eHarmony Review: Does It Work? (Complaint Department)
You should read the letter yourself on his blog for full-on comedic and yet absolutely true experience. Seriously funny stuff! Single Steve expresses--in no uncertain terms--many ex-member's frustration with the giant online dating site. His main points include issues with the active/inactive user base, and his experience with poor customer service. Steve wasn't alone in his complaints, and a simple internet search on eHarmony complaints will yield many similar complaints.
Somehow, we don't think that Single Steve's offensive statement is exactly what Neil Clark Warren, the popular Christian theologian, author and psychologist had in mind when he launched eHarmony in 2000.
In July 2012, 78 year-old Warren came out of retirement to revitalize eHarmony, which was struggling with a decreased 13.6% share of the market, likely a result of increased competition and presumably poor user retention and a lagging reputation. The site has now changed their marketing identity from "matchmaking" to "relationship site", adding life advice and relationship blogs. The Dating Gurus will be watching to see if member complaints about confusing cancellation policies, mismatches, and unclear activity levels are addressed.
What's the Beef?
An an applicant (notice we didn't say "member), you can't simply register for the service, upload photos and look for other members. Instead, you will fill out 400+ (!!) questions about yourself to create a personality profile, and then upload a photo.
"Phew", you're thinking, "Now I can get to the good part.. bring on my matches!"
Not so fast.
If you are expecting eHarmony to be like other dating sites, you may be disappointed. The site believes that their algorithms know way better than you do who will be compatible, and "match up subscribers based on people's core traits and values to replicate the traits of happy couples". You do not get to peruse profiles and pictures. Instead, you are promised that you will be sent other members profiles who are great matches for marriage minded people. This process takes a lot longer than other dating sites, and for that reason, people who are looking for a quick referral and matching options will not be happy.
The Complaint Department
Many members have complained that they didn't receive any matches for a long time, (ranging from a week to many weeks) and then when they eventually received matches, they had no way of knowing if a potential match was even an active member on the site, or simply an applicant who logged on to get a free personality profile report and then disappeared.
Sampling of frequent complaints include:
"If their matching system does not feel you are compatible with someone, they simply do not send you any matches, but they are happy to continue to charge you $50 a month, even though they are not providing a service".
"There is an element of attraction and physical compatibility that is missing from eHarmony's supposed matching service. ...80% of the matches that they sent to me don’t have photos. On some occasions, the accounts were already closed."
"I cancelled my subscription and still got charged another month. I could not get a refund. The customer service rep said its non refundable. The site is terrible. Difficult to navigate. Match.com is great. Don't waste your money on this site."
"You can't browse on your own...and the matches fall off after an initial slew. I don't have that much patience. Save your money".
"This service is twice as expensive as the other dating sites out there and the matches are often far away (despite my search radius) and often dead ends/non-responses."
"Because eHarmony was originally a Christian dating site, it's biased in that direction. Until they were sued, they didn't even allow gay members, and only then opened Compatible Partners to be compliant with anti-discrimination law".
Breaking the Bank
eHarmony is the most expensive online dating/matchmaking website, and because matches are often slow in coming, or are from dead-end subscribers, this can be a financially daunting commitment.
- Paying monthly: $59.95 per month
- Paying for three months at a time: $119.85 (which equals $39.95 per month)
- Paying for six months at a time: $179.70 (which equals $29.95 per month)
- Paying for one year at a time: $239.40 (which equals $19.95 per month)
Confusing Cancellation policies?
TIP: Make sure you read all the details about cancellation before you subscribe, making note of the differences between Closing Account, Cancelling Subscription and cancelling Automatic Renewal.
- eHarmony states that you may cancel your subscription purchase at any time prior to midnight of the third business day following the date of purchase to receive a full refund.
- If you're outside of the three days, or your subscription is an Automatic Renewal, you are not eligible for a refund.
- Clicking the 'Cancel My Subscription' link at the bottom of the page to begin the cancellation process (selecting "Cancel My Subscription" will only turn off the auto-renew feature--your current subscription will still run its full term).
- If you are in a payment plan, canceling your subscription after the third business day will not stop any remaining payments from being charged, but it will prevent your subscription from renewing when your current term is over. You may continue to use your subscriber benefits for the length of your subscription term but you will not receive a refund for any unused days.
Got all that? There's more, but our heads are spinning trying to take it all in. We think that a cancellation or refund policy should not be so complex, and it's obvious that many other readers feel the same way, resulting in feeling ripped-off or scammed.
Heard enough criticisms of eHarmony? Check out the favorable reviews and success story written by an eHarmony fan.
THE DATING GURU'S GRADE: C (But we're watching, and hopeful)
Or try it yourself by clicking: Love is out there. We can help you find it. Join eHarmony today!