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10 April 2021

Improve user experience and achieve record revenues during a pandemic

Dating Central Europe was founded in 2014 to become the market leading online dating company in Central Europe. The company operates the market leader Hungarian dating site Randivonal, in addition to several smaller online dating sites tailored to various target groups. Co-founder and managing director Péter Weiler has 20 years of online expertise and is an iconic figure in the world of Hungarian digital media. Ever since its founding in 1999, the DACE flagship product, Randivonal, has defined its mission as helping people find meaningful relationships and a partner for life quickly and efficiently over the Internet. 

The main ambition for the company is to ensure that Randivonal remains the most popular online dating service provider in the future, putting customers at the center and continuously implementing new developments based on the latest international trends to help users find new partners.

 

Part of this ambition is also to continue the growth path and keep improving the customer experience. 2020 had many challenges for everyone. At DACE.hu besides all the Covid-19 related matters there was another big project ahead: improving the subscription model.

 

At randivonal.hu there was a unique subscription plan that was in place for many years, but it was extremely complex and had to be simplified. Not only from a business perspective, but especially from a user’s perspective.

 

Optimize subscription logic on their flagship product randivonal.hu: 

Randivonal subscriptions

 

Randivonal had a 2-tier subscription model since day one when subscriptions were first introduced to the platform (“Gold” and “Platinum”). The issue with this structure was that the Platinum plan allowed members to use the messaging service without any payment leading to a high number of low quality messages for Randivonal’s paying subscriber base – plus DACE was missing out on additional revenue potential!

 

The solution: introduce 1-tier model without Platinum features

 

The DACE team, supported by the Russmedia Equity Partners team, ran a structured pricing project, did a lot of research and also gained insights from users and other similar companies on pricing, user behaviour, conversion rates and messaging

 

LEARN WHAT THE CHANGE WILL BRING

 

To be careful, we launched the new subscription gradually and extensively monitored & compared the results.

 

Along the process we were mostly following:

  • key indicators (conversion, renewal rate, cancellation rate, revenue/user)
  • activity (messages/conversations, logins, number of likes and profile visits, account deletion/hibernation, non-returning users)
  • demographics (indicators were also checked in different age/sex segments)

 

First phase

 

We started testing the new model on new registrations, who (probably) had no prior experience or knowledge about the site & services. 

Conversions dropped slightly in some male demographic groups (mostly irrelevant demographic groups: under age of 30 and above 60), but it was compensated by the increase in subscription prices. On the other hand women’s rates increased significantly. The most important female demo groups saw an increase of at least 60%.

 

Second phase

We then started rolling changes out to existing users. After making sure that the experience was positive with new users, we started migrating old users, gradually. 

 

We monitored (re)conversion, net revenue/user, activity and cancellations. Customer service continuously reported complaints and chargeback claims, which turned out to be extremely low. Only a few dozen claims were recorded and a couple hundred euros of chargebacks altogether. 

 

Renewal cancellations were higher in test groups, but most of those users repurchased their subscription after seeing that the system still delivers the best value to the users and they can meet exciting new people.

 

Full launch & later performance

 

After making sure that our main KPIs increased and the decrease in activity is manageable, we introduced the new subscription system to everyone.

 

Changing the pricing and the subscription model for randivonal.hu was a big project for the company. It involved many hours of research, development, testing and it was certainly not stress-free. But the DACE team managed to make this big shift, significantly increase the user experience and achieve a 20% revenue increase in the process.

 

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