SEO Quality Score Tool Startup Secures $4M
Today, the software engineer and marketing entrepreneur officially unveils WordStream, a "software as a service" (SaaS) firm, and announces the appointment of Rob Adler to president and CEO. The company has received a $4 million Series A funding round from Sigma Partners.
WordStream, Kim's first shot at commercializing the SEO tools, aims to reduce cost-per-click campaigns and increase quality scores by automating repetitive and time-consuming tasks related to search marketing. The application finds relevant and non-relevant keywords, organizes them into groups, compiles the data, and assists marketers in writing targeted ads to support SEO campaigns.
Excellent keyword research and organization is the key to success in both paid and natural search optimization, according to Kim. There's a ton of work that takes place today in Microsoft Excel that goes beyond identifying the initial keyword list, he said. For instance, the application offers an analytics tracking package similar to Google's.
"You put a small piece of Java script code on the footer of your Web site, and every time a visitor goes to your Web site via a search engine, the keyword that led to the discovery would be phoned home and stored in the database," Kim said.
Boston-based Sentry Auto Group President Chris Lemley began using WordStream in November. In the first six weeks, the impact on the company's search engine quality score more than quintupled, from .3% to nearly 2%, though costs stayed the same, he said.
Paul Flanagan, managing director of the Boston-based venture capital firm appointed to WordStream's board, said there are plenty of reporting tools from Google and other search engines that help brands understand success or failure of campaigns, but the SaaS application automates the process and provides suggestions on how to build the campaign. "There are a lot of tools that report back to you, but this makes suggestions on how to build the campaign," he said.