Case Study: Constructor.io

When Constructor.io hired its first employee CEO Eli Finkelshteyn knew they would need help with the financial side of the business. Now, with a thriving team of 7 engineers working to revolutionize search technology, they’re glad they took advantage of the peace of mind and attention to detail that SimpleKeep offered, while saving them thousands of dollars on their taxes.

Building a Business

Constructor.io is a business born from a recurring problem. Founders Eli and Dan saw that 70% of websites on the internet have search somewhere on their site, each one needing to build the functionality to power that search.

Even larger corporations, like Amazon, have their own search teams to work on essentially the same problems as their competitors; improving relevance, ranking, and spell-correction in their search. This model of everyone “rebuilding the wheel,” or in this case, the same algorithm, leads to not only time lost engineering, and hefty engineering expenses. It also results in subpar algorithms due to lack of data and not enough good search engineers to go around.

Having previously worked on search at Shutterstock, Dan and Eli decided to take things a step further, and began creating the search company they had wished for. When talking about his team, Eli says,“These are very large and complicated problems that we’re really passionate about, and that we find very interesting. There’s always room to improve the search experience. We build and constantly improve our search, autosuggest, spell correction, relevance, and machine learning re-ranking algorithms, then companies provide us their data sets and we use our algorithms to provide them better search results than they can get from building search themselves.”

Once they had built a successful client base, Constuctor.io began to grow, and as it did the worry about finances did as well. With no background in accounting or taxes, the company decided to jump onboard with SimpleKeep to get peace of mind, and to ensure their business was doing everything by the books.

“Honestly, bringing SimpleKeep onboard has made us worry so much less, and it has been a huge lifesaver. Because, with accounting stuff, no matter how hard you try, if don’t know the rules then bad things can happen. And the team at SimpleKeep know the rules really, really well.”

Partnering for Success

For Constructor.io, their primary purpose has always been helping people. Whether that means improving conversion rates, stylistically inserting in-category searches, or displaying meta information — it all comes down to people. Unfortunately, as with many businesses, bookkeeping can all too easily devour time that would otherwise be been spent working with clients.

Eli says that if he had to do it all to over again, the first investment would have been to bring SimpleKeep onboard. “If you do [taxes] wrong, and the IRS investigates you…you don’t have time to deal with that – you can spend the small investment upfront, now, and get peace of mind and not worry about that. Or you can risk your business, every single day.” Finances can get sticky and without the right help, they can actually kill your business.

“Even before I worked with SimpleKeep I would hear them on calls with some of their customers and would see what they were doing. They work overtime, and actually enjoy it, just to save their customers money. As soon as we could afford them, there was no doubt in our minds.”

 

Financial Peace-of-Mind Brings New Ideas and a Vivid Work Culture

As a company built by passionate people, Constructor.io knows how important it is to work with passionate teams; teams like SimpleKeep, who love what they do — in this case, finances.

One of Eli’s favorite aspects of SimpleKeep is how versatile the service is. From saving Constructor.io money on taxes, to handling the laws around employee management, to saving thousands of dollars on tax expense write-offs, the expertise has been invaluable. Eli remembers one of the first write-off’s SimpleKeep pointed out being his laptop, which he hadn’t considered eligible, which ended up saving him $1500.

“We would also get letters from the government, saying we forgot to pay something, and all three times it was a clerical error on the government’s side,” remembers Eli. “I would have never known how to deal with that, I would have just paid it. And SimpleKeep just stepped in and took care of it like, ‘No problem, we’ve dealt with this before.’ And the problem went away.”

Eli says Constructor is the type of company that he always wanted to work at. The problems are really interesting, the people are incredibly passionate, and everyone works together towards a singular goal of improving the search experience. Eli’s day-to-day roles may vary from managing, to coding, to even taking the trash out (if that’s what helps the team the most), but with such a passionate staff, the role changes are something he’s happy to take on.

Constructor.io is currently working on a full search service, as a response to customer requests, and they’re excited to be making their customers so happy, with their newest product.

Eli’s advice for small businesses, who are worrying about their accounting and bookkeeping? Don’t wait to bring in financial help.

“If I could do everything over again, financial help from SimpleKeep is probably the first thing that I would get.”

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