by Hilarie Koplow-McAdamsSep 02, 2022
Over the past decades, the internet has evolved to accommodate an ever-growing set of uses, from shopping to working to education. Despite these developments, the experience of navigating the internet itself has remained mostly static: websites offer a carbon-copy experience to each unique user, social media sites furnish each creator’s profile with the same set of hyperlinks, and ecommerce sites provide identical checkout options for every buyer. As more of the online world becomes hyper-curated through personalized news feeds and powerful algorithms, user-experience (UX) is stuck in the past, with website after website designed with a one-size-fits-all approach.
This is mostly a function of the way that UX has developed over time. A well-designed website anticipates the greatest number of needs for the broadest audience. But the reality is that every person navigates the web in markedly different ways. A truly versatile web experience would allow each user to curate every website they use to anticipate their own unique set of needs.
This is why we’re excited to announce NEA’s Series A investment in PixieBrix, a low-code web extension that lets users customize their experience online. PixieBrix is setting the bar for UX customization, enabling users to personalize and enhance any web application. Through low-code editing software and reusable components called “bricks,” creators can automate, collaborate, and curate any webpage or application online using PixieBrix’s software.
So far, we’ve seen hundreds of uses-cases for the product: people have incorporated custom links to automate their workflow across websites, install native-looking buttons on LinkedIn profiles to showcase their professional skills, and create intuitive overlays on websites ranging from YouTube to Trello to Slack to Jira.
All of these applications are easily accessed and are implemented through PixieBrix's low-code experience. You simply install PixieBrix's free browser extension and follow the prompts to create bricks on any website you choose. Users can also install pre-built bricks from the PixieBrix Marketplace, which they can then customize to their specific needs. PixieBrix also has the ability to connect to other applications such as Google Sheets or Zapier, enabling a user to trigger actions like capturing data from a website and adding it as a new row in a Google Sheet.A user using a custom button (made with PixieBrix) in Trulia to capture information about houses they like and automatically add it to a Google Sheet
We’re especially excited about the possibilities PixieBrix brings to enterprise tech–an area which has lagged behind consumer tech when it comes to providing a great online user experience. Already, enterprise companies are using PixieBrix to customize websites and web apps for their employees, increasing employee productivity and reducing the possibility of errors. One of the most powerful and unique characteristics of PixieBrix is that it is completely agnostic to whichever website or web app a customer chooses to customize. This eliminates the need for customized backend integrations that require significant development resources and constant maintenance. For this reason, we have also seen PixieBrix open up a new world of possibilities for companies to upgrade their in-house developed applications, which are typically built on legacy systems and are expensive to update and maintain. In these scenarios, PixieBrix enables enterprises to adopt modern 3rd-party tools without having to worry about how they will connect these new tools to their legacy in-house applications.One customer is using PixieBrix to help their agents quickly and easily translate and copy text from images stored in an in-house-built application
One of PixieBrix’s early enterprise customers, TaskUs (NASDAQ:TASK), is currently using PixieBrix to help their agents work more productively without the worry of making errors. Some of their specific use cases include:
Content Moderation: Flag inappropriate content to streamline removal and identify bad actors. For example, flagging explicit forum posts to expedite their removal.
Process Gating: Ensure a process is followed to avoid expensive mistakes. For example, if a team member enters a refund, check that the refund reason is valid before allowing it to be processed.
Swivel Chair: Extract data from one web app and auto-fill another web app. For example, pulling customer details from a CRM and auto-filling an order resolution tool.
We are continuously impressed by the versatility of the PixieBrix platform, and are excited to partner with the team as they continue to expand their user base.
PixieBrix’s founders, Todd Schiller and Mike Mirandi, are just the people to solve these persistent issues with user experience. In the time we’ve gotten to know Todd and Mike, we’ve witnessed their depth of vision and knowledge firsthand. Through their experiences building and using analytics tools for consumer and enterprise companies, they have a deep understanding of the problems in UX design. We’re thrilled to support their vision for a highly customizable web experience.
With the funding, PixieBrix plans to launch new tools to add real-time interactive content into any application. The company’s goal is to bring information and actions with you across applications as you work.
If you think that PixieBrix might be useful for your team, or are interested in joining PixieBrix on their mission to bring personalization to any web application, you can check them out here.The information provided in this blog post is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be investment advice, or recommendation, or as an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy an interest in any fund or investment vehicle managed by NEA or any other NEA entity. New Enterprise Associates (NEA) is a registered investment adviser with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). However, nothing in this post should be interpreted to suggest that the SEC has endorsed or approved the contents of this post. NEA has no obligation to update, modify, or amend the contents of this post nor to notify readers in the event that any information, opinion, forecast or estimate changes or subsequently becomes inaccurate or outdated. In addition, certain information contained herein has been obtained from third-party sources and has not been independently verified by NEA. The companies featured in this post are for illustrative purposes only, have been selected in order to provide an example of the types of investments made by NEA that fit the theme of this post and are not representative of all NEA portfolio companies. The company founders or executives or any other individuals featured or quoted in this post are not compensated, directly or indirectly, by NEA but may be founders or executives of portfolio companies NEA has invested in through funds managed by NEA and its affiliates. Any statements made by founders, investors, portfolio companies, or others in the post or on other third-party websites referencing this post are their own, and are not intended to be an endorsement of the investment advisory services offered by NEA.