surveyA startup called Prefinery launched last year to help other startups manage the beta testing process, where they only let a small number of users play with an early version of the product. A new feature now allows Prefinery customers to find out what their beta users think of the product.

Previously, most Prefinery features were built around the invitation process. You could create invitation forms and invite codes, see how many invitees actually used your site, and then export that data into sales applications like Highrise and Mailchimp.

Founder Justin Britten said the new feedback feature came from his own frustration with UserVoice, a service that asks users to respond via a feedback button that sits at the edge of your site. Britten’s problem was that only 0.5 percent of his users would actually click on the feedback button — which is okay if you’ve got a hugely popular site, but not very useful if there are only a few hundred people in your test. The answer, Britten concluded, is to be a little less subtle and more direct.

With the new feedback feature, that directness can take the form of a pop-up window that Prefinery customers can attach to any link or image, or a widget that can be embedded on any page.

And the feedback can be connected to the data that Prefinery has already collected, including the new option that lets you divide testers into different groups, for example one group for friends and family and another group for investors. Combining the two new features, a company could look specifically at how one group responded to a particular question.

Back when it launched, Prefinery said it planned to expand beyond beta testing into other areas of product development. This feedback widget is certainly something that could be useful beyond Prefinery’s current user base.

The company is self-funded and based in Austin.

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