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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Read 62 Zoosk Customer Reviews and Complaints

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Average Consumer Rating: 1.3
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 1 4 star: 2 3 star: 1 2 star: 7 1 star:  51
Bottom Line: 6% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 62
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  • Censorship and trampling free speech

    • Escondido, CA,
    • Aug 24, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have a paid membership on the social dating website ZOOSK, and for the last few months, I have been censored on my profile, not being allowed to post any text, even though I am following the guidelines with precision. I expressed discontent with the website, but that is not against the guidelines, so they are censoring me because they disagree with my opinion? My first amendment rights are being trampled by this website, and even though I have tried many times to contact them to let them know what is happening, nothing has changed, and they charge but have no refund policies in place. Every single day I am being censored. Someone has to put a stop on Internet companies that don't follow the law of our nation. FREE SPEECH!

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

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  • 1 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Zoosk SUCKS

    • Georgia,
    • Jul 15, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    DO NOT USE THIS SITE. It's a SCAM. You won't find anyone that you can hold an intelligent conversation with. They're complete IDIOTS. Those profiles don't belong to the idiots you'll end up talking to. Sad! I would absolutely NOT recommend this site to anyone but, the government, 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

    Save your money. Scam.

    • Brisbane, Australia,
    • Jul 13, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    "Greetings are fun, but if you're really interested send me a message". So I subscribed and sent a message. Then I discovered that even though I sent a message, she can't reply unless she is also subscribed. Either that or I cough up some more money so others can reply.

    And also, there is no record of her even viewing my profile, so now I'm convinced it was an auto-generated message to get me to join.

    $39 sure is a lot of money to sign up for something that doesn't even allow basic features. It's amazing these sites get away with this nonsense and that the creators aren't sitting in a prison cell somewhere.

    DO NOT JOIN.

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

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Awful, such a waste of money

    • Pennsylvania,
    • Jul 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    They make you pay a minimum $20/ month...and for what?! You have people blowing up your phone from 200+ miles away.

    The advanced search doesn't apply to people that try to contact you. I wasted more time weeding out everyone who lived 2 hours away, then actually finding even one potential prospect!

    What a scam, definitely not even worth $1.

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

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Shady tricks to take your money

    • Ontario, Canada,
    • Jun 12, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    When you click the "like" button on other users, you will start getting messages that seem to be from them - but they are not. These are a scam to trick you into subscribing.

    When you do subscribe you will be offered a package, but when you go to pay, there will suddenly be an additional $25 charge on top of the price the quoted.

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

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Horrible

    • Massachusetts,
    • Apr 30, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I canceled my subscription to Zoosk one day short of two weeks from when my paid subscription ends. When I canceled, they stated that my paid subscription ended that day before the one day shy of two weeks

    I was a member of Match as well and they responded by offering a discount and not ending my paid subscription when I decided not to stay a member after my paid subscription was over. Match.com did not stop my paid subscription, which is the required legal response.

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

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Just about useless

    • North Carolina,
    • Mar 14, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Zoosk is just about useless. It will present you with profiles that typically include images of lots of people, but it seems to me that with even the most basic of technology that the app should be able to narrow down who you are presented with and who you are presented to. If not, why should I bother to fill out a profile of who I am most interested in. Take for example someone viewing me, I should not show up in a feed of someone who does not match what I am looking for but the vast majority of "views" are from people who are not even a remote match for who I am seeking. The app should be able to filter this. It is a waste of time for them to see me and for me to have to delete them. Likewise with the carousel, the only demographic it seems to match for is age range. Of the 50 people on any given carousel, only 1 or 2 fit the general profile that interest me - black men. I spend an inordinate amount of time clicking off/blocking people who are white who I am sure are very nice but not within the demographic I am looking for.

    The lack of filtering by the app is annoying.

    I also find it annoying that the "view" notification, notifies both parties even when there was not an intentional view. To me, a view should be I see the picture, and open the profile. Not the app has sent me a picture, forces me to interact with it by hitting the X, or arrow to pass forward, and then notifies the other party that I viewed when I did not. I know most of the views I am receiving result from this ridiculous set up so you do not know who actually took initiative to "read" my profile, "view" me.

    I will not renew my subscription. I have tried other dating apps. I do not remember them being as useless as this. More random notifications of people who really didn't "look" is not better than having less notifications that reflect people who actually did have some initial interest.

    If you sign up, just do a month. If you like it, then do the multi-month plan. I return to the site only because I have paid for it. When it ends, I will not be back.

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

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  • 9 out 9 people found this review helpful

    Scam

    • United Kingdom,
    • Jan 16, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Having joined Zoosk, I realized quite quickly that I had been scammed into joining. Before you join, your "who's viewed you" screen shows that numerous of the same people are viewing you, but this is NOT the case! Having spoken to the people that supposedly viewed me regularly, they said they only viewed me one time. I am going to do all I can to let as many people know this site is a scam. Thank you for robbing me and scamming me. Good work Zoosk, well done!

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

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Save your money...

    • British Columbia, Canada,
    • Jan 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have used other online dating sites such as Match.com and eharmony in the past. They both provide good customer service in my opinion. Then I heard about Zoosk via email. What an absolutely horrible experience from an organizational and customer service perspective. It’s generous even giving Zoosk one star out of five. Buyers beware. They are a nightmare to deal with.

    I purchased a 6-month subscription around mid-2018. Just before my expiry in December 2018, Zoosk sent me an email offering me 25% if I renew. Along with the email, and just after my subscription expired, I also received notifications that people on Zoosk had sent me messages. So I bit and renewed again. Only to discover that I was charged the full amount for 6 months and the messages from these so-called "people" appeared computer-generated?

    So I attempted to contact Zoosk on both the non-discounted price and the assumingly fake profiles out there. They informed me that I needed to pay by credit card (which I did via PayPal) and gave no answer to the seemingly "computer-generated" email messages received from potentially fake profiles. I then contacted PayPal to at least recover the 25% off ($19) - which they did.

    About a week later, Zoosk emails me informing me that my subscription was canceled, yet I paid for 6 months? So I called them. Zero help, and they wouldn’t even allow me to speak to a supervisor. Exact words from the customer service agent were: "I spoke to them and they do not want to speak to you. Your account has been blocked as it is our company policy to close an account when a dispute is raised via a 3rd party." I then inquired that when I get my full refund via PayPal (for obvious reasons), what would stop me from re-joining Zoosk (just to see what he would say)? To which the agent responded, "Sir, you have every right to attempt to re-join, but there is no guarantee that our system will not pick it up and block you."

    I’ll end by saying I simply wanted to be treated like a customer who has genuine concerns and honest questions. Why they chose to skate around the "real truth" and force me to gain mediation via PayPal is mind-boggling? Save your money, folks, and happy searching.

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

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Scam

    • Mississippi,
    • Dec 3, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    No one writes back; they are paid by the company or are fictitious characters. Do no waste your money. Scam. There are other ways to meet people. This is another way to make someone rich.

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Very few real profiles.

    • Colorado Springs, CO,
    • Nov 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I tried using Zoosk for a couple of days free to check it out first. The second day I sent a smile to this seemingly attractive woman my age, and she immediately messaged me back. In order to read what she wrote, I had to pay. So, I did. As soon as I paid and went onto the full site, the message was just an urging from her to buy coins. A supposed member trying to sell me upgraded services? SCAM!

    Since then, this site has the most unattractive and unkept women I've ever seen. Also, whenever I view someone with any potential, they never view me back. Really? When I get a notification that I've been viewed I have to 'view' them back just to see who they are, so why wouldn't someone who I viewed at least click on my profile to even see who I am? I'm not talking about a message response, just to see if I'm being viewed. It's required of me, why not them? I'll tell you. Because these are fake profiles that aren't representing a real person behind them.

    Also, Zoosk doesn't even allow you to see what a potential match is even looking for as far as age range. EVERY site has that. Lastly, their carousel is a joke. They give you a time frame to pick a person with just their pic. They could be in another state and you still have to pick NOW. In conclusion, Zoosk is just an entertainment site with zero substance and is potentially conning the public out of money. I wouldn't recommend anyone pay this company and the authorities should shut them down.

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

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