Last updated on February 12, 2014 | by Aet Suvari0
Plenty Of Fish Review
Plenty Of Fish Review
Summary: A free dating site (with a paid upgrade option) that does the basics okay but isn't great for serious daters.
That’s what we decided to find out – does Plenty Of Fish work? When we’re talking about a subscription based dating site we usually concentrate more on how it works and less to whether it works at all. The best of the paid dating sites have invested time and money to create a safe and secure environment where you can search for your soulmate or drink date – whatever you tend to prefer.
But when it comes to free dating sites, things aren’t always as cut and dried – since you’re not a paying customer, you can’t always expect the same standards. There’s also the issue of free dating site members who signed up because it’s, well, free. Without any financial investment they might not be as serious about looking for a relationship as a member of a paid site.
So, how does Plenty of Fish measure up against the big paid for dating sites? First, the sign-up process is pretty much the same as any other site. You get your standard set of questions where you get to tick the boxes, pick the right options from the drop-down menus. It’s all pretty straightforward and you’d hardly be surprised with anything asked from you. The only thing that’s perhaps a little bit out of the ordinary is the question about birth order – and apparently they need to know that so that they could find better matches for you. Quite an interesting approach, although not sure how telling a fact it is when it comes to dating.
Of course, there are parts you need to fill in yourself, like any other site. Plenty of Fish takes it quite seriously to keep any kind of offensive or obscene content out of their site. There’s no revealing photos allowed and you’re also advised not to be overly explicit in your self-description. We can appreciate that – after all, being a free site anyone can join, but they need to take care of all of their members, including those who don’t appreciate sexually explicit content. After all, there are specific sites for that and this is not one of them. So, if all you are looking for is some no-strings attached quick fun, this is probably not the right place for you.
Creating the profile
Another thing that you can write up for your profile page besides the self-description, is the description of an ideal first date. It’s optional, of course, but it’s a nice little extra touch that makes it perhaps a little easier to relate to other members on this page.
You can upload up to 8 photos on Plenty of Fish – 16 if you upgrade to a full membership, but more about this later – and like we always say: please take time to choose your photos and give some thought to it how you want to present yourself online. It’s so easy to just take a selfie with your smartphone but that says so little about you, about who you are and what you like. Unfortunately we saw a lot of bad profile pics on Plenty of Fish, which tends to be the case on a lot of non-paying sites. If people don’t need to invest money, they also don’t tend to invest time and don’t work as hard as they perhaps could.
An interesting feature that Plenty of Fish has, is their own personality and chemistry test. Apparently they have teamed up with scientists in order to put their testing system together and even advertise that 17% of the time they can pick an exact person you will end up dating, matching you based on your test results. 17 per cent is not very high, admittedly, but if you believe in that sort of a thing, the tests are long and comprehensive and come with very detailed reports where they also point out your character traits and give you some ‘food for thought’.
They promise to take your chemistry test into account when matching you with members on the site, according to your emotional needs. There’s also a test for relationship needs, which is intended to show you what you are like in a relationship and how you could make your next relationship work better. The search also gives you matches in the order of compatibility according to your test results.
Searching and browsing
Speaking of search, it seems extensive enough and comes back with a lot of results. However, it’s rather poorly presented, the design definitely isn’t the strongest part of POF The good side of the search is the breadth of search options that you can set – it’s got a lot of different criteria that you can choose when searching, but the results that come back aren’t presented well and you won’t get the best overview. You just end up with a long list of names and small photos and in order to find out anything else, you need to visit the profile – which, by the way, leaves a mark of you having been to their profile.
There’s also the Meet Me feature, which is essentially something familiar from quite a few dating sites. You get shown a picture of a match and you can then choose between three options of Yes, No and Maybe if you’d be interested in dating him or her. If you both agree on it, your profiles get sent to each other. We’ve seen this feature on some dating sites but we really don’t see a lot of potential in it, especially if you’re really not the type to make your decisions about someone based on just one look at one photo.
Getting in touch
If you’re interested in someone on Plenty of Fish, you have two options of contacting them – either Flirt (which is essentially the same as a Wink or Icebreaker) or plain old messaging. The only interesting thing about mails is that they seem to have a lot of filters that you can set, so that you could only be contacted by a very specific set of people. I suppose it’s necessary if you expect yourself to be very popular on the site and wan to safeguard from people outwith you age criteria etc.
Free vs paid site
Now, even POF is a free site, you can also upgrade to their full membership, which means you’re entitled to a few extras. Are those extras essential? Not really. Mainly it means you come up as first on the Meet Me list and also get access to the extended profiles of other members. That means you get to read their test result summaries. Upgraded members can see if their emails were read or deleted, check out who’s viewed their profile and at what time they visited. Plenty of Fish advertises that as a result the number of people viewing your profile triples and that you also get a massive increase in emails but to be fair we find that a little hard to believe. Perhaps the best thing you get out of upgrading is to be able to use the site ad-free.
Plenty Of Fish Review – Conclusion
As dating sites go, Plenty of Fish is definitely popular, we can’t argue with that. It’s one of the biggest free dating sites but in our opinion it’s not one of the best. It lacks character, it lacks anything that would make it special, that would make it stand out. It’s got most of the right things in right places but it all seems a little too bland to make it a truly great site. I suppose it does the job but the whole experience is not very enjoyable. If you’re not serious abut dating and just want to keep your options open, Plenty of Fish is a fine place. However, if you’re serious about dating and want to find a compatible match, you’re better elsewhere.
Pros and Cons
It is free and the search is very extensive.
The whole site feels bland and soulless, also, the design is quite poor.