The impact of lockdown on Covid-19 can be seen in almost all business sectors, but matrimonial sites were an exception, as they had witnessed a huge growth in the number of new customers. With most people being confined to their houses amid lockdown, they were spending more time browsing on online matrimonial websites in order to find the right match.
The pandemic had helped various matrimonial sites like Shaadi.com, Jeevansathi.com, BharatMatrimony, etc. in garnering more customers. From offering special schemes to helping couples in getting married virtually amid lockdown, these websites were not leaving any stone unturned to attract more customers.
Murugavel Janakiraman, Founder and CEO of Matrimony.com, whose flagship brand is Bharat Matrimony, said that the site receives an average of 14,000 to 15,000 registration in a day, but after the lockdown, there had been a rise of 30% in the number of registrations.
Similarly, Shaadi.com had also seen a 20% rise in the new customer registration during the lockdown period.
Reasons for the Growth of Matrimonial Sites
One of the main reasons behind the growth of matrimonial sites is that a majority of the professionals were working from home and had nowhere to go due to lockdown, they had ample time in hand. And that time was being utilized in browsing partners online and shortlisting profiles which were not possible earlier, due to hectic working hours and time constraints making youngsters delay their marriage.
"The engagement level of customers and profile acquisitions on our site is growing. To meet the rising demand, we have leveraged our services also" said by Janakiraman, founder and CEO of Matrimony.com
The companies were providing special offers wherein customers didn't have to pay for the lockdown days, and their memberships would be extended automatically.
Shaadi.com is one of the best matrimonial sites in India, it utilized the opportunity to enhance its reach among customers by focusing more on social media campaigns. Besides, in order to help the couples who were not able to tie knots due to lockdown, Shaadi.com had started a novel concept of “wedding from home”. The websites were providing free-of-cost services for arranging weddings virtually for couples who want to get married during the lockdown.
They helped in organizing sangeet performances by friends to even finding priests. They also arranged marriages via video call. The websites were taking measures to provide a complete marriage experience to couples. The weddings were live-streamed and the family and friends can join from across the country.
Increasing Revenues of the Matrimonial Sites
The growth in traffic and registration had led to positive growth in revenue as well, it was not linear, but still positive. In the arranged marriage set-up, most users consult their families before making decisions; and hence, in pre-Covid times, most of the traction came on weekends. But during pandemics, traffic was almost evenly distributed on weekdays, too.
Jeevansathi was one of the only businesses that grew throughout the lockdown as its billings grew by 13% in Q1 and in the month of July and august the billing growth has been even better. In August, the billing grew up to 23%. During the lockdown, the website saw more registrations and activity on the platform. Jeevansathi has upped its marketing spend leading to more new users.
BharatMatrimony, one of the first matrimony sites that leads the country’s organized online matchmaking sector with a 60% market share, Shaadi.com has 30% while Jeevansathi holds 10%. In addition to these, there are hundreds of regional, language/community-based websites and portals. All players put together, the country’s online matchmaking sector is pegged at INR 1,000 crore.
Jeevansathi generated a revenue of $10 million whereas its competitor Shaadi.com generated $40 million as of 2021.
The Video Feature
From virtual weddings to video calling, matrimonial sites are innovating matchmaking ways and this is resulting in the growth of business even during lockdown days.
Shaadi.com which is one of the most popular matrimonial websites in India launched a video calling feature that potential brides and grooms can use to interact with each other at a time when people are avoiding in-person meetings due to the coronavirus outbreak.
On the first day of the launch, the service was used by almost 75,000 users, and on the next day, it rose to 100,000 users. In less than a month, over 500,000 users have made video calls. Info Edge had also witnessed significant traffic to their video calling service as people try to reconcile with their lives using technology.
Video calling can help make these discussions a step forward, however not many would be comfortable sharing their Skype ids or Whatsapp numbers with complete strangers, that is where this option comes in handy. Bharat Matrimony takes it one step further, as they allow women to call whomever they want to while restricting men to only receiving calls and calling people with whom they have matched.
Experts say this added feature will help empower women. “It might address the phenomenon of men stalking women. Restricting men’s ownership of communication is very welcome,” said Madhavi Menon, Director of the Center for Studies in Gender and Sexuality at Ashoka University. This feature can help matchmaking platforms deepen their engagement with users, experts said.
Target Audience of Matrimonial Sites during Pandemic
Indians who are either divorced or have lost their partner are also now thinking of another partner. Rohan Mathur, the chief business officer at Jeevansathi said,
“In the last two months we have also seen an increase in second marriage profiles, and the year on year growth has doubled. Additionally, the growth seen in second marriage profiles during Covid-19 has outdated the overall platform growth”.
Another group of people increasing the number of users for these matrimonial websites are the working people that are single.
Adhish Zaveri, the Marketing Director of shaadi.com says,
“Singles were active during pre-Covid days, too, on the platform, and 70% of our profiles were made by them. The covid-19 period has certainly accentuated this. Engagement on Shaadi.com in small cities is up by 30-35%. The weddings now can be organized like small intimate ones”.
The Rise of Fake Profile
One of the negative aspects of the matrimonial sites that comes with the increased number of users is fake profiles. The number of signups has gone up by an average of 400% week on week from what it was before Covid19 which unfortunately includes an increase in the number of fake profiles. To counter them, the websites are introducing more advanced profile filtering and privacy controls technology.
The trend of increasing signups is also visible on EliteMatrimony which caters to people with high net worth and celebrities. In India, about 60 million people are looking for life partners at any given time, out of which 10 to 12 million people get married a year which constitutes 24 million couples. When it comes to online matchmaking, only 6 to 7 million registers out of which only 20% of them find a match.
Despite pandemic constraints, the wedding industry saw a surge in the number of customers and their registration on the site. The wedding market in India is valued at $50 billion and has seen a rapid annual growth rate. With the digital shift, the wedding marketplace is improving a lot of product features in order to provide a mobile app experience to its customers.
What is a matrimonial site?
A matrimonial site is a platform that offers brides and grooms to find their perfect match.
How many matrimonial sites are there in India?
There are around 1500 matrimonial sites in India, some of the leading matrimonial sites are Shaadi.com, Bharatmatrimony and Jeevansathi.
How do matrimonial sites make money?
The majority of matrimonial sites generate revenue from annual subscription services.
Which is the best matrimonial in India?
The best matrimonial sites are BharatMatrimony.com, Shaadi.com, Jeevansaathi.com, SimplyMarry.org, Vivaah.com, and SecondShaadi.com.
Which is better Shaadi.com or BharatMatrimony.com?
Both are matrimonial sites with almost similar features. Shaadi.com shows only 10 profiles per page, whereas in BharatMatrimony you can view 50 profiles per page. Bharatmatrimony.com has an easy-to-use interface whereas Shaadi.com provides more security features.
How do you find yourself a perfect partner in matrimony?
7 Tips to find yourself a perfect partner in matrimonial site:
- Find someone with whom you can connect easily.
- Do background research.
- Look for someone who shares common interests.
- Respect each other.
- Once connected, try to know more about them.
- Spend time together.
- Check their loyalty and trust.