Business Development · Business Strategy

How to increase the speed of a local marriage bureau?

Akhil Manchanda Web developer

Last updated on December 29th, 2020

We run a small(3 employees) matrimonial business in which we act as middle-man between the bride's family & groom's family. We simply search our database and match the bride & groom potentially matching each others' "choice criteria".

The process takes 0-3 days (at max, to find at least 1 suitable match satisfying the match criteria and getting it verified by local astrologer as in India 70% people believe in astrological match - kundli), but girls and guys these days reject a hell lot of profiles for xyz reasons despite matching their choice criteria. So it goes on iteratively.

Practically, it takes almost a year to finally match a couple.(when finally, The bride side says the groom is OK & groom side says bride is OK. After that the ceremonies of marriage are none of our concern)

How can I decrease this average time from 1 year to a few months?

Issue 1: We are unable to persuade the participant after some extent as he/she is not the 100% decision maker. He/She don't dare to take such a big decision on his own. In arrange marriages the parents have the upper hand which is even under high influence of relatives/family friends. No agent can be salesy in such situation despite knowing it to be a perfect match by his experience.

Issue 2: To speed up the process of matching profiles, I thought of hiring more employees but consider this scenario- Say employee 1 has met the groom1 family and got to know their choice, living standard, nature, behavior etc. "The choice criteria is too complicated to be written in a spreadsheet" Due to this, there is a lot of communication gap between employees. Every other employee will have to personally ask employee 1, if a particular bride will fit the groom's choice criteria. Eventually, groom1's profile can only be handled by employee 1. And employee1 can handle match making for limited profiles in the given time. This internal lag slows down the process too.

Shall I hire more employees for coordinating purpose or go for some software? Or any other ideas!

David M

September 13th, 2020

I don't understand the issue? You match people and are asking how to increase them getting married? Or you have a service that marries couples once they want to get married? If it is the first, have a bonus of a free Elvis wedding if they get married within 3 months of dating. If it is the second offer an Elvis wedding. Either way...the solution to all of your challenges is....Elvis! HA. I kid. There are too many people getting married anyway. Here is a challenge...match people with favorable genetics to actually produce halfway intelligent children. THAT is a novel concept. Too many dumb people having children and making...more dumb people. Dating apps are great for infectious disease doctors and divorce lawyers so maybe you could get some sponsors or investors there. :) Or work on branding. "Doesn't everyone deserve Love? No...stupid people do not need to have children." Or perhaps point out the negatives to push people in the right direction. Divorce prone..for example. Or maybe take a stance of the world ending...that will push people to speed up the process. Such as..."Lets be honest...a meteoroid is likely going to strike earth any day. Don't be picky." Or..."In the end you will both likely gain 50 pounds and be physically unappealing to each other. Go for friendship...its all you have in the end." :)

In all seriousness though, you should evaluate why people are rejecting your selections. Either you don't know what you are doing, or they don't know how to choose a significant other. Therein lies a big problem of online dating. You can not get a chance to know the person before you pass. So how do fix thatthat? You CAN offer incentives to give the person a chance. You can offer discounts. You can offer discounts with local restaurants or coffee shops for example. How might that work? You match two people up. One of them passes. BUT the next choice does not have the incentives. So the person thinks "Hmm..well I will get 25% off at the local restaurant. Might be worth meeting this person." End result you push people to take ACTUALLY interact like humans USED to do. Software for the initial matching may speed the process. The bigger issue is getting two people to actually meet. The incentive of more choices likely doesn't speed that process, but rather increase your workload. If your criteria is actually valuable and does in fact lead to people wanting to meet up, you need to figure out how to give them a nudge to meet...not make it easier for them to search more options. subjective thoughts.

Paul Garcia marketing exec & business advisor

September 25th, 2020

I'm so very much enjoying @David M's answer. Look, there are several things your description of the situation makes me question. 1) are you using any kind of automation or algorithm at all? 2) what is the size of your participant pool? 3) what are the cultural norms for where you are promoting usage of this service?

I suspect the third one has the most influence in your situation. But, lastly, when users of matchmaking services perceive that there is an unlimited supply of options, they are far more inclined to reject matches out-of-hand. If you can keep "swiping left" and continue to get more matches, then you dismiss options because it costs you nothing to get matched. Consider what motivates people. As long as your pool of candidates is large enough, there's no reason to make it easy to dismiss a match.

Back when there was no internet, matchmakers would charge for every single match. You would buy a package for 3 or 5 or 8 matches, and you would make an effort to really give each match a try because you were paying a premium for each one. If you rejected all your matches, you had to buy more. They were expensive.

My guess is that your business model is wrong, not your service.

Andy Freeman Product Management and ... - Looking for new opportunities

September 11th, 2020

I assume that your customers pay you because you have a good database and you have good judgment.

I am confused. If "the choice criteria is too complicated to be written in a spreadsheet", why do you think that "go for some software" is an option? (Yes, there are things that are hard to do with a spreadsheet that are easier to do with other kinds of software but doing things with a spreadsheet IS doing things with software.)

"The process takes no longer than 3 days"

Does it take up to three days to "search our database and match the bride & groom" on a single bride and groom? Or does it take up to three days to provide a match because you're doing other things as well? (For example, you may spend time acquiring new customers or doing other things for existing customers.)

I suspect that it's a mix of both, but what do you spend the most time on?

If it's doing other things, can some of those things be automated or done by employees?

As far as "search our database and match" goes, you don't have to automate ("do with a spreadsheet") the whole thing. I suspect that there are parts that can be automated. Or, maybe you can use automation to filter out the worst matches before you do the final match by hand. Both can save your time without eliminating your personal touch.

Idea: offer different levels of service. The more that they pay you, the more time that you personally spend on their matches. If they don't pay you much, their matches are produced by a spreadsheet.