Update 11-07-2019: I first rated 2 stars, but things got worse... here is the 2 star review first... scroll down for the update.
My name is Bas, I am from Holland and have been a software developer for 18 years, so I might have a little bit higher expectations from a software company. I want to share my experiences with WPDating.
- Mediocre platform with buggy core functionality (navigation, messaging, payments and chat)
- Misleading product descriptions (App source code not PhoneGap)
- Friendly but slow and incompetent support staff (poor English and technical understanding)
- Word Press is not suitable for a (successful) dating platform
Our experience with dating platforms on Word Press have led us to this conclusion. It is not really suited. It’s nice to have a go at a dating platform for pennies on the dollar, but you need core functionality like messaging and payments to be flawless and that proved to be an impossible task.
As for WPDating. I think they do try to create an okay platform, but they are stuck on legacy. The installation guides are not up-to-date and you get various different instructions sent by mail. Out of the box a lot of core functionality was not working. Messages got lost, emoticons were not working, integrated chat was not working (payed external party extremely expensive) and the payment system is (still) very buggy.
We tried to get things fixed, but it took us over 4 months to get an below average experience. This was mostly due to communication issues. WPDating always waits until the very last moment of their response window to respond to a request. They are always polite. But often do not understand what you want. Even if you send a document with screenshots and extended explanation… they manage to turn things around and fix maybe 1 small issue that is not relevant. Only when escalating to their owners they suddenly woke up and started working. In my experience these issues could be fixed by 1 or 2 developers within 1 week… but due to the slow communication it was 4 months. The only reason we kept on going was because we had a successful dating site with 1.800 members and counting…
Then the App… it is advertised as built with PhoneGap, a development platform for multiple devices (Android, iOS) which I have experience with. But when bought I got a link to source code of a Native Android app… a completely different language. I tried to get more info but they did not seem to understand my question a was just sent different versions of tutorials how to install the environment and eventually also source code of a native iOS app.
Meanwhile the payment system was still flawed and people were not able to buy a membership. And we could not give them one manually through the backend because they were corrupted. So, we parked the App development and tried to focus until this was resolved… which took weeks on weeks before they came with an email stating EXACTLY what I said in my first email… that there was something wrong with the expiration date. Really?! SIGH!!!
After this (5-6 months) the website was working okay, but we decided to look for a partner in Holland to build a new one, because the delays on support questions was really killing for motivation and progress. And customers we’re really dissatisfied for things not working… and we could not do anything about it. Frustrating.
In the light of the new website I decided to ask for a little understanding from WPDating for the whole process and ask our money back for the App source code, which was not the source code advertised and we did not use anyway. Again, after completely misunderstanding my request and wanting to fix our messaging problem (which was already fixed) and sending us new source code (which we cannot use and will not because of the new website) they pointed us at the terms which stated that you have to decide within 10 days for a refund…. Which is total BS, because any mail conversation with these guys will cost you 2 weeks to get your question across.
At this point I decided my patience was done with these guys, so I thanked them for trying but that I was going to warn the public to think twice about doing any business with them, because this experience has been mediocre to say the least.
Ok if you want to burn some money and want to try out a dating platform and see if people will register before investing 30k-100k for the real deal. But if you want a good working system to begin with... stay away...
--- Update 11-07-2019 ---
Okay, so suddenly after 10 days, the day after I posted this review, WPDating responded to my refund request. And a 5 star review appears right after it also!
First the for the 5 star review (Trust Pilot) from Kristin Graham from Thailand (?!)... Try looking up that name and see if you can find her... I did a google image search on her profile picture and found a striking match for a woman called Kristin E. Haule from Los Angeles. As far as I can tell she's not married or has any connection to Thailand. Whoops!
Ok, the next 5 star review (Trust Pilot) from... Paul Jackson from Germany, who is also known as Paul Shapiro, an Animal Advocate from the USA. Look it up people!
If you right click on the profile image and get the image address (or url) and you enter that url in google image search (click on the camera icon in the search box of google) you will find out more about the people behind these 5 star reviews. Very informative.
As for their response... they said sorry and said that I was wrong about the source got which really was Phone Gap, and we're willing to do a refund.
They said Cordava framework is supposedly a Phone Gap based technology. So I went back and checked and must admit it is Cordava, but Adobe PhoneGap is based on Cordava and not the other way around. And you cannot edit Coradava projects in Adobe PhoneGap (which I had installed)... you need Android Studio for that, so hence my confusion (and my apologies for not looking any further).
As for the refund, I asked for the full amount of the app source code ($399) since I have had no use for it. I which they replied, again pointing at their terms, that they cannot do that. But they were willing to refund $100 if I did as requested: "but for that you will need to write some good reviews for us removing the old one that you have posted in different sites" - Nick M, Technical Support, WPDating
If you managed read through to here I think you can guess where they can put that $100... I'm bringing this review down to 1 star. These guys are a total fraud and I cannot imagine anyone building a successful dating site with this broken mess.