Lightspeed Releases Report Showing Importance of Being Online for Retailers

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Lightspeed Commerce has launched its innovative new flagship omnichannel retail platform, Lightspeed Retail, a one-stop commerce platform for merchants around the world to simplify, scale and create ‘exceptional’ customer experiences.

The company says the groundbreaking new retail commerce platform unites advanced POS, payments, and ecommerce solutions into one cohesive and powerful solution. 

JP Chauvet

“The core of Lightspeed’s vision for retailers is a seamless commerce platform that tackles the key challenges modern merchants face not only today but also five years from today,” said Lightspeed CEO, JP Chauvet in a statement. 

“The new Lightspeed Retail is the culmination of strategically combining Lightspeed’s leading technology and talented teams with those of our acquisitions, creating the ultimate product for the modern retailer. Not only are we bringing to market the best of ecommerce, payments, and POS so busy merchants can do it all from one platform, but this launch lays the groundwork for everything that is coming next, from fully-integrated supplier solutions to even more powerful consumer and buying data for our merchants.”

The company has also released its State of Retail 2022: Omnichannel is Do or Die, which shares data collected this year from over 7,200 global retail owners, managers, operators, and customers to see how they’re responding and reacting to a shifting retail landscape.

Key findings include: 

  • Omnichannel merchants are outpacing their peers. An average of 48 per cent of global omnichannel merchants reported that revenue was higher or significantly higher year-over-year, compared to just brick and mortar retail merchants (37 per cent) and just ecommerce merchants (31 per cent);
  • 68 per cent of retailers said technology adoption has had a positive impact on their business over the last two years; and
  • In 2022, 66 per cent of global merchants reported they will invest to improve their inventory and supply processes to enable ecommerce growth, and 64 per cent will specifically invest in more technology for ecommerce growth.

Ana Wight, General Manager of Retail for Lightspeed, said the key finding is that omnichannel is do or die.

Ana Wight

“And what we mean by that our retailers need us to be able to have a platform and a product that works in the digital world where they want to be online or in the physical world with a brick and mortar store and I think through that report you can see that the way consumers want to shop, the way they want to spend, the growth of merchants that have embraced that omnichannel vision or way of working, and what we see are the trends that will continue to push us in that direction of meeting consumers where they are.”

Amber van Moessner, Head of Product and Industry Communications for Lightspeed, who worked on the report, said the omnichannel benefits are clear from the data. 

“We’re moving into a new era where folks have adopted certain behaviours over the last two years where maybe those who weren’t really shopping online before maybe got started when retailers were closed,” she said. “And now that they’re eager to come back into stores, they still have this habit, the convenience of online shopping and click and collect. We’re really encouraging our merchants and retailers in general to think about how to diversify, where to meet their consumers, because consumers want that versatility and that flexibility, and the merchants who can really meet that demand are going to be the ones that succeed.”

Wight said the new platform is a culmination of years of Lightspeed innovation and the company’s recent acquisitions of Vend and Ecwid in the point of sale and ecommerce space. 

“What we are taking to market is a platform that provides retailers with really comprehensive back office tools to optimize and control their businesses,” said Wight, adding that it will enable merchants to grow and scale their business. 

“What we’re really excited about is the product being both really intuitive and beautiful and easy to use and learn which is really important for staff but at the same time being a very powerful, reliable platform for retailers to run their business.

“We’ve truly built a product for every retailer, whether they’re starting out, scaling, or expanding globally, with tightly-integrated technology all in one tool. The value of this fully integrated solution will only expand as we continue to bring industry-leading innovation to our customers, suppliers and their consumers.”

The new Lightspeed Retail is available on all platforms, web, iOS, and Android and is now available in North America, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, the UK, and South Africa.

The company said key Lightspeed Retail features include:

  • It’s never been easier to run a business online or in person. Transform any website (WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, etc.) into an ecommerce engine;
  • The new Lightspeed Retail is incredibly intuitive and easy to use. Brick-and-mortar stores can move online in just a few hours with seamless self-serve tools;
  • Reach customers where they are, in-store and online. Sell and advertise products where customers spend their time, directly on key social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok where Lightspeed has core partnerships, as well as other leading marketplaces like Google, Amazon, and eBay. Flexibility to sell whatever you want, wherever you want with direct, time-saving integration from a single viewpoint for orders and inventory;
  • Unmatched sophisticated retail technology. Flexible, simple, workflows allow retailers to customize their POS and back office to their specific needs. Product serialization, as well as external partner and supplier integrations provide cutting-edge tools to merchants scaling their business. Retailers can track performance at their fingertips with the new Lightspeed Retail app and use any smart mobile device to manage inventory;
  • Manage a retail business and back-office seamlessly with integrated payments, inventory, and advanced reporting. One login, one provider for ecommerce, POS, and payments. Easily customize reports to fit a retailer’s personal business needs. Seamlessly manage inventory across online and physical stores to ensure you have everything shoppers need; and 
  • Scale with a single solution. Turn an ecom shop into an empire or take a brick-and-mortar business online. Lightspeed Retail has all the tools you need with a flexible and modern comprehensive platform for online and in-person operations.

Founded in Montréal in 2005, Lightspeed is dual-listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: LSPD) and Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: LSPD). With teams across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, the company serves retail, hospitality and golf businesses in over 100 countries.

Lightspeed’s retail report said sales growth is on the rise with omnichannel leading the pack:

  • In the United States and Canada nearly half of the retailers reported revenue being higher in 2021 than in 2020, with 12 per cent in the US and six per cent in Canada saying it was significantly higher;
  • When it comes to year-over-year growth in omnichannel sales (merchants with an online and brick and mortar presence), 61 per cent of omni retailers in the US, 58 per cent in the UK, and 56 per cent in Canada reported higher sales growth with a whopping 21 per cent of omnichannel merchants in the US reporting “significantly higher” revenue —far more than the overall average;
  • In the US, this growth is happening online and in-store: 61 per cent of omnichannel merchants, 47 per cent of eCom merchants, and 41 per cent of Brick & Mortar merchants saw higher year-over year sales growth;
  • eCommerce revenue surged for nearly half of online-only retailers in the US (47 per cent) and the Netherlands (45 per cent);
  • Brick & Mortar thrived in North America: Canadian (42 per cent) and US (41 per cent) stores saw the most growth;
  • An average of 39 per cent of consumer survey respondents reported they’ll shop mostly in-store over the next six months compared to just 23 per cent for eCommerce. This indicates growing recovery to, but not quite matching yet, pre-pandemic levels; as 50 per cent of customers shopped in-store in 2019;
  • About 30 per cent of consumer survey respondents said they plan to shop less overall in 2022 versus only 10 per cent who plan to shop more;
  • 20 per cent of merchant survey respondents reported hiring and staff retention as their biggest challenge; and 
  • 32 per cent of survey respondents reported operating their business with less staff than they required in response to their retention challenges. 

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