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Such companies offer a wide variety of unmoderated matchmaking services, most of which are profile-based.

At the end of November 2004, there were 844 lifestyle and dating sites, a 38% increase since the start of the year, according to Hitwise Inc.

The stigma associated with online dating dropped over the years and people view online dating more positively.

Further, the 2016 Pew Research Center's survey reveals that the usage of online dating sites by American adults increased from 9% in 2013, to 12% in 2015.

Further, during this period, the usage among 18- to 24-year-olds tripled, while that among 55- to 65-year-olds doubled.

Over 50% of research participants in a 2011 study did not view online dating as a dangerous activity, whereas 43% thought that online dating involved risk.

Because online dating takes place in virtual space, it is possible for profile information to be misrepresented or falsified.

Other sites target highly specific demographics based on features like shared interests, location, religion, or relationship type.

Online dating services also differ widely in their revenue streams.

A great diversity of online dating services currently exists.

Some have a broad membership base of diverse users looking for many different types of relationships.

Still others rely solely on paid membership subscriptions.

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