COVID has changed online shopping forever as consumer preferences have shifted and the convenience of quick delivery without leaving home has surpassed the in-store experience altogether. Retailers have been forced to re-evaluate the framework of their offerings and deepen their relationships with customers through digital offerings. Clyde is a provider of extended warranties that integrates directly with the checkout processes of e-commerce merchants, giving consumers a seamless and convenient way to protect their purchases while retailers are able to add incremental revenue to their online sales. Clyde works with all the major e-commerce platforms through plug-and-play integration and also offers a flexible API option for custom integrations. On the backend, merchants can monitor the entire warranty program including performance, claim status, and customer information while Clyde handles the entire claims experience. Merchants using the platform are able to increase the warranty purchase rate to 18% from the industry average of 4%. AlleyWatch caught up with CEO and Founder Brandon Gell to learn more about the AHA moment that led to the formation of Clyde, the importance of building customer loyalty in the digital commerce era, the company’s strategic plans, latest funding round from investors that include Headline, Vulcan, Spark Capital, and Crosslink.
Customer Experience (CX)
The pandemic has amplified the importance of a robust digital customer service experience. Yet most solutions on the market provide a simple live chat function, which really does not adequately address the needs of today’s modern customers. Glia is a native digital customer service platform that allows consumers to interact with their choice of messaging, video, or even voice. The platform features the ability to collaborate with its CoBrowsing function that allows customers to get the help that they need while jointly navigating sites, eliminating any confusion or uncertainty. AlleyWatch caught up with CEO and Cofounder Dan Michaeli to learn more about how the platform enabled its partners to support customers during the lockdown, the company’s expansion plans, and recent funding round led by Insight Partners.
Kustomer, the customer service messaging and management platform, has agreed to be acquired by Facebook. While the terms of the transaction were not disclosed, it has been widely reported that the transaction value is $1B.
Since launching in 2018, real-time market research platform Suzy has been making strides in introducing technology to a traditionally fragmented, slow, and expensive industry. Suzy’s advanced research tools enable brands to make data-driven decisions with quality consumer insight in an agile offering. Presently, over 200 brands including Johnson & Johnson, Chipotle, and Citibank partner with Suzy to capture their customer insights and 500M+ consumer research responses have been recorded on its platform. The company is on pace to do $20M in ARR this year. AlleyWatch caught up with President Avi Savar to learn more about the market research industry, Suzy’s growth plans, and recent round of funding from investors that include Rho Ventures, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, Triangle Peak Partners, and Foundry Group.
The pandemic has led to a profound increase in online consumer spending online with an increase of 52% or $466B between March-September. Yet for startup employees, the uncertainty of the economy can be worrisome. E-commerce transaction marketing platform firm Rokt raised an unexpected Series D round to provide some liquidity to its employees to serve as reassurance and support its growth. Rokt powers the “AHA-moment” of many large online merchants like Ticketmaster, Fanatics, GoDaddy, and Staples and offers seamless add-on purchases from both the merchant and its own marketplace. In less than a year, Rokt’s valuation has increased by 42% to $450M+, the company is on track to expand its headcount from 260 to 400 by the end of 2021, and the company’s weekly revenue averages $2-3M per week, back to pre-pandemic levels. AlleyWatch caught up with CEO and Cofounder Bruce Buchanan to discuss learn more about the motivation for this funding round, Rokt’s plans to expand into new verticals and markets, and the company’s impressive traction. The company has now raised a total of $162M in funding from investors that include Square Peg Capital, Moelis Australia Asset Management, Time Inc., TDM Growth Partners, Lachlan Murdoch, Greg Roebuck, and John Ho.
The importance of CX can not be understated. Yet as we adopt all these new technologies to better improve the customer experience, we end up creating siloed and disparate sets of data across multiple channels. Frame AI leverages machine learning and AI to synthesize your entire CX stack to deliver accurate insights in a fraction of the time it would take using other means. This leads to better customer experience.