Overview of affiliate programs
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Traffic arbitrage

Dating in 2023: How is it going?

Vertical dating has always been a niche, either for newcomers or for seasoned arbitrage giants. While everyone is pouring into gambling, suffering from bans, and battling with the moderation of Facebook and other social networks, those who invest in dating (especially mainstream dating) continue to profit from people's desire to make new connections and flirt.
Has the vertical of dating changed since 2020? Not very much, to be honest. Push notifications still work the same way, and the cost per lead in the USA remains one of the highest (while Tier-3 countries offer a chance to get a lot of cheap traffic). Creatives still require careful consideration, whether creating new ones or selecting existing ones.

Of course, adult dating will yield more immediate profits. However, mainstream dating should not be underestimated either: with "white hat" dating, you can achieve a stable income in the long run.

Dating 2023

When working with dating offers, it is essential to first determine the GEO (Geographic Targeting). What might work perfectly in Europe or the USA may not perform well in Tier-3 countries. Therefore, it is crucial to pay attention to narrowly specialized products.


  • Google Ads. Contextual advertising still brings profit. The drawback is that you'll need to overcome ad network moderation (for adult offers and quick earnings) or plan budgets for long-term profit in mainstream dating. One possible option is to create a review site for dating services and apps and then launch contextual advertising on it.

  • FB, Instagram (prohibited in the Russian Federation), and other social networks. The main social networks for dating today are FB and TikTok. In the first one, you can run targeted ads to your desired audience (though you'll have to use white offers or cloak), while the latter can provide a lot of conditionally free traffic. However, everything will ultimately rely on developing creatives that will pass moderation.

  • Push and more. Buying impressions in push notifications is not difficult, but finding high-quality traffic is essential— the same combination can perform differently depending on the platform where it's displayed.

  • Advertising on adult platforms. This includes "adult theaters," thematic websites, forums, and more. As usual, people visit such sites for obvious reasons, and if you show them your banners, pre-rolls, or native ads, you'll reach your target audience.

  • SEO. It may seem strange to some, but search traffic works well. For advertisers, it's the most favorable option as they receive genuinely interested audiences. You can create a review site for dating services, promote it with chosen keywords, and make a profit.

  • UAC and others. Dating apps are familiar to all. Nowadays, their advertising can be found on FB, VK, Instagram, and other social networks. However, recently, according to Darina, Business Development Manager at AdsEmpire, the volume of traffic from this source has slightly decreased as passing moderation has become more challenging.
Of course, these are not all possible sources. You can also drive traffic from messengers (e.g., Telegram), attracting users from VK, FB, or TikTok to your messenger channels.


As always, it's essential to start with the GEO and target audience. A narrow target audience (such as LGBTQ+, mature, or others) sets specific conditions for creating creatives. It's crucial to look into spy services and see what competitors are using.

IMPORTANT: Avoid using aggressive approaches, although they can be effective as well. The key is to present them correctly. For example, a girl in a bikini may not be promoting certain services for money but inviting people to join a community of cosplayers, fitness enthusiasts, etc.

In general, don't declare or promise that users of your app/website/service are ready to undress upon demand (people may not believe this, and the source's moderation may ban you). Instead, emphasize that they are looking for a "real person," a "reliable partner," and so on. Even if you are promoting an app or website for adult dating, it's better to show in the creatives that it's about "a live person seeking communication with the possibility of something more" rather than "I'm ready and undressed."

The key is to approach the advertising in a more subtle and relatable way, focusing on the genuine connection and desires of the target audience, rather than resorting to explicit or aggressive tactics.
1.Consider your target audience. Everything is standard—Latin America (Latam) and Asia are accustomed to brunettes (as they see them around them). But you can explore how creatives with redheads or blondes perform—these are rare archetypes for the local audience, so they might resonate better than the usual ones. By the way, if you are advertising for adult content, you can check the audience taste statistics by GEO on Pornhub.

2.Abandon masks and gloss. It's best to use photos in your creatives where people look natural. Moreover, they may appear unattractive to some. However, "homemade" unprocessed or unretouched photos will evoke more trust than pictures from Vogue or Cosmopolitan.

3.Localize your creatives. This applies not only to language but also to the portrayal of people in the images. Therefore, it's recommended to pay attention to local photo stocks specific to the target GEO. After all, few people will "fall for" a photo of a Chinese person when targeting audiences in Iceland. Well, a user might react, but it will likely be only 1-2% of your entire audience.

Questions and Answers

Konstantin Guberkhanov, Team Lead Marketing at Alfaleads

What sources are effective?
Today, TikTok is performing quite well, and the industry giants continue to invest heavily in push traffic. However, email databases, as well as social media groups and channels (VK, Telegram), are still effective. There are also emerging trends in more expensive sources, such as contextual advertising and review websites. With the advancement of chatbots, there are webmasters who have learned to build converting funnels based on them.
What creatives attract people?
In this regard, the approaches have not changed much. We recommend using highly realistic creatives without flashy gloss. Adaptation based on GEO is welcomed, but using overtly aggressive approaches is not advisable.
How has the vertical changed since 2021 (or even 2022)?
On the one hand, it has become more challenging to acquire traffic volumes. Previously, we witnessed a vast amount of traffic from UAC (User Acquisition Campaigns), but now, approximately 95% of all creatives get rejected during moderation. On the other hand, alongside the standard Tier-1 GEOs that remain popular, Tier 2-3 countries are becoming more prevalent. There is also a trend of narrowing down the target audience, as some advertisers are now focusing on active and financially capable men aged 45 and above.

Darina, Business Development Manager at AdsEmpire

What sources are effective?
Affiliates mostly work with Google, banners, FB, member area, and TikTok. There is a significant amount of traffic coming from social media. Overall, all sources convert well, and it all depends on the skills of the affiliate, testing, and the ability to find the right approach in the combination.
What creatives attract people?
It depends on the offer, niche, and GEO. If it's granny, mature, or gay audiences, then corresponding creatives should be used.

For example, when targeting Latam, creatives featuring dark-haired ladies might perform better than those with blondes, considering national preferences and stereotypes. However, we also recommend testing non-standard approaches, as they can have a great impact. The type of traffic should also be considered when creating creatives.

In the case of push notifications, for instance, more attention is given to the clickable text, as there is limited space for girl's photos.

In summary, creatives should be bright and attention-grabbing to capture the audience's interest and make them want to click. Using real photos of regular people is preferable, and the creative should have a natural look as overly glossy images might not instill trust. To find a converting creative, continuous testing of different approaches is necessary.
How has the vertical changed since 2021 (or even 2022)?
During this time, the dating niche encountered the impact of COVID-19. The pandemic and quarantine measures led people to desire more social interaction and communication. Over this period, the time spent by individuals on the internet increased, as did the number of dialogues, resulting in no shortage of users willing to register on dating platforms.

  • People are seeking light-hearted, enjoyable conversations, flirting, and emotional connections. Many affiliates have become more actively involved in mainstream offers.
  • While the focus was primarily on adult offers before, it has now shifted slightly.

Regarding GEO, affiliates have been more active in working with Latam, Asia, and Oceania. Compared to Tier-1 and Europe, these GEOs face less competition and are not as saturated.

Overall, the beauty of the dating niche lies in its stability. The niche continues to show consistently high volumes and results.


Dating is alive, has lived, and will continue to live. Regardless of the events of 2021 and 2022, people want to meet, communicate, and experience emotions. Advertisers offer them various apps, services, websites, and more to facilitate these connections. Therefore, it is possible and necessary to earn from this— the key lies in choosing the right GEO, offer, and approach.