Editor\u2019s note:\u00a0Traction Watch\u00a0is a new column focused obsessively on growth, and is a companion to the\u00a0DEMO Traction\u00a0conference series, which brings together high-growth startups with high-potential customers. The next DEMO Traction will take place in Boston on September 16, 2015. Growth companies can\u00a0apply to present, or those similarly obsessed can\u00a0register here\u00a0to attend.\u00a0\nThis is the fourth in a series of posts profiling the Spring 2015 Demo Traction Champions. Talkdesk was named a Traction Watch: Smart Data Champion. Read more about the winners in\u00a0\u201cTraction Watch: Meet The Spring 2015 DEMO Traction Champions.\u201d\n\nBefore the Web took off, customers actually called companies for service. You needed to fly from one coast to another? You called United and spent 20 minutes on the phone hearing about the various flight options, booking the one that suited you best, and giving the agent your credit card information.\nBy 2005, customer service had largely moved online. Consumers became used to clicking to buy a product or service without talking to anyone on the phone.\nToday, that\u2019s all changing again, said Gadi Shamia, COO of Talkdesk, which just raised $15 million in a Series A round from Storm Ventures. Talkdesk was one of two Spring 2015 DEMO Traction champions in the Smart Data category. Shamia, speaking at the DEMO Traction conference in San Francisco, said that customer service now is \u201cmobile and real-time.\u201d\n\n\n \n\n\nIf you want food, you click a button in an app and have it delivered. Need a ride? Fire up Uber, tap a button, and a car is on its way.\n\u201cPeople are used to clicking a button to get products and services delivered right away, and they want to get customer service the same way, in real-time,\u201d Shamia says. \u201cIf the food you received from DoorDash is cold, you\u2019re not going to wait for someone to reply to your email. You want an answer now.\u201d\nThe increased expectancy of immediate customer service has fueled a $20-billion annual call-center software marketplace, Shamia notes. But here\u2019s the problem. In many cases, those call centers are served by phone systems created in the 1980s and 90s, when \u201ccall centers were cost centers, not business opportunities,\u201d Shamia says.\nAnd so, in 2011, Talkdesk was born. The concept: Enable businesses to \u201ccreate a call center in five minutes\u201d using only a Web browser; no hardware or software installations required. Plus, Talkdesk \u201cintegrates with everything in your company,\u201d Shamia says, including Zendesk, Shopify, Bigcommerce, SugarCRM, Salesforce.com\u2019s Desk, LiveChat, Google Contacts, and others.\nAll the information from the integrated systems flows into a customer \u2018news feed.\u2019 \u201cWhen a customer calls, you see information about them in your browser,\u201d Shamia explains. For example, you can see if the customer has an open ticket ticket from Zendesk or recently made a purchase through Shopify, giving the call center agent a more holistic, real-time view of that customer.\n\nTalkdesk has an \u201cIFTT-like interface,\u201d Shamia says, meaning you can create rules so that if one event happens, it triggers another. If a call session ends with an escalation, for instance, Talkdesk would automatically create a ticket in Zendesk, mark it as high priority, and send it to the escalation queue.\nTalkdesk\u2019s other strength is its monitoring and reporting, enabling administrators and supervisors to monitor live calls and receive real-time and historical analytics.\nTalkdesk began in Portugal, cofounded by Tiago Paiva and Cristina Fonseca, VentureBeat reports. They built the first version using Twilio\u2019s cloud-based API, which enables developers to build \u201cintelligent and complex communications systems."\nThe Talkdesk team presented their technology at Twilio\u2019s conference in 2011, which led to $450,000 in seed funding from 500 Startups and a variety of angel investors, says VentureBeat. In September 2014, Talkdesk received 3.15 million dollars\u00a0in funding and said it was on track to make $4 million in revenue that year and had more than 1,000 customers and 25 employees. And it just raised another $15 million, as mentioned above.\n\nEven so, some believe the cloud-based call center market is maturing and some industry shakeout is likely.\nDMG Consulting LLC predicts the cloud-based contact center market will grow by 20 percent in 2015 before slightly dipping to 18 percent in 2016 and 2017 and 16 percent in 2018.\n\u201cAlthough the percentages are expected to decrease, the number of new contact center infrastructure seats is expected to grow every year during this time period,\u201d according to DMG. \u201cUsers should be aware that market consolidation is likely and will occur over the next several years, as there are too many vendors competing to meet the current market demand.\u201d\nHowever, Talkdesk's growth will come more from taking existing marketshare. And it's off to a great start. Talkdesk is growing \u201cexponentially,\u201d Shamia says, with an expanding client roster featuring the likes of Fitbit, Dropbox, The Weather Channel, and Anki.