Arriving at the FriendFinder front page, you'd be forgiven for thinking this is some smaller site still stuck in the late naughties. It's true to say that the design and layout is somewhat dated and congested. Nevertheless, there's enough on the landing page to make you want to give it a shot; real members are showcased, there's a community area suggesting some kind of vibrant networking as well as the hint of webcam chat capabilities – not exactly “new” technology but still something that hardly any dating sites make use of (surely it's a no-brainer to let people have a face to face chat before they take the plunge to meet in person?) Another element that suggests bigger and better things lay in wait is the wide list of languages and countries that are available, not something that a small site tends to be able to offer it's users.
Our FriendFinder Review
The registration process is simple enough, allowing you to specify the country and region you'll be looking in, as well as the expected gender and age answers. Interestingly, you can even check member results before you register, but rest assured that provided you're not living in the Outer Hebrides, this site has most places well covered.
FriendFinder.com asks you to verify your email before you can get full access to the site, presumably to cut down on spam registrations and non-genuine, non-serious daters. It's easily done with a verification link being instantly sent to your email and you only have to click it to gain entrance into the main single members area of the dating site.
Having previously given our dating review treatment to other sites on this network such as AFF (an adult, casual dating site), GFF (the gay brand) and a few others, the actual structure of the members' area is very familiar. However, rather than being filled with scantily clad singles, it's a lot more wholesome due to the segregated database. This is a site for people that are looking for serious relationships after all, and it's a relief to confirm that FF doesn't mix the two very different audiences.
FriendFinder - How Does It Work?
A lot of the features are similar though and believe it or not, this actually works well. It's no secret that the cross-section of brands that Friend Finder Networks has available allows them to generate a lot more members (and revenue). This in turn, has meant significant investment in the dating features that can be used for searching or communicating.
An example of this from a search perspective is Friend Finder's 'VIP' or 'Hot or Not' search options to help you find single people in your local area. VIP lets you look only for paying members (who tend to be more serious about finding love online) or the latter lets you search in the Tinder styled one click for 'like'/ another for 'not interested'. These are a nice break from the normal search by age/ sex/ location that most sites (including this one) offer as standard. Be warned though, while searching is free it does require an upgrade to actually communicate on the site.
Speaking of communication, this again is an area that Friend Finder have clearly thought about and borrowed from some of their other brands. One example is the Chat Room (who mentioned age/ sex/ location?!) where you can step inside and announce your need for love in front of a “room” full of single minglers. If you're more a one on one kind of person, then there are also the more typical icebreakers (such as flirt or adding a member to your 'Hotlist') or good old fashioned messaging (either instant where the object of your affection is concurrently online or email style).
Other interesting areas that kept us busy during our review of Friend Finder include the Community section, which is full of blogs and other user generated content, and the What's Popular tab that let's you check members, videos, photos, etc that are getting the most attention (trending).
Our Conclusion: Is FriendFinder Worth Checking Out?
All in all, Friend Finder is a nice site packed full of useful dating features and accompanying guidance. Most importantly of all, thanks to the power of the Friend Finder network, FF is teaming with profiles to flick through at your leisure. If you're based in any of the locations our testers checked the site (US, UK, Ireland, Australia, Canada) we can certainly vouch for the user numbers. Given the power of the brand and the language options, it's likely that most other places are well covered too, leaving us to feel that this site definitely deserves our recommendation as a site to try during your internet dating journey.
As usual here, we'd like to remind you that there is no ONE SITE that can satisfy everyone. The secret to internet dating is to be open to trying various dating sites and giving each a decent chance before moving to the next ones. Finding love online takes effort folks, but you only need to see a couple in the street to know that it's worth it <3