Next-gen cloud networking solution combines SD-WAN and Wi-Fi to help Australia’s leading lighting retailer reimagine the in-store shopping experience
Riverbed Technology has announced that Beacon Lighting, Australia’s leading lighting retailer, is using its next-gen cloud networking solution incorporating SD-WAN and Wi-Fi to power connected smart home lighting experiences in-store, enhancing the digital and buying experience for customers at its 109 retail stores. Following a design and deployment by partner OPIA Technology, Riverbed cloud networking solutions have also helped the retailer improve business agility and network reliability, supporting the retailer’s ongoing global expansion and impending launch of its smart lighting range due out this year.
Beacon Lighting has undergone a significant transformation in the last few years to meet the rapidly changing demands of its customers to make online shopping more convenient, as well as offer a customised in-store digital shopping experience. Beacon Lighting is evolving its own product offering, as demand for smart lighting and home automation solutions has grown.
Rapid deployment of new apps and digital services across remote retail locations and heightened requirements for network availability were paramount to deliver enhanced digital experiences for its customers.
In order to achieve this, Beacon Lighting deployed a cloud networking solution from Riverbed that brings together Riverbed SteelConnect for SD-WAN and Riverbed Xirrus for Wi-Fi. Deployed and managed together from a single console, they enable a next-generation IT infrastructure that is helping the retailer do the following:
- Ensure uptime for enhanced point-of-sale and IoT services. Redundancy has allowed stores to supplement sometimes problematic fixed-line connections with seamless connection on the fly to backups of ADSL or multiple 4G services. This is particularly critical for Beacon Lighting’s VoIP services, which were recently upgraded ahead of Australia’s digitisation of its national phone networks, but it has also enabled the launch of connected smart home automation experiences in-store, which demonstrate products like Google Home and Amazon Alexa.
- Deliver reliable in-store Wi-Fi and mobile services for employees and customers. Beacon Lighting plans to roll out tablets to stores early next year, enabling POS transactions over Wi-Fi and enhancements to in-store consulting services, providing staff with easy access to customer data to inform future recommendations.
- Rapidly deploy new apps and digital services to stores. Beacon Lighting’s need for business agility was supported by the use of SteelConnect when employees had to relocate one of its stores to a new facility overnight. SteelConnect enabled Beacon Lighting to move existing infrastructure and set up the store quickly and remotely, ahead of the reopening at 9am, using a simple dashboard to provision the new network. Additionally, Beacon Lighting can now install and test all IT equipment and applications over 4G prior to any fixed line services being installed, and well before a new store opening. Seven of its stores are currently running on 4G alone due to fixed line services being unavailable.
- Establish a foundation for future IT innovation and in-store digital experiences. Beacon Lighting plans to roll out in-store touchscreens next year, which will provide the deep catalogue visibility customers have access to when searching for products online; as well as introduce geo-tagging to facilitate more dynamic marketing activities.
Implementation of the Riverbed cloud networking solution was completed across all of its 118 total sites nationwide within four weeks. This includes retail stores, several commercial sites and offices, and a data centre.
“Beacon Lighting has had to completely rethink the digital experience for our customers and staff. Riverbed’s cloud networking solution with its innovative SD-WAN and Wi-Fi offerings gives us the foundation to deliver it – and the transition has been seamless,” said Mick Tan, Beacon Lighting CIO. “We’ve significantly improved business continuity and security across stores and connected IoT devices as part of our connected store strategy. Most importantly, we now have the flexible, agile IT infrastructure we need to drive future digital initiatives.”
Beacon Lighting worked with OPIA Technology, a Riverbed Elite partner, to develop a streamlined migration strategy and design in order to maximise the value the retailer received from the Riverbed solution.
Andy Suggars, OPIA Technology Director, said: “Beacon Lighting and our team evaluated multiple vendors’ offerings as part of our design consultation. We kept coming back to Riverbed because of the power and simplicity of the integrated and unified SD-WAN and Wi-Fi solution, and the ability to manage it all centrally from a single cloud console. It checked all the boxes on what Beacon Lighting’s IT team needed to drive the outcomes the business required, and became the cornerstone of our bespoke network design that maximised agility, security and digital performance.”
About Riverbed SteelConnect
Riverbed SteelConnect is the leading cloud networking and SD-WAN solution, securely connecting users and the business to the applications and digital services they need, wherever they reside. SteelConnect is the industry’s first and only product that provides unified connectivity and policy-based orchestration spanning the entire network – LAN/WLAN (including cloud-based Riverbed Xirrus Wi-Fi), WAN, data center and the cloud, with one-click connectivity and optimisation into AWS and Microsoft Azure. SteelConnect enables zero-touch provisioning and seamlessly integrates with third-party network security services, such as Zscaler’s cloud security platform. For more information on Riverbed’s SDWAN solutions, visit: https://www.riverbed.com/solutions/sd-wan.html.
SteelConnect is part of the Riverbed Digital Performance Platform, which brings together a powerful combination of Digital Experience Management and Next-Generation Infrastructure solutions that span edge, data centre and cloud, enabling organisations to maximise digital performance.
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Riverbed®, The Digital Performance Company™, enables organisations to maximise digital performance across every aspect of their business, allowing customers to rethink possible. Riverbed’s unified and integrated Digital Performance Platform™ brings together a powerful combination of Digital Experience, Cloud Networking and Cloud Edge solutions that provides a modern IT architecture for the digital enterprise, delivering new levels of operational agility and dramatically accelerating business performance and outcomes. At more than $1 billion in annual revenue, Riverbed’s 30,000+ customers include 98% of the Fortune 100 and 100% of the Forbes Global 100. Learn more at riverbed.com.