Business Relationships: To Swipe or To Scroll?


Swiping or scrolling are no longer just for dating.

The gestures once associated with Tinder and eHarmony are now invading the business world. The tech world has found ways to hack itself into our professional lives to make it easier and more fun for us to find our next business relationships. Can these gestures work in the business context? And is one better than the other?


What is the Difference?

The “Swipe” movement for matching has been made famous by Tinder. The idea is simple: if both parties swipe in the same direction they match. If parties swipe in different directions they won’t see each other again. Potential matches are suggested based on very few criteria and first impression makes the rest. To see more matches you must however decide to swipe left or right.

The “Scroll” movement is more widely adopted. One can scroll up and down and consider options before making a choice. A Match is typically characterized by a click that suggests interests. This approach is more inclusive as opposed to exclusive. Criteria used to suggest matches can be more extensive and so is the information shared.

What makes “Swipe” and “Scroll” similar is that both create opportunities for an exchange and eventually a meetup. As you get matched the next step is to start a conversation, often via chat, to gauge the true interest in engaging into a relationship.


What Does This Mean for Businesses?

So how do these approaches compare in helping companies to build new business relationships? We put the two models to the test by asking ourselves the following questions:

  • Would the buying process be faster?
  • Would information shared be sufficient to make qualified decisions?
  • Could multiple options be compared to narrow them down?
  • Could multiple parties be involved in the decision?
  • Would control of the process be equally shared?



The Swipe model to business relationships tend to benefit a decision making processes that can be held without much information and generally carried out by single parties. It is quick and requires absolute mutual interest.

The Scroll model seems to be more adapted where decisions involve multiple parties and where information is essential to the process. The process is longer and requires a greater effort from the seller to convince buyers that have relative control of the process.

While the Scroll model tends to transform existing behaviors the Swipe mode attempts to establish a completely new buying process.

Can the two co-habitate and under which circumstance? This will be the topic of an upcoming blog post.


Post by: Fabrice