Case Studies \ An online dating website
Our client wished to launch an online dating service targeted at the Asian community spread across the globe. The solution was required to provide registered members with the means to create profiles, search for partners and interact with them online. Based on these requirements Icreon designed and developed the website - a subscription based dating service. The solution included back-end interfaces to allow the solution administrator to operate and monitor the dating service.
Our client wanted to provide the expatriate Asian community with the chance to find partners online. The dating service was to be subscription based, with administrators having control over the rates and the validity period. People could register with the website and create exhaustive personal profiles. All profiles were required to be approved by the administrator before being posted on the website. Exhaustive search criteria were to be provided allowing members to easily locate partners that match their preferences. Members were to be provided with the means to communicate with each other via means of a text chat a well as an internal messaging system. Back-end interfaces were required allowing the administrators to manage the functioning of the website.
A web based solution to manage an online dating service
- Provides a means for people to find partners online
- Exhaustive personal profiles can be created
- Multiple means of communication - chat, email. People can choose who they wish to communicate with
- Administrator has control over the website including removing unacceptable profiles, manage subscription plans etc.
The solution can be accessed by various types of users:
- Administrator: Has complete control over the functioning of the website. Also has complete access to the back-end administration console.
- Members: Any user who has registered with the website.
The solution, developed by Icreon on the .net framework, aims to provide the client with the means to operate an online dating service. The solution has been divided into two main modules. These include:
The public website can be accessed by all visitors. Users can register with the website to create their profiles, browse through profiles of other users and interact with them online. The various features available within the public module include:
Registration People can register, free of charge, by providing basic information such as age, gender, partner gender preference and location. Once registered users will be prompted to complete their profiles and also subscribe to a plan in order to communicate with other members.
My Profile Members can create exhaustive personal profiles detailing interests, appearance, education and employment, lifestyle etc. Users with incomplete profiles are prompted to complete them. All profiles are displayed on the website only after being approved by the administrator. The various sections available in a profile include:
- Profile Homepage: The system will track all profile related activities (friend requests sent/received, flowers sent/received, profile visitors, messages sent/received etc) and send notifications to profile owners. Options to configure the notifications that they wish to receive, block communication from specific members, change their status from online to offline and vice-versa., opt-in/opt-out of premium membership etc are available to profile owners. Profile owners also have the option to view and process contact requests, photo requests etc.
- Appearance: The member can provide information describing herself/himself. This includes a brief description, options to specify the height, build, hair colour, colour of the eyes (a pre-defined list will be provided for these options) etc.
- Lifestyle & Interests: Interests and lifestyle options can be selected from among the options provided.
- My Perfect Match: The user can specify his/her criteria for a perfect match.
- My E-mails: Each member has access to an internal messaging system wherein the users can send and receive messages from other members. Options to create and manage an address book are also provided.
- Ab0ut Me: Will display the information that the user has entered about himself/herself. The information that can be entered will include the following: a brief description, religion, education and employment options.
- My Account: Contains information that can be used to track a user's account status such as subscription plan selected, amount paid, date of registration, expiry date. Unpaid members will be provided with options to subscribe with the website and become a paid member.
Subscription renewal reminders will be sent one week prior to expiry of the subscription plan. An auto-renew feature is available. This can be turned on/off at will.
An option to cancel registration has also been provided. A cancellation request is sent to the administrator for approval. Upon approval the user's membership will be cancelled. His/her profile will be removed from the system.
- My Photos: Will display the photos that have been uploaded by the user. A user can upload a maximum of 5 photos (including the profile photo). Each photo (other than the profile photo) can be flagged as private (available only to selected visitors) and public (available to all).
Visitors can request the profile owner to share their private photos. The profile owner can view and process such requests.
All photos will be available on the website only after it has been approved by the administrator.
Search Both quick and advanced search options have been provided. A quick search allows users to search for profiles on the basis of gender, age and country.
The advanced search options can be used to locate profiles that match a variety of criteria such as appearance (height, build, eye colour, ethnicity), education, nationality, religion hobbies, habits etc.
To ease the process of locating partners, a member can save his/her criteria for an ideal match. These criteria can then be used to locate partners that match the criteria specified.
A member can communicate with another member via means of e-mail (an internal messaging system has been used), or text-chat (this feature is available only if both the members are online). However these features are only available to premium members, users will be promoted to subscribe in case they are not premium members. Members can also initiate interaction by sending virtual flowers to others.
Comments Visitors can post comments on other member profiles and photos. Options to delete the comment will be provided to the profile owner.
Report Abuse Options for users to report another member for misuse to the administrator have been provided. The comments and the details of the user against whom the report is being filed will be made available to the administrator.
To enable the website administrators to manage and monitor the website, a browser based administration module has been provided. The module will be password protected and can only be accessed by authorized users. The tasks that an administrator can perform will be divided into separate modules, with each module representing a specific area of the website. The various sections available within the admin module include:
Dashboard The dashboard displays a summarized view of all website activities that took place in the current date. The administrator can view the details of all new subscribers, membership cancellation requests, and pending photo and profile requests.
Subscriptions The administrator can create subscription plans that are to be offered to subscribers. He/she can also view a list of subscribers and can also check the subscription status i.e. whether the subscription has expired, is current etc. They can also view all cancelation requests and can choose to accept them.
Registered Users The administrator can view a list of registered users. They can block/activate or delete member accounts. The administrator can also process (approve/reject) all profile and photo requests (any additions, updation to the profile about me section or the photos require administrator approval). Only approved photos and profiles will be available to others.
Banners The administrator can control the advertisements appearing on the various pages of the public module. Multiple types of banners (flash, image or text) can be uploaded. The administrator can also select the page and zone within the page where the banner is to be displayed.
Transaction Details The administrator can track all status of the payment gateway transaction for all subscribers.
Technologies used in developing this application are: