UPDATED 03:01 EDT / MARCH 19 2020

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Insight Partners leads $100M round for user feedback startup UserTesting

UserTesting Inc., a startup that helps companies such as IBM Corp. gather user feedback about their digital products, has closed $100 million in fresh funding.

Announced this morning, the investment was led by Insight Partners with participation from returning  backers Accel, OpenView Venture Partners and Greenspring. UserTesting has raised more than $185 million in funding to date.

The San Francisco-based startup operates a cloud-based platform that allows companies to perform virtual focus group studies as part of their website and application development projects. UserTesting provides access to a pool of more than a million crowdsourced testers, along with tools for gathering sentiment data.

A software-as-a-service provider can employ UserTesting to gather customer feedback about an experimental feature before releasing it into general availability. An e-commerce company, in turn, might tap the platform to find usability issues in its website that are causing cart abandonment. UserTesting also lends itself to a number of other use cases including gauging buyer sentiment toward competitors’ products.

UserTesting claims to have more than 1,500 subscription customers including IBM, Facebook Inc., Starbucks Corp., Verizon Communications Inc. and other big names. The startup will use the new $100 million investment to add more customers internationally with a particular focus on Europe and Asia.

As part of the growth initiative, UserTesting is acquiring Teston AS, a Norwegian startup with a multilingual user feedback gathering platform. “Teston fits nicely within our product portfolio and reinforces our ability to give customers the fastest access to the human perspective,” said UserTesting Chief Executive Officer Andy MacMillan. “They have built a playbook for localization that will enable us to serve our customers who wish to get feedback in European languages and beyond.”

The startup also has plans to build out machine learning feature for its platform to help companies glean more useful information from user feedback.

“New features being researched and in active development include guidance on test creation, optimizing video and audio quality [and] extracting insights from video and audio,” UserTesting Chief Technology Officer Kaj van de Loo told  SiliconANGLE. “To support this, we’ve hired more than half a dozen senior scientists and engineers in this area and now have several squads working on our data and ML platform.”

Image: UserTesting

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