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General public attitudes towards online dating have become much more positive in recent years, and social networking sites are now playing a prominent role when it comes to navigating and documenting romantic relationships.These are among the key findings of a national survey of dating and relationships in the digital era, the first dedicated study of this subject by the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project since 2005.Women are around twice as likely as men to ask for assistance creating or perfecting their profile—30% of female online daters have done this, compared with 16% of men.

Some 66% of online daters have gone on a date with someone they met through an online dating site or app, up from 43% of online daters who had done so when we first asked this question in 2005.

Moving beyond dates, one quarter of online daters (23%) say that they themselves have entered into a marriage or long-term relationship with someone they met through a dating site or app.

And 38% of Americans who are single and actively looking for a partner have used online dating at one point or another.

Compared with eight years ago, online daters in 2013 are more likely to actually go out on dates with the people they meet on these sites.

At the same time, the proportion of Americans who say that they met their current partner online has doubled in the last eight years.

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