sites cater to people with special interests, such as sports fans, racing and automotive fans, medical or other professionals, people with political or religious preferences (e.g., Hindu, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, etc.), people with medical conditions (e.g., HIV , obese), or those living in rural farm communities.

In 2008, a variation of the online dating model emerged in the form of introduction sites, where members have to search and contact other members, who introduce them to other members whom they deem compatible.

Such sites earn revenue from a mix of advertising and sale of additional options.

This model also allows users to switch between free and paying status at will, with sites accepting a variety of online currencies and payment options.

Introduction sites differ from the traditional online dating model, and attracted a large number of users and significant investor interest.

In Eastern Europe, popular sites offer full access to messaging and profiles, but provide additional services for pay, such as prioritizing profile position, removing advertisements, and giving paying users access to a more advanced search engine.

Further, the 2016 Pew Research Center's survey reveals that the usage of online dating sites by American adults increased from 9% in 2013, to 12% in 2015.