2,800 crowdsourcing and crowdfunding sites
Crowdtilt announced today that it has rebranded Crowdhoster to CrowdtiltOpen, and opened the white label solution for public use.
CrowdtiltOpen is an open source tool that allows anyone to create a crowdfunding page for a product or cause. The free software has been around in private beta since last August and has helped to fund a number of prominent campaigns, including a $2 million raise for the meal replacement drink Soylent. CrowdtiltOpen offers a number of features to users, including: custom payment tiers, a commenting section, social media and Google Analytics integration, add-ons like Facebook Ads and Optimizely, a unique URL, and pther customization tools, among other selling points.
The key for CrowdtiltOpen's success is to strike a balance between being sophisticated enough to attract those with copious coding experience, while staying simple enough to appeal to the laymen. Yours truly, much closer to the 'layman' part of the spectrum, was able to create the sample campaign on the right within a matter of minutes. The layout is nothing breathtaking, to be sure, but creating such a page is not something I could have easily done before today, and that in itself is a significant move forward for the industry.
It will also be interesting to see how CrowdtiltOpen will affect the white label crowdfunding software space. Most companies that charge clients to build crowdfunding platforms focus on building entire platforms, not individual campaigns, so it should not hurt the likes of Launcht and CrowdFundMagic.
There are WordPress plugins like IgnitionDeck, however, that allow buyers to create individual campaign pages. IgnitionDeck is probably priced low enough ($79 for the basic package, $349 for the enterprise solution) to still make sense for a lot of users; plus, it offers a plethora of its own unique features. Other, less sophisticated plugins, though, may suffer in the face of increased competition.
Crowdtilt itself is a crowdfunding platform that has funded everything from political campaigns and the Jamaican Olympic bobsled team, to birthday presents. The company is highly tech-savvy when compared to its peers. It has a mobile app, which is still far from common in the crowdfunding industry, allows features like 'tilting' and split payments, and has clearly invested a lot of time in improving Crowdhoster since last summer.
Under the direction of its CEO James Beshara, Crowdtilt has been able to carve out a spot among the 'general' crowdfunding giants: the likes of Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and Rockethub. That’s quite a feat, considering most new platforms today pick a niche to avoid going against the established behemoths.
With an expanding roster of features and offerings, as well as a recent $23 million cash infusion in its war chest, Crowdtilt seems poised to give its more established competitors a run for their money.