Needle Inc. closed a $10.5 million funding round, co-led by Shasta Ventures and Rembrandt Venture Partners, the company said in a statement.

Needle provides e-commerce companies with fans and product experts who can help online shoppers with questions through online chat, video or voice, the company said in a statement. Needle will use this latest round of funding to grow its pool of brand experts and expand its social selling platform.

"Companies that continue to use antiquated text-based chat to provide customer experience are going to fall far behind in the e-commerce world,” Morgan Lynch, the company's founder and CEO, said in a statement.

“Today’s buyer expects authenticity and expertise, and passing them off to a person in a contact center who has no genuine experience with the company’s products and is using canned answers is the antithesis of that. Shasta and Rembrandt recognize the disruptive role Needle is playing in the e-commerce world and we’re looking forward to working with them as we fix real-time shopping interactions online and disrupt the $100 billion global contact center space.”

The e-commerce industry has an average Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 47 percent, but Needle's clients have NPS scores 72 percent and above, the company said in a statement.