Montreal’s Lightspeed POS has featured prominently on Montreal In Technology in recent years, with multiple acquisitions and IPOs among a slew of other news coming out of this rapidly scaling retail tech giant. This week however brings news of a different kind. Lightspeed is integrating Google Tools into it’s POS sale platform.
As consumer preference towards shopping locally increases, this integration makes it easy for shoppers to find an item they’re looking for, say a red shirt, at a local shop rather than finding it on a large online platform such as Amazon or Rakuten. This announcement comes as new data from Google suggests consumers are interested in shopping local, but many are starting their journey online. Searches for “local” + “business(es)” have grown by more than 80% year over year, including searches like “local businesses near me” and “support local businesses.” Searches for “who has” + “in stock” have grown by more than 8,000% year over year, including searches like “who has gym equipment in stock.”
Enabling access to these Google’s digital tools directly within the Lightspeed platform is intended to level the playing field for independent merchants. The company plans for the integration to help create a genuine opportunity for local retailers to scale their businesses. “We know that so much of business today starts with a Google search,” said Lightspeed CEO Dax Dasilva, “By combining forces, Lightspeed and Google are eliminating the pain points that prevent SMBs from effectively promoting their products online to the communities who prefer to shop local, providing them a springboard to simplify and scale their businesses as they prepare for the welcomed return of in-store shopping.”
Best of all, the integration between Lightspeed and Google will allow independent retailers to manage a number of Google tools directly in their Lightspeed commerce platform at no additional cost. The three tools being built in are: Google Local Inventory Ads (available now), Google Smart Shopping Campaigns (coming soon), and Google My Business (available now).
“Small and medium sized businesses have been hit the hardest during the pandemic, but globally we’ve seen a rallying cry to support them,” says Sabrina Geremia, VP & Country Director, Google Canada. “Customers are shopping both online and in-store and expect a seamless shopping experience between both. As we look towards recovery, this integration with Lightspeed will provide a scalable solution for Lightspeed merchants of all sizes looking to reach customers in this new omnichannel reality.”
The new Google integration includes:
● Google Local Inventory Ads: Retailers can reach local customers with local inventory ads, from directly within the platform. These ads help nearby shoppers know what they have in stock, driving more visits to their physical shop.
● Google Smart Shopping Campaigns: Today’s consumers are shopping across platforms and devices, online and offline, seamlessly. With Smart Shopping campaigns, products are eligible to show up across all of Google’s properties and reach users wherever, and whenever, they’re searching or consuming content.
● Google My Business: Merchants can get and manage a professional Google My Business listing straight from Lightspeed’s commerce platform. Retailers can keep
customers up to date with their latest information, whether it’s store hours or COVID-19 safety protocols in place.