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Bigcommerce raises $40M to help small businesses 'sell more' online

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Bigcommerce has raised big bucks to help physical retailers keep up in an increasingly digital world.

The company helps small business owners create professional stores online. E-commerce is on the rise — Forrester recently said that online retail in the US is growing at a rapid rate, “outpacing sales growth in traditional stores and stealing market share from them.” Brick-and-mortar retailers need to establish an online presence if they want to stay afloat, but many don’t have the financial or technical resources to do this on their own, which is where Bigcommerce steps in.

“Small businesses are the heart and soul of the economy and are something I’ve always been passionate about helping,” founder and CEO Mitch Harper told VentureBeat. “When we started Bigcommerce off the back of a credit card, we aimed to build a product that would empower them to sell online. We wanted to build a scalable, powerful e-commerce platform for every business in the world.”

Bigcommerce does more than assist with website creation. Its suite of tools include design, search engine optimization, data analytics, marketing, reporting, apps and integrations, security, product configuration, inventory management, and payment processing. Owners can customize their stores and incorporate features like product reviews, coupons, and mobile compatibility.

Clients also receive individual attention from Bigcommerce’s “Success Squad,” a group of e-commerce “expert coaches” who spend one-on-one time with clients to help them launch and promote their stores and grow sales. The business is runs on a subscription model, with plans ranging from $24.95 to $299.95 a month, and Bigcommerce takes no commission or transaction fees.

Owners of 36,228 stores now use Bigcommerce. The company has processed over $2 billion in transactions and has handled 17 million orders since it launched four years ago. It works across 25 industries in 65 countries. Harper said the company has seen its business double by 1,400% each year.

The company competes with big players like Amazon, eBay, and GoDaddy, as well as Shopify, Storenvy, Tictail and Magento. With this third round of funding, Bigcommerce plans to enter new vertical and geographic markets, invest in brand awareness and customer acquisition, and add new features and intgrations.

Revolution Growth, an investment firm founded in 2011 by former AOL execs Steve Case, Ted Leonsis, and Donn Davis, led the investment. Its $450 fund invests in “speed-ups, making $$25-$50 million investments to help companies achieve mainstream adoption or leadership in the market. It focuses on the Eastern part of the U.S.

Bigcommerce is based in Australia, with sales and marketing teams in Austin, Texas. It has 260 employees and has raised $75 million to date. General Catalyst and Floodgate participated in the second round in September 2012.