About Zoosk

Established in 2007 and based out of San Francisco, CA, Zoosk is an online dating service that helps millions of individuals find their most compatible matches based on similar interests, passions, goals, and more. A highly funded company that is backed by a variety of big-name ventures, Zoosk caters to all demographics, regardless of age and/or sexual orientation. While Zoosk is available internationally and in 25 different languages, the bulk of their services are primarily geared for a U.S.-based dating audience.

Zoosk Features

Getting started with Zoosk is fairly straightforward, and completely free. First, you’ll need to fill out your personal details (e.g. height, ethnicity, current relationship status, religion, educational level, etc.), and answer a few questions (e.g. favorite music/books/movies, your ideal dating experience, etc.). Then, after confirming your email address, you’ll be able to immediately start browsing profiles and pictures of other singles, as well as view additional information such as their interests, stories, relationship status, and more.

When searching for other singles, you can narrow results within a certain distance of your location, and can also filter by religion, body type, children, etc. One of the unique features about Zoosk is their “compatibility” feature, which works by listing your compatibility level with another single based on your answers to a certain set of questions, such as: “How important is physical appearance to you?” or “How important is it to keep your word?” You can change your answers to these questions in order to fine-tune the results, but only once every 24 hours.

Also, members can play the Zoosk Carousel game, which is where random individuals in your area are displayed, and you’re then given the opportunity to specify whether you’re interested in meeting with them. If so, you can notify them of your interest directly through the site, and will receive a confirmation should the other user be interested in meeting you. Once this occurs, the only way you’ll be able to view their contact information is to “unlock the Mutual Match” at a cost of 20 Zoosk coins, which we’ll discuss in more detail in the following section. On the other hand, if an individual plays the Carousel game and lands on your information, they can also send you a connection request.

Additional Zoosk features include the ability to send and receive “winks” and “flirts” to other individuals, to send virtual gifts, and to receive notifications every time someone views your profile. Perhaps the biggest benefit of using Zoosk is their Scientific Matchmaking Service (ZSMS), which is a patent-pending technology that evaluates compatibility between members. From our experience, the ZSMS is fairly effective, and works by learning your “yes” and “no” votes to better match you with other users.

Other minor Zoosk properties include the ability to gift Coins, a proprietary text and video messenger system that allows you to communicate directly with other members, as well as Facebook and mobile apps.

Zoosk Pricing, and What You Get for Your Money

As we mentioned at the beginning, joining Zoosk, starting a profile, and viewing other members’ profiles is completely free. However, any additional options are severely limited—so much so, that effectively using the site without paying money is next to impossible. With this said, almost every feature on the site uses Zoosk Coins as a form of currency, which can be purchased in bundles:

  • 180 Coins = $19.95
  • 480 Coins = $49.95
  • 1800 Coins = $99.95

In other words, the more Coins you purchase at one time, the more money you’ll save. Also, you’ll likely want to sign up for a subscription, which is required to make full use of Zoosk and connect to other users, including sending messages and winks, chatting with other members, seeing who’s viewed your profile, and fully capable ZSMS. Subscription pricing is as follows:

  • Month-to-month = $29.95 per month
  • Three months = $19.98 per month (one payment of $59.95)
  • Six months = $12.49 per month (one payment of $74.95)

In more specific terms, you’ll save 58% by signing up for the six-month plan, versus paying month-to-month for the same period of time.

Here are a few of the benefits you’ll gain access to after purchasing a Zoosk membership and/or Coins:

  1. The ability to send unlimited messages to other users, as well as to view the messages other users have sent to you. Without a membership, you can send one message to an individual, but will be required to purchase a membership in order to send additional messages.
  2. Without a subscription, once another user views your profile, you’ll be able to see their name, age, city, and one picture. However, in order to view their full profile and make a connection, you’ll need a subscription.
  3. After playing the Carousel game, you’ll need 20 Zoosk Coins in order to view the profiles of individuals who have viewed yours, as well as to make a connection with someone who wants to meet you.
  4. Using Zoosk Coins, you can boost your popularity to the point where your information appears at the top of the search panel, which will significantly increase the chances that others will view your profile.
  5. The ability to send virtual gifts.
  6. The opportunity to send messages in a Special Delivery format, which notifies the recipient that they have a special message from you.
  7. Message delivery confirmation, which also provides notification when the recipient reads your message.

Depending on your plan, you will automatically be billed unless you cancel in advance. It’s also important to note that Zoosk will refund your money only if you cancel your subscription with three days of making your purchase. Otherwise, you will lose the ability to get your money back.

Is Zoosk a Scam?

Zoosk is a big, reputable company, and is backed by numerous major venture capital firms. However, it’s strategically designed so that users will willingly choose to pay more and more money in order to capitalize on its full set of features. Here’s why:

If you’re a guy (just for the sake of conversation), and an attractive, young blonde woman based in Beverly Hills sends you a flirt, direct message, or even just views your profile, you’ll be instantly mesmerized. As a result, you’ll likely want to see her full profile, connect with her and engage in conversation, and see where it leads. But in order to satisfy these desires, you’ll have to purchase Coins or a subscription. From a stark business perspective, the Zoosk dating service would not be as effective if they didn’t allow users to first become “hooked” on the free service, and then want to pay more money to fulfill their emotions.

But here’s where the red flags are raised: Remember the beautiful blonde from Beverly Hills? Well, there have been numerous complaints that “overly-attractive” model-like women have contacted users under false pretenses, which were only discovered after users spent money to contact them. There have even been some accusations that some of these fake accounts belonged to Zoosk staff, though there is no evidence of this.

After signing up for the service, you’ll almost certainly be approached with “traditional” scamming methods, such as another user requesting money to get back to the U.S. after being stranded abroad. In fact, we experienced this within only a couple hours after signing up for an “undercover” Zoosk account. In addition, you may also run across several accounts that are really just fronts for adult services providers. So while Zoosk itself is not a scam, there are plenty of individuals out there willing to take your money if you’re not careful.

If you decide to sign up with Zoosk, we recommend that you take caution, and not be too hasty in giving out personal information such as email addresses and phone numbers. If you’ve sent a couple messages and/or chatted with someone on a few occasions, and they’re also taking their time, this is usually a good indication that they’re legitimately searching for someone, just like you are.

See also: Watch Out for These 6 Red Flags When Dating Online

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21 Customer Reviews for Zoosk

Average Customer Rating: 1.4
Rating Snapshot:
5 stars: 0 4 stars: 1 3 stars: 1 2 stars: 3 1 stars: 16
Bottom Line: 5% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 21
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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Stay away, not worth the money nor your time

    • Annapolis, MD,
    • Oct 29, 2016

    I had over 8 scam artists contact me through this site. Had married men ask me out, and more requests from men for one night stands.

    I finally met a nice man and been dating him steady for almost a year. After dating about a month, we both terminated our profiles.

    My best friend was on the site the other night and came across my boyfriend's profile which I know has been deleted.

    So she had a male friend check out the site and locate my profile that I deleted almost a year ago. I was shocked!

    Stay away from this one!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Absolutely Poor

    • Minnesota,
    • Oct 17, 2016

    I've found my girl, no thanks whatsoever to Zoosk. The profiles on this website are fake, and the system for finding a match is useless. I message them demanding a refund, but all they can do is send an automated message replying, “Sorry for the inconvenience, re-subscribe!”

    I don't care if they state "nonrefundable". If their business is falsely advertising, and manipulating people's feelings to get money (and from what I hear over-charging canceled accounts, fortunately my card ends next month), then they ought to be shut down.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Not like the ads

    • Melbourne,
    • Sep 26, 2016

    I was a bit disappointed. This is just not at all like the ads portray it to be.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Complete scam

    • New Zealand,
    • Sep 22, 2016

    I was tricked into subscribing when I thought people have messaged me. Turns out they are all automated messages sent by Zoosk, not the members itself. They are started with something like “Thanks. If you are interested or Thanks!” I noticed.

    What a complete scam. Very disappointed. Would give negative stars if there would've been an option for it. Now I have to figure out a way to unsubscribe which would be a bloody mission to do considering they are all about scamming your credit cards!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 10 out 10 people found this review helpful

    Buyer beware with Zoosk

    • Grand Rapids, Michigan,
    • Feb 10, 2016

    I sent numerous, very noninvasive messages, and didn't receive a single response. Some of these messages were to people I know on Facebook, that would normally respond, but I did not get a response from. I'm slow to cry wolf, but this site is highly suspect, and I would say borders on, fraudulent. My gut says that all the responses to winks are computer generated, and 90% of reviews online say the same thing.

    It's hard to believe that it has great ratings, because I smell a big scam!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 9 people found this review helpful

    Complete Scam

    I'm good looking and messaged many, many people nice messages and got zero replies other than automated ones from winks. It claims people want to chat with me, but then when I attempt and send them a nice message they ignore me. I suspect that most of the female profiles on here are not real. My mom said that she used to be a member and got a bunch of messages so I suspect there are a bunch of real male members and mostly fake female members. That is why she got so many messages because most of the women are fake. Also they keep deleting a picture where I have my shirt lifted and they crop another picture where I have my shirt lifted to just show the face. They never said anything when I joined about only face pictures being allowed. If they did I would have never joined. Plus they said that you have 3 days to cancel after joining for full refund and I canceled the next day and they said it was non refundable.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Zoosk is a scam website.

    • West Palm Beach,
    • Jan 8, 2016

    Zoosk is a scam site, when you open an account there, after a few hours of a day they close the account and never refund you and if you try to contact them, they fail to respond. Be very careful and I advise you look for another dating site and do not patronize Zoosk.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Scam

    • Dec 22, 2015

    Don't bother. It's a total scam.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 10 out 10 people found this review helpful

    They're all fake.

    • Austin, Texas,
    • Dec 5, 2015

    I sent a message to over 60 real people just to see if I get a reply and I didn't. I am a good looking guy and I even started targeting very ugly people which would probably do anything to have a date with me, and still nothing. This is fake.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Dec 8, 2015

      Darrell

      Same experience. I received winks and messages for women and when I replied, while I see they are online and they are the ones initiating the interaction, I get nothing in return. I have a subscription but I refuse to buy coins so, I will never be able to message, flirt or chat with any other member unless I buy coins, on top of my subscription. I am opting out and I would not recommend this site to anyone looking for a good dating site.

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  • 9 out 9 people found this review helpful

    E-mails don't appear to get delivered although I subscribed and paid for that feature.

    • Ten Mile, TN,
    • Oct 31, 2015

    I noticed that no one responds to an email, even though they are listed as a Zoosk member. I complained to support and they blew a line of smoke evading the issue. I sent 31 test e-mails requesting that the person simply acknowledged that they received the e-mail. Not a single person responded and Zoosk customer support ignored the problem indicating by that action this is probably a company policy with the goal to sell e-mail confirmations before allowing delivery. The last complaint I sent was totally ignored. I would think that at least one person would respond since the message indicated a test.

    I tried a similar approach on Christian Mingle and received a response after sending only three e-mails.

    I don't think any e-mails that I sent through Zoosk have been delivered.

    I suggest that a government authority set up male and female accounts on Zoosk, take out subscriptions, and then try sending e-mails. I think there is a high probability they can prove fraud. Maybe you should try this test yourself and publicly post the results.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Oct 31, 2015

      James Thompson

      This is an update to the complaint I posted. I filed an official government complaint: IC3 Complaint: I1510250727226682. After I complained Zoosk cancelled my paid account without previous notification. I grabbed all of the documentation before they kicked me off the site. They probably thought they were clearing everything but I was ahead of them expecting them to cancel me. They "claim" to be refunding my money to my debit account, which I have not yet confirmed to be true. I tested some e-mails of the few people I found on an active chat line knowing that they by definition were subscribing members. I finally got one response. When they cancelled my account I had no way to remove my account. It appears that they force people to leave inactive accounts on their site. I also should note that the first response I received from a free wink was nothing more than an automatic response from an inactive account. It is clearly evident that they send automated responses to entice new subscriptions.

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  • 5 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Rip-off

    • North Berwick, Scotland,
    • Oct 21, 2015

    This site is a rip-off. They encourage you to join and then ask for further payment for 'coins'. You receive messages from Zoosk stating this person wants to meet you but you must pay in 'coins' to find out who! Unbelievable and I do not know how the authorities have allowed Zoosk to get away with it.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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