Tinder: Likes & Matches at First, Then Stops?

Here’s why your Tinder account gets a lot of likes and matches at first, then abruptly stops receiving them:

The biggest reason is that Tinder boosts matchmaking for new users. 

On top of that, user behavior helps to refine the algorithm, and it’s possible that quality matches are favored over high numbers of matches. 

There are also natural forces, like the number of users in your area, that affect how often you match.

So if you want to learn all about why you get likes and matches on Tinder at first and then that suddenly stops, then this article is for you.

Keep reading!

Tinder Likes & Matches at First, Then Stops? (All the Info)

Is Tinder Algorithm the Reason Why the Tinder Likes And Matches Stopped Coming? (4 Factors)

Tinder is a modern app, so it’s safe to assume that it is governed by some powerful algorithms. 

Tinder’s programming is not public knowledge, but based on how it works and how tech works in general, we can make a few assumptions together.

For instance, Tinder is going to try to refine its matchmaking in order to boost user participation and retention. 

That’s how the app makes money. 

Getting more users and keeping them on the app is key.

So, it makes sense that the Tinder algorithm would try to increase the quality of its matches over time. 

That seems like something people want. 

So, when we review Tinder from this perspective, it’s easier to understand why a few trends are consistently observable, and it can help you think about what you can and cannot control in order to get more and/or better matches when you use the app.

#1 Boosting Newcomers

Tinder has not officially confirmed this practice, but user testing suggests that it is true. 

Here’s what happens. 

When you create a new Tinder account, for a brief period of time, your account is boosted. 

You are artificially matched with more users than you normally would be, and this is for two reasons.

First, the boost makes the app more encouraging to use, and it helps with user retention. 

Since Tinder sells matching boosts, introducing users to the feeling of having a lot of matches is seen as a good marketing technique.

Second, and arguably, more importantly, the boost helps Tinder generate more unique data tied to your account. 

You will get more responses, interactions, and ratings, and all of that is used to help you make better matches down the road.

This is probably the leading reason why matches drop off after a short period for new users.

#2 Interactions

A second reason is that the Tinder algorithm is fairly complicated. 

Like many tech algorithms, this is kept secret, but it is believed that having more interactions on Tinder will help you make more matches.

It’s the same concept that governs a lot of social media. 

Things that are seen as popular are pushed because more people are likely to appreciate stuff that is already popular.

Why does that matter for new users? 

Well, the tendency for a new user of any app is to use it a lot at first. 

Then, over time, usage often wanes. 

That means that as a new user, you’re generating more raw interactions with the rest of Tinder. 

When you take a break or use the app less, you generate fewer interactions.

The algorithm picks up on that, and it suggests you as a match less often.

#3 Settings

The default settings for Tinder give it a lot of freedom in what it can do and how it can interact with your devices and accounts. 

Most importantly, the default settings give Tinder a lot of freedom in how it interacts with your profile and information on the app. 

Ultimately, Tinder tries to use this freedom to generate more matches for you.

Oftentimes, new users stick with default settings. 

Then, over time, people become more familiar with the app and customize their experience.

As you do this, you might restrict some of Tinder’s freedom. 

As you do, it inevitably leads to fewer matches.

If this combines with an expired newcomer boost, you’ll see a compounded reduction in new matches, and everything is that much more noticeable.

Here’s an easy example. 

You can pick the match radius according to your preferences. 

While things are going well and you are getting a lot of matches, you might decide to reduce that radius for the sake of convenience. 

It’s perfectly reasonable. 

But, when you start getting fewer matches, the radius restriction only adds to the problem.

Now, you can always adjust settings according to your preferences, so if you think it will make a difference, you can revert settings or even try to optimize them for better matches. 

But, a lot of newcomers don’t understand that their match rate is likely to decline over time, and similarly, they often misunderstand the power of these settings.

#4 Restricted Access

This doesn’t apply universally, but it’s worth mentioning. 

Depending on how you use Tinder, the app and algorithm can decide to restrict how often you match or even shadowban you. 

There are no specific rules for what leads to these “shadow” punishments, but some ideas persist.

Some speculate that swiping right on every single profile will get you a shadowban. 

Certainly, if you regularly make other users uncomfortable reporting you, shadow restrictions and bans are more likely. 

In general, if you use the app to try to connect with people in a genuine way, this won’t be a problem.

But if you do get restricted access, your match numbers will fall through the floor.

Besides Tinder’s Algorithm, Why Do You Get Fewer Matches? (3 Things)

The algorithm controls matches, but it’s not the only reason why you might experience this phenomenon. 

It turns out that even the algorithm is subject to natural forces, and in Tinder terms, that has a lot to do with retaining users and getting new users.

It’s easy to understand. 

If only 10 people used Tinder in the whole world, there just aren’t that many possible matches. 

You’ll pair with everyone possible, and then that’s it.

Fortunately for users, Tinder has a considerably larger pool than that. 

Still, mathematical limitations do come into play, and you’ll see that it has to do with where you are, how you use the app, and how Tinder itself is run.

#1 Running Out of People

This is another common reason for fewer matches over time. 

When you first get to Tinder, every single match is brand new. 

You can sort through them and swipe however you feel. 

As you do, you eliminate potential matches from the pool.

Eventually, you can eliminate enough matches that it gets a lot harder for Tinder to introduce you to someone new. 

This is especially a problem for anyone who lives outside of a metropolitan area. 

If you’re in the suburbs or even a rural country, there aren’t as many people to find in the first place. 

Once you burn through potential matches, you’re pretty much out of luck.

As mentioned before, expanding your radius can help with this, but there are limits to that. 

Being around more people is the best solution, and that’s not always a realistic option.

#2 Inconsistent Growth

Related to the idea of running out of people, the Tinder app itself can have large-scale versions of this problem. 

As users eliminate each other from the match pool, Tinder needs new users in order to keep things lively and functional.

So far, Tinder has maintained positive user growth over the years, but that growth has not always been consistent

The most recent years have seen growth slow down.

So, if you’ve already hit a lull in your match rate, it’s getting harder to pull out of that lull because there aren’t as many new users every year as there used to be. 

That creates downward pressure on match rates, and it’s not something that’s likely to be easily solved.

The truth is that Tinder had a lot more growth potential before so many people jumped on the bandwagon. 

From here on out, it’s going to push into the margins of market saturation, and continued growth will prove difficult.

Now, think about how this is multiplied by the limitations of the app. 

How many new people can join Tinder each week in your area? 

Tinder might keep total numbers up by expanding to new countries and regions, but where it’s already established, stagnation is a real threat.

#3 Being in the Popular Gender

This is another common problem, and there aren’t obvious solutions. 

To put it simply, Tinder is much more popular with males than females. 

According to Statista, more than 75% of users on Tinder are male. 

That’s an app-wide statistic.

So, if you are male and looking for females, you’re fighting an uphill battle from the start. 

Three-quarters of the user base is eliminated before you finish your profile. 

From there, every swipe left is eliminating another member of your dating pool. 

Yet, if you always swipe right, you might get shadowbanned. 

It’s not an easy spot to be.

The only real way to solve this problem is to even out the distribution of users, and that’s not something that is approachable from the user end.

To put this simply, the reason you run out of matches on Tinder is that more likely than not, you are a male seeking females, and the match pool just isn’t big enough to sustain new matches indefinitely.


  • Theresa McDonough

    Tech entrepreneur and founder of Tech Medic, who has become a prominent advocate for the Right to Repair movement. She has testified before the US Federal Trade Commission and been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, helping influence change within the tech industry.

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