POF (PLENTYOFFISH) REVIEW
For those interested in signing up to a dating site, but unwilling to spend money, PlentyOfFish (POF) presents itself as a great option. Its service is totally free unless you want to pay for premium features (hidden behind a paywall), which is pretty cool given the insights it provides members about their own personality traits and compatibility skills. That said, you have to be willing to put up with a seriously sub-par site design to enjoy spending any time on it. And since POF runs primarily on advertising (the pay-off for getting a free service), it isn’t the smoothest experience. But if you can see beyond that, you’re looking at a low-commitment, easy way to meet lots of available singles.
PlentyOfFish has the largest member base out of pretty much any other dating site — their press kit boasts upwards of 100 million global users. Each day, 3.6 million users log on — including 55,000 new members each day — and participate in over 10 million conversations. The site creates over 1 million relationships every year and the site states a couple meets on the service every 2 minutes.
That means a lot of choice and a variety of members, with several ways of interacting with them, which could help to explain how 30% of POF members find their match within a month of using the site. On a side note, only women are allowed to send pictures on POF since too many men were reported to be sending inappropriate content.
Over the last year, Plenty of Fish has released various updates to improve its user experience and stay up to date. All the smart home fanatics out there should be happy to learn you can now access the site through Google Home using Google Assistant, which makes POF one of the first dating sites out there to be essentially smart home-friendly.
The POF iOS and Android apps have been recently redesigned to be easier to use and feature a more modern design, one that is arguably much more modern than the desktop interface. Also over the last year, a new feature called Spark was launched allowing users to quote any part of a users profile to help break the ice and this feature alone has reportedly increased conversations by 15%.
The sign-up is simple and doesn’t take as long as sites like Zoosk and Match.com, but that’s because it doesn’t try to make as thorough of an initial assessment. Once you’ve created an account, however, POF lets you make your own way to its quiz section where it provides you with its Chemistry Test (for compatibility) and a Relationship Needs Assessment (among others) — all valuable tools to honing your search. Additionally, the site will handpick matches for you you based on your answers to the Chemistry Test. Your unique matches are generated from a statistical model based on thousands of successful couples who have taken the test .
Speaking of search, POF helps you develop your profile by suggesting what to write given your indicated meeting goals. If you wrote “Looking to date but nothing serious” in your sign-up questionnaire, it’ll tell you that you will be matched mostly with people who are not looking for commitment — interesting.
To discover others on Plenty of Fish, head over to the Search section by clicking on Search, which contains two search options: Basic search and advanced search. The basic search is more complex than most “basic” searches on other dating sites, and allows you to search based on 14 features including education and ethnicity. The advanced search is a much more thorough discovery option and allows you to search based on not just profile settings but also personality traits as determined by the on-site personality test, such as “easygoingness” and “openness/people dependent.”
Other Popular Choices
Zoosk helps you to discover a wide variety of online daters, all with various intentions. The site features simplistic solutions to fast-track the online dating process, such as a mass-message features and makes it easy to explore its user base as it highlights potentially matches one-by-one, providing a scannable, distraction free online dating experience.
Enjoy a premium online dating experience with a membership to this highly rated, ever-popular dating site. Match has a large member database and is constantly updated with the latest and greatest in online dating features giving you plenty of avenues to discover and interact with others. A subscription gets you unlimited access to all of the best site features and endless options for discovery and interaction.
If you tend to easily get bored with one way of interacting on online dating sites, XMatch provides a platform that will keep you entertained for hours. The somewhat addictive online dating site is filled with members eager to interact and express themselves through sexually explicit status updates, photos, videos, and more. The hookup site even provides an area to get you in the mood through its What’s Hot section filled with top rated ‘sexiest’ member profiles, videos, and more.
An uncensored dating platform you know you’re on an openminded site from the moment you first login to FriendFinder-X. The site provides a sexually exploratory realm for members looking for everything from in-person sexual encounters to quick cyber sex and comes complete with X-rated videos and live model chats to help get you in the mood.
Sign-Up & Login Process
You should allocate between 15 and 30 minutes for signing up to POF. The process is pretty straightforward, and asks you to fill out a mix of both closed and open-ended questions on a single form. At the end, the form supplies a space for you to describe yourself, which requires a minimum of 100 characters. In the fill-out instructions, there’s a warning against any inappropriate content — sexual language will get your account deleted, which is an indication that POF is oriented towards more serious daters and keen on keeping the contents of the site clean.
The login process for POF is simple: just enter your email address or your username and password and voila — you’re signed in. Like the rest of the site, there aren’t any complicated bells or whistles, just the basics needed to get the job done. Making things even easier, when using the mobile apps you can select to have the app remember your username and password so there’s no need to continually login.
Members & Messaging
On POF you can browse the member pool any of seven ways, including with standard or advanced search: by who’s online, by city, by new users, contacts and favorites. Notifications for profile views are located in the Alert Center at the top of the page, while the message center and Meet Me feature are just below. Again, since it’s a free site, you can freely message other members and expect messages in return. As for the first message, expect to receive one from founder Markus Frind. He’ll suggest a few ways to make the best of POF, some of which are listed below.
– Ultra Match is a list of your most probable matches. As a matter of fact, Frind bets that most members end up seriously dating someone in the first 50 spots, but insists on giving people more options for the sake of letting them feel like they took part in the process of elimination.
– Meet Me is a feature that lets you rapidly browse the member pool by showing you one picture at time — you get to choose Yes, No or Maybe (not unlike Tinder). You will be notified if someone says Yes to your own picture and get a notification, but you need to be a paying member to see who these people are.
– The Chemistry Test is where you determine your own compatibility based on five core elements: self-confidence, family-orientation, self-control, easygoingness, and social dependency (openness). This is usually the first thing that new members complete.
– The Relationships Needs Assessment is a quiz of about 50 multiple choice questions designed to get you to better understand yourself based on nine key factors: interdependence, self-efficacy, communication, sexuality, preferred expressions of affection, intimacy, relationship readiness, conflict resolution, and attitudes about love. Overall, I found the assessment to be pretty accurate, and helpful for gauging what one should be looking for in their next relationship given the results.
To delete your account, head to the help section and find the question “How do I delete my account?” and click on the link below labeled Delete Account. You can also head straight to this page. To remove your account, you’ll need to fill out a few fields, including your username, password, and reason for deleting your account.
Searching Usernames with POF
Although there’s a suggestions page dedicated to explaining how to search by username on Plenty of Fish, which tells you to go to the Search section and then click on Search Username, this was not an option at the time of this review. In our research we found that if you log out, reload the homepage, and click on the Inbox (or click here) tab you can run a username search, however you won’t be logged in to communicate with the members you discover.
Safety & Security
POF doesn’t perform any criminal record checks or provide identification confirmation, which makes it difficult to guarantee total safety — but then again, no website can. Like all the others, however, POF warns against giving away too much personal information, and encourages members to report others who are behaving suspiciously. For a full list of tips and conduct policies, check out their FAQs.
The Best Way EVER To Meet Women On POF
With such a huge user pool, you’ve got to work extra hard to get noticed by the most attractive women. Free doesn’t equal easy, unfortunately. Having an arsenal of copy & paste icebreaker messages you can send to any woman who interests you will save hours upon hours of time. That’s why you might want to check out these examples of POF opening lines that work right now.
But even with a stash of go-to icebreaker messages at your disposal, sifting through all those profiles to find a perfect 10 is going to take time. Why not consult an expert and develop an online dating strategy before you jump in the dating pool?
Our experts handle everything from start to finish – writing your profile, choosing your photos, even exchanging messages with the intriguing local women you want to meet most! All you have to do is show up for the dates.
This is POF’s matchmaking offering that shows you the most compatible members specific to you on the site. The list may be longer, but POF claims that you are most likely to date someone who shows up in the first 50 spots of this list.
The furthermore say that it is easy for them to work out who you are most likely to date based on your profile and personality questionnaire and by learning what type of profiles you tend to interact with, but human psychology has proven that if they gave you a list of just the top 5, you would feel constricted and not want to pick those people as you fear there could be better out there and that you need to widen the search.
This is a ranking of all the people that you have had contact with in the past 30 days, ranked by compatibility. POF claims that for 17% of users who left the site in a relationship, the person at the top of the list was the person they ended up dating. This statistic goes up to 50% based on the top 10 people in the list.
Similar to many other apps that focus on finding someone close to your location, POF has a nearby function that ranks users based on how far away they are from you using your mobile phones location services.
This functionality is similar to the swipe right or left method of viewing profiles make popular by Tinder. You are presented with profile pics of other users and asked to tick Yes if you’d like to meet them or No if you don’t. If you both say Yes you are a mutual match and can start chatting.
According to a 2014 interview with CEO and founder Markus find, 85% of traffic to come from the POF mobile app. On July 14, 2015, PlentyOfFish was sold for $575 million to The Match Group. In 2016, POF won the 2016 Dating Sites Reviews Single’s Choice Award for Best Free Dating Service.