Ezoic Raises $5.6M to Introduce Multivariate Testing for Web Masses

11/13/13Follow @bvbigelow

Ezoic, a three-year-old startup that provides automated Web analysis to optimize the layout of its customers’ websites to maximize their ad revenue, is stepping into the light today, saying it has closed a $5.6 million Series A round of venture financing.

The London venture firm Balderton Capital led the round, which was joined by another London VC, New Amsterdam Capital, Silicon Valley Bank, and private investors.

Ezoic, based about 35 miles north of San Diego, in Carlsbad, CA, uses what’s called multivariate testing to optimize the layout of its customer’s websites. In the same way that an optometrist switches lenses during an eye exam, Ezoic measures various changes in a website layout, comparing and contrasting hundreds of design changes to optimize overall usability.

The company says its technology remains in private beta development and has been tested on more than 400 private websites, each providing information on topics that range from crochet patterns to Roman history.

Ezoic founder Dwayne Lafleur sold his previous startup, Cubics, a display ad network focused primarily on Facebook app developers. Kansas City-based Adknowledge acquired Alberta, Canada-based Cubics in 2007 without disclosing financial terms.

The first blog entry at Ezoic explains, “At Cubics, we had a amazing engineering team, a team of data scientists and all the resources in the world working on solving the typical ad network problem of ‘What ad do we show to this user right now?’ Despite all our resources and all our efforts, we were never able to match the results that could be gained by having the application developer improve their layout. It was then that I realized that we were all working to solve the wrong problem. In 2010, we started Ezoic to solve the right problem.

“The goal at Ezoic is to help the owners of small informational websites improve the layout of their websites to maximize revenue and enhance user experience.”

The company says its technology enhances overall user experience and improves advertising revenue for web browsing by desktop and mobile devices. Ezoics makes money by taking 20 percent of advertising revenue once a website has been optimized.

In a statement today, Ezoic says the funding will enable the company to accelerate its software development and officially introduce its automated Web service by the end of March.

In the statement, Ezoic’s chief customer officer John Cole says, “Independent website owners currently struggle to compete with larger digital publishers who are better resourced to create and test a large number of layouts for all devices. Ezoic aims to level the playing field by offering a fully automated platform for digital publishers who want to improve user experience and ad income.”

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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