OkCupid Plans Further Asian and Middle Eastern Expansion

OkCupid is planning an expansion into the Middle East and Asia. It is part of Match Group’s wider push into international markets by offering tailored dating experiences based on each country’s cultural norms and preferences. 

OkCupid has been building out a detailed roster of questions for users to fill out on the moral, ethical, political and social issues that speak to individual cultures. Users don’t need to answer every question for their profiles, but have hundreds to choose from if they wish.

The new strategy has paid off in other markets, such as India, a testing ground for OkCupid’s more country-specific approach.

Since localising the dating experience last year, OkCupid’s downloads in India increased by 1.4 million outpacing other local competitors.

Those efforts in India included both the launch of new country-specific questions on the app – like asking users whether women should work after marriage, how they felt about paneer on pizza, and how many days a wedding should span – along with a brand campaign aimed at celebrating young Indians’ autonomy in choosing their own partner. 

Recently, OkCupid has set its sights on Israel and Turkey, and will soon be publicly announcing its plans to take a similar strategic route in Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia and the UK.

CEO Ariel Charytan told Yahoo Finance: “What was so interesting to us in an Israel or a Turkey or other parts of Asia is that people were looking to use OkCupid in spite of the fact that it was fundamentally at that time architected for an American audience.

“So if you can imagine someone in Turkey, you ask someone in Turkey, you know, did you vote for Trump or Clinton? Obviously they didn’t vote for either of them. 

“But the point was they were signifying a desire to find vectors of compatibility that would apply to them in their culture, which made us rapidly say, ‘Okay, what if we changed all the questions and all the onboarding, all the compatibility parameters and things that are inherently Turkish?’

Visit the OkCupid website here.