ShopVisible Sees the Money
January 28, 2008
ShopVisible, an Atlanta startup that you probably haven’t heard of yet, has just raised an angel funding round of less than $1 million. The company is selling a platform that allows e-commerce to occur in a search engine optimized manner. Websites that use generic software for their storefronts are often hindered by the lack of search engine friendliness.
Consider that even blogging software will default to cryptic URLs, which are definitely search engine and user unfriendly, and you’ll quickly understand why this type of service is necessary. The goal here appears to be to reduce the amount spent on online advertising and instead spend some of the savings on a better designed site. If a site is better designed and optimized for relevant search terms, the site should fare much better in organic search results. Most users, myself included, trust organic search results way more than paid advertising. Truth be told, I use Adblock Plus in Firefox so I don’t even see most ads.
As an example, take a look at one of their clients – Serv-U. They are highly ranked for the search terms bar equipment (currently Serv-U has the top spot on Google), bar supply (#3), bar decor (#4), bar refrigeration (#1), bar glassware (#2), and restaurant glassware (#1). If that doesn’t tell you these guys have something going on, I’m not sure what will.
ShopVisible started as an idea in 2001 but it took on a new dimension in 2005 when inventor Josh Lloyd teamed up with Bryan Kujawski. Bryan was formerly a co-founder of 360i which also does ad management and search engine optimization. Sean Cook joined them as CEO in 2007. By the way, Bryan and Sean you need to make your LinkedIn profile URL more search engine friendly. :-)
Interesting in the funding round is that it seems to have been done through individual angels and without the engagement of an angel group. This is definitely a more time consuming way to raise money but if your deal is worthy of being funded, things get done quickly. I’ll talk more about the angels who were involved in this deal in a future post.
So congratulations to these guys for raising a good chunk of money to help launch their company. I’m looking forward to seeing the progress here and seeing if the ShopVisible platform can gain enough traction with customers.