Matrimonial sites in India – Why choosing one is difficult?
According to the book, Marrying in South Asia: Shifting Concepts, Changing Practices in a Globalising World, there are over 1500 matrimony sites in India. According to this 2013 report from Business Standard, there are over 2600 matrimonial sites in India with over 700 of them are extensions of community bodies that have played a major role in arranged marriages among specific communities.
If you are someone looking to go through an arranged marriage, you have a problem of plenty when it comes to choosing from the thousands of online matrimonial sites in India. It is quite challenging for anyone to come to any sort of conclusion on which are the best matrimonial sites in India. Here are four reasons.
1. Low entry barrier for launching matrimonial sites
The reason for a large number of matrimonial sites is the fact that the entry barrier for launching a matrimonial site is very low. Create a simple registration form, provide a profile development feature and throw in a search feature based on simple matching factors. That’s it.
Everybody and their mother thinks they can attract a large number of customers by just launching a site. Traditional marriage brokers have also jumped into the business of launching matrimony sites as they also have a large number of matrimony profiles in their database.
2. Community-based matrimonial sites in India
The early entrants in the online matrimony market have branched out to offer community-based matrimonial sites in India. For example, tamilmatrimony.com and telegumatrimony.com and several hundreds of community portals belong to matrimony.com, the owner of Bharat Matrimony.
The dilemma for the user then becomes should they choose to signup with community-based or religion-based matrimonial sites in India or register with more broad-based portals?
3. Matrimonial sites in India are mostly clones
Barring a handful of sites, most matrimonial sites in India look alike and the feature/functionality list is also the same. The only difference you will see if the size and the quality of the profile database. However, you will never know the size or the quality fo the profile database before you register with the website. Without independent verification, there is no way for us to trust the profile numbers that matrimony sites in India project to attract new customers.
4. Dubious claims about the size of the profile database
Often, matrimonial sites in India claim to have a large pool of profiles. However, not all of them disclose the fact that the number of active profiles is only a small percentage of the total profiles. Also, the classification of what an active profile is subject to debate and discussion.
Let’s say, a site claims they have 2 million active profiles, but the definition of an active profile is any activity on the site within the last 6 months. We will never know how many of the 2 million profiles logged off 5 months ago, never to return?
How did we shortlist the best matrimonial sites in India?
While there are thousands of matrimonial sites in India, the market is dominated by three large players – Bharat Matrimony, Shaadi, Jeevansathi.
In such a scenario, listing a site beyond the top three matrimony sites is challenging as limited information is available and user feedback data is also scarce. Hence we devised what we call as the Jodi Logik Popularity Score to provide a basis for determining the top matrimonial sites in India.
The popularity score for matrimonial sites is based on four factors as published by Alexa. Alexa tracks site traffic and user behaviour on websites around the world and makes this data available for everyone to see.
1. Average daily time spent on site: This is a simple factor that tells us how engaged the user is once they sign up with the matrimonial site. Every minute corresponds to 1 point.
2. Daily pageviews by visitors: The number of pages viewed by the site visitor daily (on an average) is yet another indication of user engagement as well as the number of profiles available on the site that’s relevant to the user. Every 1-page view corresponds to 1 point.
3. Bounce rate: Bounce rate indicates the user’s interest in staying on the site once they find the site. A high bounce rate indicates lack of interest among users to stay on the site. We assigned 0 points for sites with 100% bounce rate and 10 points for sites with 0% bounce rate.
4. Alexa rank in India: Finally, we included the Alexa site traffic ranking in India. The lower the absolute value of the Alexa rank, the more points scored by the site. This is done on a scale that ranges between 1 to 60,000. For example, sites with an Alexa ranking that ranges from 1 to 1000 will get 60 points.
We then added up all the above to come up with a total matrimony site popularity score. The site with the highest total score is ranked number one.
Please note that the Jodi Logik Popularity Score assigns more weight to user engagement than absolute traffic to the site. That’s why you will notice you probably never heard of some of the top-ranked matrimonial sites on our list.
That’s not all.
We also decided to include sites that don’t have Alexa data as their site traffic is modest. The ranking for these sites is based on brand mentions.
So why did we include sites that don’t have a large traffic?
There are niche matchmaking sites that seem to provide a valuable service to a small community of users and have been running a credible business. Hence, we decided to look beyond the Jodi Logik Popularity Score to include sites that are not yet monitored by Alexa.
1. Bharat Matrimony
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 95+
Bharat Matrimony is a close competitor of Shaadi. They have millions of verified members in their database. Along with Shaadi, Bharat Matrimony is a pioneer in the online matrimony business and have branched out to offer online matrimony services through its network of 300 community-based portals. They also offer other services like personalised or assisted matrimony and matrimony services for elite (in other words, rich) users.
Their pricing information is as seen in the screen below. Their monthly pricing ranges from Rs.3825 (for 3 months) to Rs.17000 (3 months) and will vary depending on the package and the duration.
BharatMatrimony is ranked 1806 by Alexa in terms of popularity in India. However, we estimate their traffic to be higher as their regional portals attract sizeable traffic and have engaged user communities.
2. Chavara Matrimony
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 91.01
Chavara Matrimony is a matrimony site that caters to the Christians of Kerela. The site is run by Catholic priests and is an offshoot of the Chavara Family Welfare Centre in Cochin. Among the Christian community of India, the Church often plays a major role in arranged marriages. Chavara Matrimony is an example of this trend.
Pricing for premium subscription is very simple. You can start with a Rs. 5000 for 3 months or upgrade to Rs. 6300 for 6 months and Rs. 7650 for 12 months.
The Alexa rank for this site is 5121 in India.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 86.6
This is a site run by the Malayala Manorama Group in Kerela. They also claim to be the largest matrimony site in Kerala. Because they are backed by a publishing group, they provide additional services like print ads.
They have a big list of subscription options for various prices. The starter plan costs Rs. 4500 for 3 months. From here, you can add many add-on packages or pay a premium for assisted services (called the active plus membership).
The Alexa rank for this site is 4803 in India.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 84.96
Jeevansathi gets mentioned as one of the platforms of choice among matrimonial sites in India. They have a large database of verified profiles. Interestingly, when we interviewed Jeevansathi users in 2015, they rated Jeevansathi’s user interface as poor. However, Jeevansathi has plugged this gap and have arguably the least annoying user interface among the big three matrimonial sites in India.
They have also dramatically reduced their prices in their quest to catch up with the market leaders. In 2015, their plans were costing between Rs 650 to Rs.1110 per month. However, the per month price has come down by over 40% as seen in the 2018 pricing sheet below.
The Alexa ranking for Jeevansathi is 557.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 79.02
Shaadi is one of the oldest matrimony sites in India. According to their website, they have over 35 million users and 4 million people found their matches. Let’s just assume that they have a large user base and you have a fairly good chance fo bumping into someone that might be suitable for further conversation.
They don’t disclose pricing information until you register with them. Free registration will give you access to their database but is pretty much a hook to reel new customers in. If you need to communicate with prospective matches, you will need a paid subscription.
Here are the various membership plans offered by Shaadi. We found that the membership plans typically range from Rs.2200 for 3 months to almost Rs.6000 for a 12-month period. The number of messages you send to prospective matches is more if you subscribe to a higher price membership.
Shaadi.com is ranked 442 by Alexa in terms of popularity in India.
Find out how you can get more responses on Shaadi.com
6. Sai Sankara Matrimonials
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 77.99
This is a regional site based out of Chennai and caters to the local Brahmin community. We decided to profile this site even though the size of their database is limited (as they cater to a niche audience in a local market). The reason for including them is because of the fact that they have a strong presence in the local market and their founder is very active in galvanising the community for matchmaking purposes. SS Matrimony has now expanded to address the needs of other communities in Tamil Nadu as well.
There are no freebies here. You got to pay to create your profile. Here is their pricing table for 2018. One quirky pricing feature is that they charge Rs.100/- for changing your profile photo even after paying for membership.
The all India Alexa rank for this site is 10,393.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 71.8
Vivaah claims to be a leading free matrimonial site in India and we believe them! There seems to be enough provision to safeguard your photograph and contact details from other members. Unlike Bandhan.com, this site requires you to create a profile on Vivah.com and all profiles are registered members of Vivaah.com.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 65.71
This is a community-oriented matrimony site that caters to the Kamma Naidus or Naickers who live in Tamil Nadu and speak Telugu. Considering the limited number of customers they are catering to the site traffic statistics seems commensurate with the size of their target audience. Users can register free of cost and then upgrade to paid plans to access contact details, activate better privacy settings among other benefits.
Pricing ranges from Rs,3699 for 3 months to Rs. 7299 for 9 months.
Alexa ranking for this site is 30,118 in India.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 62.68
The Eenadu group is a major media group in Andra Pradesh. Like Times of India, they have a matrimonial site as well as use their newspapers and digital properties to broadcast matrimonial profiles created on their site. Eendupellipandiri.net caters to the Telugu speaking communities.
Membership prices range from Rs.2400 for 3 months to Rs.6100 for 9 months. More expensive membership options with more features are also available.
The India Alexa rank for this site is 28,237.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 62.36
Mangalashtak is a matrimonial site specially catering to the Marathi speaking population. The site is simple to use. You share all your information before you register and once you are a member, you can see other profiles for free. However, if you would like to view the contact information, you will have to sign for any of their three simple plans.
You will end up paying Rs.2000 for 3 months or subscribe to the Rs.3000 plan valid for an entire year.
Alexa ranks this site at 18477 among all sites in India
11. Second Shaadi
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 61.34
Second Shaadi is not affiliated with Shaadi.com. In fact, Shaadi.com tried to take down Secondshaadi.com claiming that the domain name was infringing on their brand. However, Shaadi.com lost the case!
It provides a platform for people who want to get remarried after a divorce or loss of the spouse. The site is still stuck in the past in terms of the user interface but seems to cater to the needs of its target audience well.
Pricing is relatively expensive with the started packages but it gets relatively cheaper as you move up to other membership plans. Pricing ranges from Rs. 2499 per 2-months to Rs. 6999 for unlimited validity period.
The Alexa rank for this site is 13,132 in India.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 61.31
Simplymarry is a matrimony site that belongs to the Times Group (Times of India Newspaper). They claim to have millions of profiles (we are not sure about this claim as the Alexa traffic ranking doesn’t add up to the claim) in their database and in this regard, there is not much of a difference between them and other popular matrimonial sites in India. They also offer community and religion-based search feature.
When you sign up to use any of their membership options, you have the opportunity to post a classified matrimonial ad in one of their newspaper editions. That’s a definite advantage compared to what you will get in other matrimonial sites.
The price for premium membership ranges from Rs. 3000 for 3 months to Rs. 9000 for 12 months.
According to Alexa, SimplyMarry is ranked 13358 among all Indian websites.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 60.76
In a crowded online matrimonial business, LoveVivah.com is trying it’s best to stand out. They claim to be India’s first site that requires new members to validate their profile using Adhaar! In addition, members have to validate their email, phone number and social media profile to access the profile database.
Customers Beware: Recently we discovered that Lovevivah copied entire blog posts from Jodi Logik and passed it off as their own content through their blog. Even after reporting this blatant theft to them, they failed to act. We are not sure if they will scam customers as well. Sign up at your own risk.
Pricing for the premium membership plans is as below. It starts with Rs.3300 for 3 months and goes all the way to Rs. 8400 for a year. They also have more expensive membership plans for personalised matchmaking experience.
The Alexa ranking (India) for this site is 10,713.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 59.83
Ever heard of Trivago? They aggregate travel booking rates from different portals and give you all the options in one single site. Bandhan is the Trivago of matrimonial sites in India. They aggregate profiles from Bharat Matrimony, Shaadi, Jeevansathi, and Simply Marry.
There is no subscription fee involved and you can access millions of profiles for free. However, if the profile owner has restricted the availability of their information without registration, you may have to sign up with the site hosting the profile.
If you sign up with Bandhan, you can view the photos of the profiles in the search result itself without having to click through to the site hosting the profile.
The all India Alexa rank for this site is 10,654.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 48.81
This is one of the popular free matrimonial sites in India. The site has features that allow you to keep your photograph and contact number private and disclose them only to members you choose. With free matrimony sites, the burden of screening the candidates for possible fraud or misrepresentation is on the members.
The Alexa rank in India is 33915.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 48.75
This site looks like a clone of every other matrimonial site in India! You can enrol for free and upgrade to premium membership plans. Compared to the top three matrimonial sites, we expect the profile database to be limited. Our assumption is based on the overall Alexa site rankings.
Pricing starts at Rs. 1999 for 1 month (which is steep) and goes up to Rs.7999 for 9 months.
The Alexa ranking for this site is 25,042 among websites in India.
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 48.15
This site claims to have millions of profile, but we are pretty sure this claim is an exaggeration. This site allows you to view profiles from their database without having to even register for the free membership plan. Photographs are also not protected and can be easily downloaded.
If you are adventurous and would like to use their premium membership plan, prices start at Rs. 950 for 3 months and Rs.2250 for a 1-year membership.
Alexa ranking for this site is 29,682 in India.
18. KM Matrimony
Jodi Logik Popularity Score: 31.12
KM Matrimony started off as a TV program to match couples. It later morphed into a marriage bureau that then branched into online matrimony business. The founder of this site is also a wedding caterer! The site caters (no pun intended) mostly customers in Tamil Nadu and has been gaining ground in the market in the last several years.
Pricing for online matrimony services ranges from Rs.3600 for 3 months to Rs.7200 for 6 months. Personalised matchmaking services are expensive and the most expensive one will cost you over a lakh of Rupees!
Alexa ranking in India for Kmmatrimony.com is 57065
iBluebottle is one of the new-age matrimony sites (they call themselves a matchmaking site) in India that aims to address the deficiencies of established matrimony sites. They screen every profile extensively and do random background checks as well. Every Friday, they send matches to their members. If you want to go beyond caste and community preferences and want to meet people who have a compatible personality, this might be a platform worth considering.
Their membership plans are very simple. You start off with a free membership. However, if you would like to communicate further, you need to upgrade either to the 3-months plan for Rs. 5000 or the 6-months plan for Rs. 7000.
This site is not yet ranked by Alexa.
20. Positive Saathi
This is a matrimony site exclusively for HIV+ Indians. HIV and AIDS carry a huge social stigma in India and even babies born with HIV are abandoned in this country. This site provides HIV+ Indians with the chance to lead a normal life. The problem with this site is that many of the links on the site are not functioning or under construction. This creates a credibility issue for new users.
There is no Alexa ranking for this site and there is no membership fee.
This is a site that provides people who are against paying and receiving dowry to seek matches from like-minded people. Considering the fact that this site is based out of Hyderabad, we suspect the membership is skewed towards Telugu speaking community. registration is free. However, if you would like to contact other members, it will cost you Rs. 500.
There is no Alexa ranking for this site and but we decided to include the site as it performing an important role in eradicating dowry.
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