How Does Bumble Work? A Comprehensive Guide

Online Dating | | , Relationship Writer
Updated On: January 13, 2024
how does bumble work

Meeting new people virtually has now become the norm and led to a mushrooming of dating apps in cyberspace. Even though there is a plethora of options to choose from, Bumble remains one of the most popular dating apps, and with good reason. So, if you’re looking to connect with like-minded people and further your romantic prospects in the process, this can be a good place to get started. But how does Bumble work?

It’s important to know the answer to that question to be able to get the most out of the time, effort, and money you invest into this platform. That’s precisely the question we’re here to address today. In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything from Bumble features to pros and cons, and how people of different sexual and romantic leanings can leverage it optimally.

How Does Bumble Work?

Bumble is a dating app that seeks to empower women by giving them the power to decide whom they want to talk to. Which means women message first, every time. It works differently than other dating apps. That’s the broad answer to how does Bumble work.

Now, let’s get into the technicalities and address another vital question: how does Bumble algorithm work? In most ways, the Bumble dating app works pretty much like any other popular dating app, be it Tinder or Hinge. From setting up your Bumble account to swiping through potential matches and messaging to connect – the broad strokes remain more or less the same.

You get started by setting up a Bumble account and getting it verified. A new user is then open to exploring countless profiles of other users based on their preferences and dating profile settings. To set up a dating profile on Bumble, users have to:

  • Install the Bumble dating app from Play Store or App Store
  • After you download Bumble, you can sign up using either your Facebook account or your phone number
  • Once your phone number or FB account is verified, you can start creating your Bumble profile
  • For making your Bumble profile, you will be asked to upload at least one solo picture of yourself
  • You will also be asked to authenticate yourself by replicating a pose to get Bumble verification
  • It is important to choose the right profile photos so people will swipe right on you. You can add a maximum of six photos. It is advisable to add photos in which people can see you or identify you. Adding photos with a large group of people does not work in favor of getting more matches because it becomes difficult to tell who the profile belongs to
  • You are then taken to the ‘Introduce Yourself’ page where you have to fill out details about yourself such as what gender you identify as, your birthday, and your name
  • You will be directed to a page where you have to select from the three modes of the app. You can either choose Bumble Date for finding potential dates, Bumble BFF for finding new friends, or lastly Bumble Bizz for casual professional networking and set your Bumble filters accordingly
  • After that, you have to set your preference on whether you would like to get Bumble matches from men or women or everyone
  • Next comes your Bumble bio – make sure you write something that reflects your personality
  • Once you’re done setting up your account and selecting the Bumble mode you want to surf other profiles on, you’re good to go!
  • To send a like to a profile, swipe right. To dismiss a profile or remove it, swipe left. You also have the option to block in case you come across a profile you wish to avoid
  • There is also a report option that lets you flag profiles in case a user is impersonating someone, sending unsolicited texts, putting someone else in danger, being offensive, etc. The report button is meant to make the app experience safe and secure for Bumble users
  • You can use Bumble coins to upgrade your account to the premium version of the app

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Bumble Key Features

Bumble works like most popular dating apps but has many added features that make it a crowd favorite. The Bumble app works in two modes, the free version and the Bumble premium. Not all the features for both modes are different, though Bumble premium has all the features of the free version, with added benefits.

Anyone can sign up for free and choose to buy a premium plan at a later stage. You can also choose to stop paying for Bumble premium and get back to using the free version, although the added features will be removed once your premium pack runs out. It is a location-based dating app, which makes it simpler to find people near you just by setting the Bumble location filter to your liking. Here is a detailed lowdown of the app’s free and premium features:

Features of the free version of the Bumble app include:

  • Swiping on a limited number of profiles a day
  • Access matches
  • One Bumble boost per day
  • Filter profiles based on preferred age, location/distance, and gender
  • Send texts, voice notes, and photos

Features of Bumble Premium include:

  • All of the features of the free version, along with
  • Ability to access your Bumble Beeline – the match queue
  • Chance to re-match with expired connections
  • Bumble Boost for every match
  • Re-do left swipes made by accident
  • Use SuperSwipe
  • Boost yourself with Spotlight
  • Get unlimited swipes every day
  • Unlock unlimited advanced filters
  • Be able to match with people using TravelMode
  • Be able to use Incognito mode for added privacy

One of the most frequently asked questions about the premium version of the app is, “How does incognito mode work on Bumble?” The “Incognito Mode” can be found in the settings of your Bumble premium account. When using this mode, a Bumble user is hidden from every other profile, and their identity is only revealed to the profile they swipe right on. The Incognito Mode can be easily disabled from the settings.

To truly understand the answer to how does Bumble work, you need an insight into its unique features such as BFF, Boost, and Spotlight. So, let’s get started.

How does Bumble BFF work?

Bumble BFF works the same way as Bumble Date or Bumble Bizz. The only difference is that Bumble users in the BFF section aren’t looking to exclusively date but rather to make friends, or in technical terms, to find someone for platonic dating. You still have to swipe right on profiles that you’d like to be your BFF and swipe left on profiles of no interest.

Bumble filters also remain the same as does the time restriction for sending and receiving the first message within 24 hours of connecting with someone. You can, however, save a match in your Bumble match queue using Bumble Boost. All in all, there isn’t much difference between Bumble BFF and other Bumble modes.

Related Reading: Platonic Soulmate – What Is It? 8 Signs You Found Yours

How does Bumble Boost work?

You can use Bumble Boost to revive your expired matches on Bumble. Those using the free version get one Bumble boost per day and users with a Bumble premium subscription plan get the option to save all expired matches in their match queue. When a Bumble chat starts and both people text each other within 24 hours, the gray circle around their profile picture turns yellow.

What is Bumble Spotlight?

The Bumble Spotlight feature is exclusive to the paid version of the app and can be used to access a wider user base and get more matches.

Bumble pricing

There is a stark difference in how the Bumble algorithm works in the free version versus the premium. As with any popular dating app, here too there are many options to choose from when looking to buy a Bumble Premium subscription plan:

  • 1 week at $19.99
  • 1 month at $39.99
  • 3 months at $76.99
  • Lifetime for $229.99

Besides the premium plan, you also have the option of an in-app purchase of Bumble Boost, at:

  • 1 week at $8.99
  • 1 month at $16.99
  • 3 months at 33.99
  • 6 months at $54.99

Of course, you can always just download Bumble and use its free version. You can also recharge your free version of the app with Bumble coins if you wish to upgrade to premium any time later.

How does the Bumble algorithm work?

Like many other dating apps, the Bumble dating app also hasn’t made its algorithm public. So, there we cannot give you an accurate answer to how does Bumble algorithm work. But we can make a pretty good guess at how it works, based on its features. It uses an algorithm to match users based on their interests, values, and preferences.

Bumble, like other dating apps, promotes well-made profiles, so one needs to know how to make an effective profile. Meaning if your profile has blurry photos, offensive prompts, unclear location details, or the like, then you will be shown fewer matches. On the other hand, well-made profiles with good-quality pictures, interesting prompts, and more interactions in a day are promoted by the algorithm and shown to more and more Bumble users. One of the most important factors is having a good Bumble bio.

A pro tip to make the algorithm work for you is to give your profile a makeover with the best possible photos and prompts and by using respectful language.

Related Reading: Online Dating Profile Examples To Attract Men

Bumble Pros And Cons – See If It’s The Right Fit For You

While Bumble has been a pathbreaking addition to the work of online dating, it has its share of drawbacks and areas where it could use some improvement. If you’re still not quite sure whether it’d be the right fit for you, a close look at the Bumble pros and cons may help you make up your mind:

Women make the first moveBumble users on the free version can’t access their match queue, aka people on the Bumble Beeline who have already swiped right on them
The free version has many good features, and you can find friends through the BFF mode, and network professionally through the Bumble Bizz modeMen often fool the algorithm by putting their gender as ‘female’ to be able to send the first text
Inclusive, fun, and safe space for LGBT+ members to navigate online datingThe paid version of the app has a lot more exciting features, but the subscription is on the costlier side
Privacy and security are a priorityNo way of telling if a profile is legit or fake

How Does Bumble Work For Women

The Bumble app was created as a feminist counterpart of Tinder, giving women full control to make the first move and revolutionize online dating for women.

Monica Anderson, Emily A. Vogels, and Erica Turner of The Pew Research Center wrote in a study, “30% of U.S. adults say they have used a dating site or app. A majority of online daters say their overall experience was positive, but many users – particularly younger women – report being harassed or sent explicit messages on these platforms”.

So, Bumble has taken it upon itself to provide women with additional safety features such as the ability to hide their profile from certain men, and the ability to message first. This ensures that women are in control of all interactions on the app, making it a safe and secure platform for finding potential dates.

So, how does Bumble work for women? Well, in the case of heterosexual matches on the online dating app, women must send the first message within 24 hours or they lose the connection. After she has sent the text, the man must also respond to the first text within 24 hours or the Bumble chats disappear and the match is lost. In the case of queer matches, if they both identify as females, either can send the first message, but here too, the recipient must respond within 24 hours or the connection is lost. Being mindful of the 24-hour window on the first interactions is the key to figuring out how to make Bumble messaging work for you.

In both cases, once both parties have exchanged their first texts, the 24-hour restriction is removed. From here, you can take the conversation forward at your own pace. Although there is a pressure to send the perfect first text. Also in both cases, women can still use the option of Bumble Boost to extend their connection if a match expires.

The Bumble app also provides features other than texting for ice-breaking such as GIFs or question prompts. Let’s take a look at how does Bumble work for guys next.

Online dating

How Does Bumble Work For Men

After going through so many features for women, it’s only natural to be curious about how does Bumble work for men and whether it is any different. Bumble more or less works the same way for men as it does for women. They get access to a number of dating profiles which they can then swipe right or swipe left on. The only difference is that men aren’t allowed to send the first text even if they match with a woman.

After getting a match, they must wait for the women to send an ice-breaker text within 24 hours and must also remember to respond to it in 24 hours. It is important to start a good Bumble conversation. However, it is important to mention that men can also use Bumble Boost to extend one match on the free version and get unlimited boosts on the premium version. In the case of same-sex couples, either party can initiate a conversation, although within the time frame of 24 hours.

Related Reading: 12 Best Polyamorous Dating Sites For 2022

How Does Bumble Work For The LGBT+ Community

A study by Molly Grace Smith of the University of California says that sexual minorities are more likely than their heterosexual counterparts to use mobile dating applications. Queer women identify the internet as a powerful means of connection, yet their use of popular dating apps has received little scholarly attention.

It further stated that queer women reported that matching with other users reduced uncertainty surrounding sexuality, since there is a broad sexuality spectrum, and reciprocity of interest, and the apps provided a visualization of other queer women and gave rise to a sense of community.

So, how does Bumble work for LGBT+ community? Well, Bumble’s foundations are pretty heteronormative, but they deserve credit for expanding the platform to include all types of romantic and non-romantic matches. Bumble matches work the same for all users. Be it same gender matches with two non-binary people, or more matches with people who identify as other gender or sexual orientation on Bumble, the rules are always the same.

Although the app was initially created to empower women and give them the ability to control the narrative of their online dating experiences, it is growing as a leading dating app for the LGBT+ community, too.

“I definitely enjoy the ‘on my terms’ aspect of Bumble,” says Koby O., a queer woman who has tried a variety of dating apps before. “I liked that when I matched with men [on Bumble], they couldn’t message me first, but if I matched with a woman or non-binary person, either one of us could message first. It definitely reduces the instances of grossness or inappropriate solicitation,” she told Teen Vogue.

A 28-year-old Abby says, “There is the most number of queer women on Bumble from what I’ve found. So ultimately, of all the dating apps I’ve used, I’ve met the most women through Bumble.” It seems that Bumble is one of the most preferred apps by the LGBT+ community to find their future beau.

Related Reading: Top 12 Best LGBTQ Dating Apps- UPDATED LIST 2022

Our Verdict

our verdict

Key Pointers

  • The dating app, Bumble, is a fan favorite among women and the LGBT+ community because of how inclusive and safe it is
  • There are multiple premium plans to choose from on the Bumble app as well as a fairly functional free version. Users can also opt to not sign up for premium or renew it
  • Many fun features such as Bumble Boost, Superlike, the option to block a profile, etc make the app feel like a safe space
  • Users can opt to sign up to either date, make friends or make professional connections on the app’s different modes– Bumble Date, Bumble BFF, and Bumble Bizz

Bumble is a fun way to find connections whether you are looking for casual dating, finding a partner, making friends, or networking for professional growth. The app’s algorithm gives priority to making women and people of the LGBT+ community feel safe and in control by giving them the lead in making conversation and the options to block or report certain malicious profiles. Bumble for dating is one of the most inclusive and safe apps on the market for women and people of the LGBT+ community to find potential dates.

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