Dec 6, 2021 - Business

Austin-based Bumble revamps matchmaking algorithm

A photo of a hand holding a phone with the Bumble app on display.
Photo illustration: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Bumble, the Austin-based dating app maker, unveiled a new profile design for users and revamped its matchmaking algorithm, the company announced Friday.

The big picture: The update prioritizes placing a person's pronouns and interests immediately after their first photo, which the company says will help users' determine whether they've found a potential match sooner.

  • The update also recommends which picture should lead users' profiles, and Bumble touts the feature has already led to an increase in matches.
  • Plus, Bumble's matchmaking algorithm has been rebuilt with machine learning technologies, learning from past customer behavior to deliver matches.

What they're saying: The company says it's already seen an increase in the time spent on profiles, indicating that users are intent on learning more about potential matches before moving to the next.

"We know making informed, intentional moves leads to better, more meaningful matches in the long run and we've developed a dating experience that delivers upon that in many ways," said Miles Norris, Bumble's chief product officer.

  • "Now our customers will be able to showcase themselves in a deeper manner with more non-photo information, resulting in more matches and good chats, while an updated algorithm is showing them the people they really want to see and get to know."

The big picture: Bumble has faced recent bumps in the road as shares of the company fell more than 20% after its latest quarterly earnings report.

  • For the first time since Bumble went public, the company posted a decline in overall user growth, Forbes reported.
  • The number of users on Bumble-owned Badoo, the popular dating app outside the U.S., also fell, which CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd attributed to the pandemic and payment issues for Android users.

Still, Bumble's app saw revenue rise, and JPMorgan analyst Cory Carpenter told Forbes the damage to its stock was "overblown."

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