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How Several Weeks on the Popular Dating App Improved My Web Marketing Game

SEO Marketing

You might think that popular dating app Tinder has little in common with good SEO marketing; SEO is about search engine optimization, and the app—which presents you profiles of nearby people so that you can say yes or no to talking to them—has no search function. But when I used Tinder as a social catalyst this summer, I found it full of great examples of some basic web marketing principles. For example…

Local Optimization

Tinder uses your GPS to find matches; how far away is up to you. I didn’t know this, and kept wondering why half the women I saw lived 100 kilometres (or more) away when I wanted to meet people in Ottawa.

Optimizing for local search is important if you have a limited service area because it keeps you higher in local searches than global ones. If you don’t keep your address up-to-date on Google+ and use geomodifier keywords, then like me you’ll end up with a lot of matches that are too far away to do anything about.

Appearance Matters

On Tinder, you’re forced to see how shallow you really are. Try it for a week and see the endless array of dude-bro types holding up dead animals or blurry nightclub group photos and you’ll know I’m right.

In web marketing, if your site is unattractive or difficult to navigate, you’re asking a high bounce rate. Put your best face forward, whether it’s a selfie or an attractive, functional design.

Good Content

Once I found a perfect selfie, I laboured over writing my profile. It had to express what was good about me in a concise way that didn’t sound like a sales pitch—and so does your web copy. It needs to tell your audience what they want to know, without hitting them over the head with keyword-stuffing or trendy buzzwords.

Social Media

Tinder recently started allowing users to link their Instagram accounts to their profiles, and when I did so I saw my matches increase right away. And I have stayed in touch with more of the interesting people I’ve met—the same way your company will benefit from staying in touch with customers through social media channels. Make your profiles easy-to-find with social icons either at the top or bottom of your site.

Use Effective Calls to Action

The goal of SEO marketing is to generate conversions—the goal with Tinder is getting a date or phone number. You can’t just present people with a little blurb, and hope they’ll convert. Whenever I used direct, active language (“Let’s get lunch this Saturday!”) as opposed to passive language (“Do you want to hang out some time?”), the odds of actually meeting a real human face-to-face increased. People respond to active calls to action, so be sure to make effective use of them in your web marketing.

Don’t Harass People

This should be common sense, but sadly, it’s not. I’ve heard almost as many annoyed rants about retargeted ads as I have about guys on Tinder who just took things too far. Always be respectful of the people you deal with—especially in SEO marketing.