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Online Dating Subscription added to national shopping basket

In the world of commerce, economy an finance, different measure are used to gauge whether a product is a niche product, a service is mainstream or an item can be considered essential. For a product or service to move from being regarded as a niche product for a sub group to a mainstream product, it needs to have a turnover in excess of 2 billion pounds.

For government, one of the key indicators of a product that is essential to the general population is when the product or services is included in the government imaginary but significantly important average item a British household regularly have in their “shopping basket”. For the first time, subscription to online dating site was included in this government “shopping basket” , the cost of the shopping basket is used to measure inflation.

Including dating agencies and dating site subscription is and important indication of how technology and lifestyle has changed. Other technology based new items in the shopping basket includes smart phones and apps. “Powerful smart phones and the applications that run on them have become essential for many when communicating or seeking information,” according to Phil Gooding, a statistician at Office for National Statistics. Commenting on why online dating sites was added to the consumer price inflation, Mr Gooding said “Increasing numbers of people now seek a partner via Internet dating sites.” It is well know that single parents in particular use niche dating sites such as parent dating to find partners.

The monthly national shopping basket is based on 650 items in 12 sectors of the economy including food, clothing, housing and household services, furniture, transport, recreation and culture and restaurants and hotels.

Given that supermarkets which are traditionally associated with shopping baskets have expanded into selling virtually everything including houses, maybe we will start seeing “Sainsbury’s dating” or Tesco Match in the near future.