Originally started as BlackSinglesConnection, BlackSingles is an online dating service that was founded with one goal in mind: to provide dating opportunities and an intimate online atmosphere for black singles. Despite the fact that it targets only a specific group in the U.S., the site gathered a good community thanks to its dependable dating service. The site lets you register and browse other profiles completely free, but you can only unlock the site’s full potential by subscribing. Other than the standard searching, users can select appealing profiles, and the system discreetly checks the likability on the other side. BlackSingles is devoted to continuously upkeep member’s attention with public questions, so people have an extra means to learn more about new people.
As the title would suggest, BlackSingles is a place where African-American men and women can build relationships and look for love. It should be mentioned that during the registration, the system offers other ethnicity options too. This most likely comes from the fact that BlackSingles is part of the Spark Network of dating websites, and they are using their unified registration model. The site itself can be considered very simplistic, with only the key features displayed prominently. The top section shows your most important menus, like the inbox where your love letters await you, your current matches from people you want to check out, your profile to self-reflect, and a community where you can socialize.
Interestingly enough, BlackSingles starts the registration with your personal data, and only asks for your desired username and email in the final steps. As for the setup process, it could be considered standard: you need to provide info about your appearance, habits, education, religion, your location etc. After that, the system sends a confirmation email to finish the registration. Luckily, the whole act doesn’t take more than a couple of seconds, as most input can be found in a list. After finishing the registration, you’re being asked to start your online dating quest by uploading a photo, and expanding your profile with additional info. Remember: a well-developed and interesting profile attracts far more attention than a shy, reserved one.
There are several ways people can find attractive matches at BlackSingles. There is the old fashioned way: you can set some basic parameters, like location, age, physical attributes or religion, and let the algorithm shepherd up the possible targets. The main page is also a useful way to look for new people, but the showcased roster isn’t refreshed often. The most promising possibility is the “secret admiring” . With this feature you can mark likable dates, and the system discretely brings you up among their search result. If the interest is mutual, then BlackSingles informs you both, and the romance can commence.
At BlackSingles users are presented with several forms of communication. You can email each other to initiate a talk, and bring it to the next level with the live chat. Bear in mind that starting a conversation is only possible after you upgraded your free account to a premium version. However, you can still accept and read emails from others if they contacted you first. The site also has a fun and intuitive way to connect people: the Question and Answer section is located at the bottom of the main page, and it always shows a question, like “Who is the strongest person in the world?” or “Where did you travel on your first road trip?”. Naturally, other singles can see your answers, and if you gave truly witty answers, you can surely win over some hearts.
BlackSingles hasn’t developed a mobile app for any platform yet, though we presume there will be a BlackSingles app in the near future based on the one for the main Spark site itself. The lack of attention towards mobile-users applies to the website too; it hasn’t been optimized for touchscreens. This means that accessing the site on a smartphone is highly inconvenient and frustrating, as the size of the page doesn’t adjust to the smaller screens, and it has to be constantly swept side to side. Sadly, the total lack of mobile features is a great disadvantage, as nowadays people prefer using smartphones for date-searching on the go to sitting in front of a computer, waiting for a message.
Following popular trends, BlackSingles offers the experience of browsing for free, but they ask you money to actually get in touch with someone. “Free to Browse” – their own statement describes the situation with utmost accuracy, as a free account doesn’t allow you to send a message to your preferred single. In case you are persistent, and willing to become a paying member, BlackSingles offers three variables. You can choose the pay-as-you-go option, only paying for one month at a time. This is the most expensive, costing you $14.99 every time. Opting for three months in advance provides you a discount, as the price is reduced to $8.99 per month. The most cost effective solution is the semi-annual plan, since it’s only $6.99 for a month. The payments can be done using a credit card only, as the site doesn’t accept checks, PayPal or any other payment method.
To prevent people from harassing and misleading the community, BlackSingles constituted a very strict method in which the admins are constantly supervising new profiles, uploaded pictures and the essays people write about themselves. This way improper behavior easily leads to a banned account. The customer service can be connected in this case by calling them over the phone. For other kinds of troubles, valid members can access the FAQ help section, or fill out an online form and send it to the admins. The site also presents users tips and articles about dating, whereupon they can up their game.
BlackSingles is a decent, but not outstanding online dating service. It understands its own premise – an independent place where black singles can bond and bloom their relationship – and provides a sufficient enough website for it. People have an easy way to search for dates, and the public Q&A helps people proclaim their opinion. Sadly, BlackSingles lacks some definitive extra features, like extra bits of personal traits to showcase on the profile, an app, or a mobile version of its website optimized for smartphones. The registration is free, and the browsing isn’t limited, which is helpful for new users. The communication is available for members only, but the monthly fees are budget-friendly compared to other dating sites.
- Secret admire feature
- Unlimited browsing
- Q&A section
- Not optimized for mobiles
- Lack of features
- Lackluster design