If you run an e-commerce business, Facebook can be a big opportunity for making sales and finding new customers — in fact, the company just announced new ad units for this very purpose. But if you need a little more hand-holding, there’s a startup called Funnely that might help.
Funnely was created by a team based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and that’s where the startup’s developers are still based — but other team members have relocated to Mountain View, Calif., where they’re part of the most recent class at incubator 500 Startups.
As explained to me by Lucila Campos and Susana Cipriota — two of Funnely’s four founders — the product is built for e-commerce businesses, particularly small ones that don’t have the time and/or expertise to create sophisticated Facebook ad campaigns. The pair said that distinguishes them from other social ad platforms like Nanigans, which are better-suited to large advertisers.
Funnely plugs into shopping platforms like Shopify and pulls out behavioral data about customers, which it then uses to both create and target Facebook ads. Campos said the product “makes sure the whole funnel is healthy,” which means advertising to potential new customers and using retargeting to convince existing customers to make a purchase.
The company launched its public beta last week, but it says it’s already managing $150,000 in ad spend and delivering 17x ROI and 15 percent growth with early advertisers.
For example, during its private beta period, Funnely worked with wine company Invino, targeting previous visitors with ads based on their interests (like red wine ads for people who visited red wine pages) while also finding Facebook users who looked like they could turn into lucrative wine buyers. Invino ran test campaigns of $600 per week, and they brought in $9,700 in revenue, or a 16x return on investment.
The process is mostly automated for advertisers, but Campos noted that the degree of automation varies depending on where someone is in the sales funnel: “The lower funnel is the most automated,” she said, while Funnely also taps into a crowdsourced network of ad targeting and creative.
Funnely is currently limited to Facebook advertising, but Campos said she definitely intends to expand to other ad platforms. She’ll stay focused on social media, however, because, “We are focused on the content … and the content is the most important part of social media ads.”
The company has raised $237,000 in funding from 500 Startups, MITS Fund, NXTP Labs, and undisclosed angel investors.