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How to Build a Customer Feedback Engine with Enquire CEO Matt Bahr

Adrian Alfieri

Adrian Alfieri

Customer feedback is a hugely underrated and vital way to improve your business, yet many brands don't take advantage of that.

Matt Bahr, the co-founder of EnquireLabs, is out to change that, so he started Enquire, a post-purchase survey tool that collects feedback for merchants on Shopify.

We sat down with Matt to learn about:

  • What led him to initially launch EnquireLabs
  • What factors set Enquire apart from its competitors
  • How he knew it was time to fundraise for his growing startup


Enquire's Secret Sauce

Matt stumbled into EnquireLabs.

He was advising Caraa Sport, a handbag company in New York City. Caraa was struggling with customer attribution, so Matt suggested they create a post-purchase survey to get feedback.

Sadly, Matt realized the only way to conduct the survey was by using an app to drop a Google Form embed script on the order confirmation page.

Collecting the feedback was helpful, but Matt was frustrated that you couldn't easily sync any of that data with other tools. He realized he had to build a tool to sync order data and survey results.

Since launching in 2018, Enquire has proliferated. Here are some of the company's growth highlights:

  • They've worked with 2,000+ companies, from services and B2B technologies to eCom brands.
  • Over 60% of Enquire's clients belong to the company's highest subscription tier.
  • They've done ~20 million surveys a month for brands like Allbirds and FIGS, giving Enquire a strong understanding of their core customer.


Enquire's Patented Technologies

Matt and his team are constantly evolving its product features, making it easier for Shopify merchants and apps to collect information and move data around.

Enquire's core technologies are its Question Engine and Question Stream™. The engine helps clients write questions unique to their products, and the stream is a flow of information determining when questions are shown and to whom.

Enquire stands out from its competitors in three distinct ways: 

1. Gaining Insights

Competitors tend to focus on traditional research models that require weeks of data collection and manual synthesis, and usually inform valuable decisions that impact the next cohort of customers months or years later. 

Enquire operationalizes consumer insights to fill the gap left by those products when a consumer’s feedback could be acted on instantly, like changing what personalization path they’re sent on.

2. Working Together

Question Engine and Question Stream work together to learn from the behavior of a given customer so that they can serve up better questions throughout the consumer’s lifetime journey.

3. Actionable Information

With Question Bank, Enquire can show clients more than 100 additional questions to ask shoppers, which helps merchants gain needful insights beyond attribution.

"Once our brands start to collect this survey feedback, they say, 'Oh sh*t, I could've solved all these problems if I'd asked!'"


Improving Core Data Capabilities

As Enquire gets more experience working with large volumes of data across different industries, they have the potential to build valuable IP for the customers they serve.

Additionally, because Enquire is a Shopify app, they're built to follow Shopify's best practices. As they develop more features and add new customers, they're looking to take on enterprise business.

At the same time, Matt knows that there is always room for improvement.

First, Matt wants to simplify where clients can collect data and in what form they receive it. Creating an open API will help his team accomplish this.

Second, Enquire is getting SOC 2 Compliant, which will enable them to be up-to-date with many privacy initiatives.

And finally, Matt wants to offer advanced analytics for customers in the future, but he's conscious about building products that people don't need.

"We take our own medicine. We'll only build features based on extensive user research." 


How to Know When You Should Raise

Matt has over a decade of experience in the eCom space, specifically in the Shopify network. 

Once Enquire began receiving requests to work with companies that use other platforms outside of Shopify, he knew that Enquire needed more resources to meet new client needs. 

So, he went out to fundraise. The fresh capital will help Enquire:

  • Build a team to manage the product's customer-facing content 
  • Develop software that connects to other apps and platforms 
  • Hire experts to keep up Enquire's steady flow of business as it scales

"When thinking about whether we should fundraise, the question became: 'is somebody else going to do this?' The answer was yes, so it had to be us."


Pulling Back the Curtain

Matt and his team had several term sheets on the table a week into fundraising. 

Ultimately, Enquire raised $4.5 million, led by True Ventures, FIDI Ventures, Silicon Valley Ventures, V1.VC, and angel investors like Chubbies and Casey Armstrong.

In reflecting on a speedy fundraising process, Matt highlights that this is just the beginning for Enquire. A few things that stand out to him: 

  • First, how validating it is to be backed by investors that understand the company's product and vision.
  • Second, how exciting it is to have investors and partners who will help Enquire expand outside the eCom space.

"We fundraised because there's an opportunity to change the consumer-brand data relationship beyond eCom, and that's our opportunity to seize."

Adrian Alfieri

Adrian Alfieri

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Y Combinator
Liquid IV
Bev
Bev
Muddy Bites
MatchaBar
Remedy Organics
Facetheory
Krave Beauty
Stryx
One Blade
Doe Lashes
Barukas
Red Bay Coffee
Gooey.
Siete Foods
Sunsoil
Ugmonk.
Munkpack
Simulate
Everyday Dose
Backbone
ZBiotics
Semaine Health
Somos
Magic Mind
Uprising
Zox
Huron
XCJ
BelliWelli
Culture Pop
Bubs Naturals
Summer Water
Strong Coffee
Ritual Zero Proof
Wellnesse
Heights
Taika
Immi
Fly By Jing
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