Amidst the countless online dating websites that have cropped up over the years, one site above all others has remained true to its original purpose. That site is lavalife.com and it started in a very different setting from that of any other online dating website. Whereas these other websites were created during the dawn of the internet age, Lavalife has been in existence since way before that. Lavalife started as a broadcast service that provided automated telephone answering to callers. It then evolved into a dating service over the phone that was then referred to as Telepersonals.
When the internet came around, Lavalife’s creators took advantage of this new platform by subsequently creating their own online dating website. As time passed, the owners bought an already existing online dating site that was known as Webpersonals. It took years for the owners to get rid of the site’s original name of Webpersonals until it became lavalife.com in 2001. Since then, lavalife.com’s membership roster has had a steady rise. It now has approximately 2 million members that are located in various parts of the globe. However, the bulk of the site’s income of close to US$100 million comes from its Canadian members. As a matter of fact, lavalife.com has bagged the Top Pick award in the online dating category from its Canadian market four years in a row from 2008 to 2012.
In 2004, Lavalife experienced a change in ownership when it was sold by its four creators to an American direct marketing firm called Vertrue.
Lavalife.com has a lot of features in common with other equally successful online dating sites. However, one thing that sets it apart is the fact that the site’s members have 3 different dating communities to choose from:
The dynamics of each of these communities can already be interpreted by looking at each of the community names. Forums and other functionalities such as polls and manual searching are all unique in each of these communities. Also, lavalife.com members do not even have to worry about getting confined to a single community with no chance to interact with members from the other 2 communities. This is because members are given the ability to create profiles for each community that the wish to be part of, even all three if they so prefer.
Aside from this unique feature, lavalife.com has other features that it can definitely boast of since these are provided to non-members for free:
There aren’t too many online dating sites that offer these services without any monthly charge.
Because searching for members is provided by the site without any charges, it also comes as no surprise that searchers get to see the latest updates or changes in members’ profiles. Just like in social networking websites, the details on when and what kind of information was changed would be indicated on the member’s profile. This usefulness of this feature is appreciated by searchers who wish to know which members have been inactive and for how long now, as well as the latest additions to the community.
Other advantages that a lot of lavalife.com members have cited include the following:
The site offers an automatic renewal option that allows members to save an additional $5 for renewed memberships. However, this option isn’t obligatory and members can simply disregard this during the payment processing.
Online users might automatically assume that the low monthly rates that are charged for using lavalife.com imply that a lot of disadvantages can be expected. On the contrary, lavalife.com visitors get to enjoy most of its features for free without fear of having to pay any hidden charge. There are only 3 disadvantages that have been cited with regard to lavalife.com membership, though:
Members do not have the ability to view which fellow members have added them to the favorites list.
The amount of advertisements can be a bit of a nuisance for members.
In terms of the site having way too many advertisements, members do understand that these ads often fund the freebies that members get to enjoy.
The real question is “Why wouldn’t they?” Lavalife.com offers features that can never be found in any other online dating website, no matter how big or successful that site is. Considering that these unique features are offered at low monthly costs, it should then follow that single people would definitely prefer using lavalife.com as their primary source of online dates.
Despite the 3 divided communities, lavalife.com still manages to give its members a sense of wholeness by giving them the power to choose which dating community to join. This site is also not as exclusive as others seem to think it is. In fact, in lavalife.com, there are many LGBT subscribers who mingle with the “straights” in each community. A person’s relationship status also does not have to hinder him from joining the site since even people who are in stable relationships can search the site for activity partners and online friends. However, lavalife.com serves its single members much better by pairing them with other members who could possibly become their partners for life regardless if they are divorced, separated, or widowed.