Sramana: What were you doing with your technology? I understand that you collected and categorized customer feedback. Where you then making recommendations when they cam eback to the site?
Graham Cooke: It’s more than that. We wanted to learn, from the 4% of users who gave feedback, how to solve issues for all users on the website.
Sramana: How do you determine what would be applicable to users who do not give feedback?
Graham Cooke: You look at the user journey. If all the customers are getting to the basket and not buying, and then you get feedback from that 4% saying that they are not buying because you don’t ship to the US, then you have a clear understanding of the problem. If you did indeed ship to the US, then you would set up a personalization for those users to make that evident to them when they added something to the basket. That could drive conversions by 30%.
Sramana: At this point you had a product that allowed you to build a customer base and an initial round of funding. How far were you able to get with that initial round?
Graham Cooke: We were generating a lot of revenue from our customers so we were able to keep growing quite a lot. We did one more angel round in 2012. We had a lot of interesting people who offered to invest in the business, including a managing director at Google and a former CEO of a huge banking group. We felt we needed some more capital, and we wanted to bring these people in as advisors. We did an undisclosed round, which let us grow faster. The major investment round we did was last November , with Balderton. Up to that first round, we had raised close to $2 million. We had revenues in the $2 million to $4 million range.
Sramana: You raised money from Balterdon in November of last year. How much did you raise?
Graham Cooke: We raised $7.5 million.
Sramana: You then found yourself in a position where you were heavily capitalized. What did that enable you to do?
Graham Cooke: The big moves started in the beginning of the summer of last year. We had been approached by a lot of VCs, so we started to think about how to focus on our business. In a startup you don’t have room for distractions. We really focused in on e-commerce businesses and enterprise commerce. We focused only on B2C. We focused on rebranding and repositioning. By the beginning of this year, we had locked down that Qubit was about driving conversions for B2C e-commerce businesses, and that our technology was all about combining tag management, visitor analytics, AB testing and personalization, and putting it within a single, integrated platform.
When we looked at our competitors, there was only one company that did this, which was Adobe. They did not have a single customer that was using all of their technologies, and they had acquired 50 companies to provide the same thing. We had built it from the ground up, and we were able to offer it for much less money.