Muslima.com promotes itself as a matrimonial relationship site for those of the Muslim faith. It provides a convenient way for Muslims to meet others from all over the globe that share their background and beliefs, and hopefully find someone special to bring into their lives.
Muslima members can connect with one another through emails, instant messaging, or by clicking the "interested" feature on the profiles of other members (it alerts the person they are interested in).
On average there are between 2500 and 4500 people on the site at any given time, a large percentage of whom are looking for long-term commitment through marriage - it is one of the most vibrant in the Muslim category. However while nearly half of the profiles seem to be missing a picture, that doesn't seem to slow the goings-on of the members.
It's not the most intuitive of layouts. Most of the features are hidden beneath tabs. Make sure to click each tab to explore and familiarize yourself with the multitude of options hidden there if you choose to use the site for any length of time.
Alerts for events such as someone showing interest or adding you to their favorites, are found under the “Lists” tab, rather than showing up in your inbox like on a majority of dating sites. Newer users might not even be aware of their being added to your favorites or interested-in list, simply because those notices, along with others, are buried within the site.
The site is accessible in Arabic, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, and Norwegian. Platinum members have access to translation software that automatically translates incoming emails into any chosen language. Though of course, this can be accomplished manually via any one of the freely available online language translators.
Levels of Accounts
There are three levels of accounts: Regular (free), Gold, and Platinum; each having more features, and a higher price tag, than the prior level.
Regular members may make a profile, use the search features, send an “interest” (a quick alert saying you are interested in the other person), add up to five photographs, and read and respond to messages and instant messages from paying members.
Gold members may do the above in addition to reading messages from free members, instant messaging, sending messages that free members can read, adding a personality profile, including personal information in messages, and having their profile listed higher in the search than Regular members.
Platinum members have access to all of the site features other members do, in addition to the ability to watch video profiles, send and receive video mail, translate messages into other languages, and have their profiles ranked above both other member types. See the full list of options here.
Registration on Muslima
The registration set-up includes a series of multiple choice questions, an “about me” section, and the option to upload a photograph. The wide variety of questions provided range from basic (gender, age, location, and willingness to relocate), to specifics about appearance, lifestyle, and cultural values.
Few of the items, other than the basics, absolutely require an answer. Under religion the options are: Islam (Sunni, Shiite, Sufism, Ahmadiyya, other), willing to revert, or other. A large part of the cultural section is geared towards details about how involved the individual is in practicing their faith.
All profiles and pictures need to be approved by site staff before they can be seen by others. According to the notice provided, profiles may take up to 24 hours to be approved while pictures may take up to 48 hours. You will receive a message at your listed email address when they are approved.
For myself, my profile was approved shortly after signing up, and it was still several hours (although nowhere near 48) before my image was approved.
There are several unique search features: basic, advanced, cupid tag, keyword search, my matches, new members, latest photos, most popular, and video gallery.
The basic search asks if you are seeking a male or female, their age range, location, when they were last active, if they have a photo, and if they seek friendship or something more. The resulting list can be sorted by newest members, last active, profiles with photos first, or membership level.
The advanced search includes all of the information members fill out during set-up. It has multiple options to choose from under the categories of appearance, lifestyle, and background/cultural values.
Cupid tag allows you to search based on keywords chosen from a list that includes terms such as “decent,” family oriented,” “independent,” and “fun.”
All members may click the “interested in” or “favorite” buttons on a profile and a notice will go to that person. For something more, messages may be sent through your inbox, although only messages sent to or from paid members can be viewed without upgrading.
When you receive a message there will be a noise that might be the recording of an accordion. It's not quite the usual alert sound. To be honest, the first few times I heard it I thought a website was glitching somewhere in my browser.
For paid members, depending on their membership level, there are options for sending and receiving instant messages, video messages; and instant messaging that allows for voice and video. Instant messages may be shared between Regular members and paid members, but it takes a Platinum membership to engage in video chat.
Muslima is a vibrant online community comprised mostly of those seeking marital relationships. With the number of active members and the culturally relevant searches there is an opportunity to meet others, both afar and nearby, that share the same core cultural values and background. It's worth a peek.
By Tara Miller