It may be a fad, but it’s attracting investor capital. Making ordinary commercial websites look like online games is called “gamification.” Badgeville has raised $12,000,000 to become a leader in adding game-like features to non-game applications. This is a second round of funding following $3,000,000 the company raised last year.
Badgeville plans to grow from 30 employees presently to 50 later this year. The new capital is expected to make the Menlo Park, California, company excel past its competitors and become the top gamification business. Helping to make that happen are additions to the corporate board of directors of experienced entrepreneurs from a couple of venture capital firms.
Badgeville has products called Dynamic Game Engine and Widget Studio that allow companies to make their websites more interactive. The engagement tends to build customer loyalty in measurable ways. For example, websites using Badgeville products permit users to obtain social rewards and achievements. The company has recently launched version 2.0 of its platform and claims that its products enhance retention of website users by 30 percent.
Badgeville has more than 75 customers in the e-commerce, entertainment, education, fitness, and service industries. After it debut in the fall of 2010, the company has reported 40 percent quarterly sales growth in 2011.
The preferred manner of providing its product is software-as-a service cloud delivery. This is consistent with the Badgeville strategy of having the most flexible platform that’s easiest to implement.
Market research company, Gartner, expects that more than 70 percent of the top 2,000 companies worldwide will have some application gamified by 2014.