Dutch and Benelux online dating market (iDate Cologne – September 2013)


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Keynote presentation for the iDate internet dating conference in Cologne. An overview of the most important players in developments in the online dating industry in The Netherlands and Belgium.

- Introduction to BeNeLux & The Netherlands
- Size of the online dating market
- Overview of players
- Largest dating sites: Lexa and Relatieplanet
- Case: Twoo – the fastest growing
- Case: Paiq – the most intelligent
- Case: The Inner Circle – the most trending
- Mobile trends
- Outlook: dating in 2015
- Recommendations for Dutch market

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  • I’m not the typical online dating consultant. If there is one. I run another business, and therefore will leave end of day. So write down my details if you want to catch up.
  • As you can see, I am in a continuous need for a haircut, and my wardrobe consists of one single shirt only.
  • There's a huge market for web presence in The Netherlands [size of market numbers]
  • Small region with relatively many people living in this area, making it an attractive area.
  • This is Netherlands, almosteveryone online.Belgium: In the Northern part, wherepeoplespeak Dutch, internet adoption as high as in NL.Luxemburg is a quite insignificant market mainlyaddressedbyGermanplayers.Duringthispresentation I willmainly focus on The Netherlandsand the Flemmish (Dutch language) part of Belgium.
  • Spain, France and Danmark report softdrugs use of 32-33%.In The Netherlands 184 cm for man and woman 172 cm.
  • I’m not going to talk about windmills and our soft drugs laws, but rather like to emphasis the high penetration of social networks here.What is the country with the highest Facebook penetration? Right, it’s not The Netherlands. It is Indonesia. The Netherlands has 70%.
  • 1994: free internet digital internetBefore 1998, therewereonly Bulletin Board systems.
  • There's a huge market for web presence in The Netherlands [size of market numbers]
  • Rev/cap in other countries , CH UK €3.50 SE €2.80 FR€1.90
  • International andinternationalplayers.6.Much more adult datingsites then in othercountries. Thatcouldbeduetolegislation. a lot with fake profiles which is actually allowed if you mention it. No background checks. quitereliableone is Dutch Cougar, thatgets high ratings. It has the tagline “Put ladies in control”
  • Big players, remarkable playersType, proposition, price, public
  • This is not a complete overview, but it does contain the most important players. A lot of free datingsites too.
  • Yearly I write an article called Does Size MatterFor 2-3 years in a row Lexa and Relatieplanet were a draw. That changed since this year
  • July is a busy month. So expect these numbers to be up to 25% lower in another month.These are unique visitors per month.Paiq is kleinerdanKnuz en groterdanParship.BadoolijktgroterdanLexa.Type, proposition, price, public
  • Top of mind brand awareness in 2011 : 27%
  • Top of mind brand awareness in 2011 : 27%
  • Top of mind brand awareness in 2011 : 27%
  • EBITDA H1 2013: 1 751 000 EURO  per jaar 3502000 dus 3.5 miljoen. Multiplier van 5x betaald.
  • I have to make an excuse here: they are working on a new homepage (overdue)
  • It’s less superficial.
  • Perfect freemium: using all features, but soon feel the urge to do small upsell. Payment is very easy by phone.
  • En ook nog andere dingen – even checken
  • Less emphasis on relationships. It doesn’t mean all new sites are casual sites. It means that in communication, brands shift emphasis less they are a dating site.
  • There's a huge market for web presence in The Netherlands [size of market numbers]
  • funkyFish has 26000 profiles of Christian youth
  • There's a huge market for web presence in The Netherlands [size of market numbers]
  • It’s no longer based on partner preference, or in other words: what people think they like themselves. Because that type of matching has proven to be wrong time after time.
  • There's a huge market for web presence in The Netherlands [size of market numbers]
  • 1. In general segment, it will be extremely hard to win without a lot of marketing money. In niches there is more room. Standard 2. Good customer service3. I’ve never seen it work. And immediately your product is completely non-differentiation.4. Lean startup
  • Dutch and Benelux online dating market (iDate Cologne – September 2013)

    1. 1. The Dutch and Benelux online dating market iDate Cologne – September 2013 Eric Klaassen Dating Insider www.datinginsider.nl
    2. 2. What is the size of the market? What are fast-growing " and remarkable players? What are the mobile trends? What happens to online dating in 2015? I want to enter the BeNeLux – where should I start? “
    3. 3. Introduction to Benelux & NL
    4. 4. The Benelux
    5. 5. The Benelux: online population The Netherlands (NL) 16.73 m inhabitants 15.53 m online (93%) Luxemburg 0.50 m inhabitants (LUX) 0.46 m online (92%) Belgium (BE) 10.44 m inhabitants 8.49 m online (81%)
    6. 6. Introducing the Dutch: fact or myth C.  Highest  Twi+er   penetra0on   B.  Tallest  people  on   earth   A.  Highest  cannabis   usage  in  Europe   NationaalKompas, Klub Lange Mensen
    7. 7. Top social media penetration #1 The Netherlands 26% #1 Indonesia 87% Emarketer (2013), ComScore (2011) #1 The Netherlands 27%
    8. 8. A brief history of online dating in NL First datingsite: D-Date Social media explosion, online dating taboo starts fading away World Bank Broadband adoption increase," new dating entrants like Relatieplanet Dutch players start expanding to other markets Internetpenetration Free internet providers
    9. 9. Size of online dating market
    10. 10. Almost 2.5 million online daters in NL •  Online population: 15.5 million •  About 15% uses dating sites, sometimes or regularly •  “Size of the prize”: 2.3 million occasional online daters •  “Active market”: 1.0-1.5 million regular online daters Maurice de Hond, CBS
    11. 11. Size of the Dutch online dating market is €30-35 million •  Sources at Relatieplanet in 2011: €20-25 million •  Has grown but now stabilising: €30-35 million •  Rev/cap: €2 NL •  Singles growing at steady rate:" in 2013: 2.8 million" in 2025: 3.3 million
    12. 12. Payment method preference of consumers For e-commerce: 1. iDEAL (48%) 2. Paying afterwards (24%) 3. Bank transfer (8%) 4. Creditcard (8%) 5. PayPal (5%) For dating, pay by phone is an alternative. Provider takes ±25% (call) or 50-70% (SMS). Blauw research (2012)
    13. 13. Breakdown of Dutch dating sites 6 - 7 " on TV 35 - 45 usable" for consumers 100 - 150 (semi-)" professionally managed 600 - 650 dating sites
    14. 14. Different types of dating sites and apps 1.  General" Lexa, Relatieplanet 2.  Quasi-scientific matchmaking" Parship, eDarling 3.  Special matchmaking" Paiq, OkCupid 4.  Niche" eMatching, FunkyFish 5.  Flirt SoLoMo" Badoo, Twoo 6.  Casual/adult" Secondlove, Victoria Milan
    15. 15. Online dating players
    16. 16. Significant dating players in BeNeLux Flirt Serious Free Freemium Subscription BE:  EliteDa0ng  
    17. 17. Most unique visitors in NL: Lexa (Meetic) 1.  Lexa.nl 455,000 (3.8%) 2.  Relatieplanet 261,000 (2.2%) 3.  Twoo 134,000 (1.1%) 4.  Zoosk 98,000 (0.8%) 5.  Pepper.nl 34,000 (0.3%) 6.  Secondlove.nl 32,000 (0.3%) lower in active users 7.  Knuz.nl 27,000 (0.2%) largest free datingsite 8.  EDarling 24,000 (0.2%) 9.  e-matching 13,000 (0.1%) niche: higher education 10. Parship 7,000 (0.1%) July 2013 – Category: Personals Top 10 (but different comScore category):
    18. 18. Lexa tries to upsell to paid subscription and matchmaking site Lexamore
    19. 19. Lexa is #1 in traffic & brand awareness •  Largest datingsite in The Netherlands •  Top spender on TV advertisements •  Brand recognition: #1 in NL 68% brand awareness
    20. 20. Relatieplanet (TMG) is one of the oldest sites in NL •  Acquired by TMG in 2005 for €21 million •  Original founder still active with Relatie.nl •  Claims 200,000 active members per month •  Only one large redesign in 2011 since the start in 2002
    21. 21. Before 2010 2011-now
    22. 22. Twoo
    23. 23. Twoo app downloaded 1+ million times Plus: 33% of all users and 44% of NL users access website through mobile (excluding app)"
    24. 24. Twoo offers credits and unlimited subscription
    25. 25. Twoo: one of the fastest growing datingsites in history •  Initially started in Belgium in April 2011 •  Within a year, 10 million unique visits per month •  Twoo was taken over by Meetic for €18.9 million •  70,000 paying members (March 2013) delivering €2.1 million euro of revenues for Q1. €30 per member, €10 per month. •  Meetic as a whole: marketing costs are 59% of revenues, but marketing of Twoo is cheaper. DatingInsider
    26. 26. One of the reasons for initial quick growth
    27. 27. Another reason for quick growth
    28. 28. Paiq: meet the most intelligent dating site
    29. 29. 8+ years of existence 1000s active users €0 spend on marketing
    30. 30. The magic inside •  Text chat to unblur photo of your partner •  No profiles, just a questionnaire •  Special features like BattleDate •  Better matching using artificial intelligence •  Photo ratings and actual on-site behaviour are used for matching
    31. 31. Why users like Paiq •  More focus on personality: chat to deblur photo first •  More anonymous: no profile search and blurred photos •  Intelligent matching system with simple scoring system (1.0-10.0) •  Matching takes into account physical attractiveness •  Large user base (so plenty of fish) •  Features like BattleDate and photo rating system are fun
    32. 32. Paiq: smart freemium with dynamic costs
    33. 33. Paiq also offers subscription
    34. 34. The Inner Circle
    35. 35. The Inner Circle offers very simple subscription
    36. 36. Remarkable player: The Inner Circle •  Invitation only (5 per member) •  All members checked before acceptance •  Started within group young, successful people •  Expansion strategy to start in new city with local expert when there is some traction. •  Active in Amsterdam (6000+ members), London (4000 members)
    37. 37. Mobile dating trends
    38. 38. 42% of Dutch households" owns a tablet
    39. 39. The Netherlands is a tablet country, still mainly iPad (32.4%) and Samsung (18.0%) IDC: market share Q2 2013
    40. 40. Twoo: 2011 Nov to 2013 May doubled Mobile an important driver of revenue for SoLoMo flirt dating sites. Mobile: essential revenue driver or dissatisfier when absent? Meetic Group (excl. Twoo): 2011 Q1Q2: 3.2% 2012 Q1Q2: 3.3% Mobile not a driver of revenue for general dating sites, but important part of core proposition. +2.9% +100%
    41. 41. Strategic choice: free app or paid app
    42. 42. Outlook: dating in 2015
    43. 43. Does online dating suffer from Facebook? Which of the following BEST describes how you met your current partner online? Through an online dating / relationship website 53.5% Through a social networking website (e.g. Facebook) 7.6% Through an online discussion board / forum / blog (not linked to online dating) 8.6% Through a chat room (not linked to online dating) 17.8% Other 12.6% Total (married or co-habitation and met partner online, n=837) 100.0% DatingInsider
    44. 44. Facebook’s Graph Search is not yet available in Benelux
    45. 45. Future: the ‘return’ of matchmaking •  Matching based on ‘what people say’ does not work •  Self-learning algorithms •  Based on: –  Structured data (actual behaviour) –  Unstructured data (e.g. social media likes)
    46. 46. Future: advanced SoLoMo •  Apple patent to identify other users that are nearby •  Highlight, SonarMe apps
    47. 47. Google Glass + FindMyFace + Plus 30 years old single lawyer likes Suits tv-series Linda
    48. 48. Recommen- dations
    49. 49. Five tips for entering Dutch and Benelux online dating market 1.  Bring a lot of money – or a truly inventive concept 2.  Provide trust & transparency 3.  Lean development: build–measure–learn 4.  Leverage mobile presence – including tablet 5.  Grow towards the critical mass
    50. 50. Contact for more information: Eric Klaassen eric@datinginsider.nl http://www.datinginsider.nl