How Lightspeed helps independent retailers and restaurants achieve entrepreneurial success with Salesforce

From eating out in a restaurant to buying a new article of clothing in a store, consumers expect a seamless point-of-sale experience both in the physical and digital world. But for the independent retailers and restaurants that bring character and unique shopping and dining opportunities to local neighbourhoods, investing in omnichannel solutions has traditionally meant a significant financial commitment.

Montreal-based company Lightspeed is on a global mission to level the playing field for independent businesses. Since 2005, Lightspeed brings innovative technologies to 50,000-plus retailers and restaurateurs around the world. Spearheading initiatives like mobile checkout, self-order menu and omnichannel, the SAAS company equips its customers with a comprehensive cloud-based platform. Most recently, the company launched Lightspeed Analytics, an intuitive tool that allows independent retailers access to the kind of data and reporting previously only available to big box stores.

“Retail is evolving, and we help our customers be part of that evolution regardless of their size,” said Bradley Grill, Lightspeed’s Director of PR. “Our solutions help retailers and restaurateurs make smarter decisions, streamline customer interactions, and boost their revenue. Customers that use our cloud-based POS software typically see a 20% increase in sales in their first year on our platform.”

A flexible platform encourages stronger growth.

With success figures like these, it’s not surprising that Lightspeed has experienced exceptional growth over the past 13 years. But growth can bring complexity, especially when adding new products and territories. “We needed to simplify our internal processes so that we could focus on giving our customers the best experience possible,” explained Lory Ajamian, Director of Performance at Lightspeed.

Although Lightspeed initially deployed Salesforce for its CRM and real-time reporting capabilities, it now also plays a critical role in customer billing. “Our customers often want customized payment schedules, which we can accommodate more easily with Salesforce,” said Kareem Afara, Lead Salesforce Developer for the company. “It gives us the agility and flexibility we need to grow our business and respond to individual customer needs.”

It gives us the agility and flexibility we need to grow our business and respond to individual customer needs.”

Kareem Afara, Lead Salesforce Developer, Lightspeed

Smarter processes increase efficiency and enrich the customer experience.

To help retailers and restaurateurs get the most out of their commerce solutions, Lightspeed uses Sales Cloud to accelerate and enrich the customer journey – from issuing quotes and maximizing adoption to identifying new opportunities. For example, quotes can now be created in 5 - 20 seconds instead of minutes. We've grown our sales team over 6x with very little need to grow our administrative teams.

“With Sales Cloud, we can engage with customers more efficiently and have more relevant conversations,” said Ajamian. “We have created quick-view profiles for each customer, which show current products, renewal dates, and outstanding issues or invoices.”

To support its custom and complex billing processes, Lightspeed has built a cloud-based engine in that integrates with Sales Cloud. It has also integrated the solution with Avalara to ensure customer invoices reflect the different tax rules in different countries and states. “Integration is so easy with Salesforce, which means data can be synced across multiple platforms in real-time,” added Afara.

Real-time dashboards unlock sales insights.

The data captured in Salesforce is displayed in user-friendly dashboards that help Lightspeed’s leadership team keep track of progress and performance. “As a fast-growing company, real-time and historical insights are essential,” explained Ajamian. “With Salesforce, we can see how our numbers stack up against our objectives. Thanks to the Salesforce Mobile App, the dashboards can all be viewed on the go to make sure we never miss a thing.”

As Lightspeed continues to expand its business with more territories, products, and team members, tracking the source of new leads will be increasingly important. “With Sales Cloud, we can drill down into our performance by region, by product, even by a sales rep. This helps us identify where we need to focus our resources or to offer more staff coaching if needed,” said Ajamian.

A Trailblazer for success in the retail sector.

Lightspeed doesn't just want to grow its own business; it wants to help its customer achieve similar results. “We are very committed to customer satisfaction and success, and will only sell our POS software to businesses that we know will benefit,” said Grill. “We constantly ask our customers to provide feedback on our performance and products.”

With such a strong customer success ethos, it’s not surprising that Lightspeed boasts one of the highest Net Promoter Scores for the industry. “With Salesforce, we can help our teams work smarter and enable our business grow faster, ultimately aiding our customers and the local high streets to thrive.”

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