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- Date Established
- Naples, Florida
- Low price
- Excellent inventory management
- Built-in loyalty and online ordering
- Free plan no longer available
- Some training necessary to get used to the interface
There are two things you need to understand about Naples, Florida-based point of sale system Linga POS right off the bat. First, its free plan is no longer available. And second, for a POS with a $19.99/month starting price point, Linga boasts some impressive features and robust capabilities. The number of features Linga offers still makes this restaurant POS system a good bet, even though the starter plan is no longer free. Linga’s POS capabilities are at the forefront of the industry’s standards, and its inventory management system is highly capable. Whether you want to set up your restaurant’s register in Chinese or manage your pizza delivery orders, there’s an excellent chance Linga can support your needs.
Although it may come with a slight learning curve, Linga’s versatility and affordability make it worth any time spent figuring it out. Keep reading for a full review of Linga POS.
Table of Contents
When updating this review, I noticed that the free plan was no longer on the pricing page of the Linga website. The cheapest plan now is the “Basic,” priced at $19.99/month, billed annually (which is still a pretty excellent price for a cloud POS). I reached out to Linga just to make sure this was correct. They confirmed that the company had removed its free “Starter” plan, kept Basic, Pro, Enterprise, and added “Linga One,” which includes all add-ons and a license for three registers.
Each price plan and its respective features are listed below.
- $19.99/month/register billed annually ($39.99/month/register billed monthly)
- Unlimited users
- Unlimited products
- Button with pictures
- Happy hours
- Gift cards
- Multi-store gift cards
- Split payments
- Tax exceptions
- Offline transactions
- Void transaction
- Integrated credit card processing
- Digital receipts
- Signature on pad
- Till management
- Barcode scanning
- Sales dashboards
- Business hours
- Employee performance tracking
- Unlimited employees
- Assign security access levels
- Nest cameras
- Nest thermostat
- Wi-Fi hot spot guest data collection
- Email marketing
- Receipt message
- Receipt printing
- Split checks
- Split evenly
- Split by seat
- Email support
- $49.99/month/register paid annually ($69.99/month/register paid monthly)
- All features of the Starter Plan
- 24/7 support
- Phone support
- Chat support
- Employee dashboard
- Transfer check
- Transfer table
- Merge check
- Bar tabs
- Quick bar
- Bar tab pre-authorizations with EMV
- Bar tabs to tables
- Kitchen display system
- Kitchen printing
- Label chit printing
- Purchase orders
- Recipe/sub recipe
- Food costing
- Inventory storage locations
- Inventory comparison
- Multiple vendors
- SKU/UPC inventory tracking
- Phone orders
- Pizza portioning
- Time clock
- Payroll reporting
- Table layout
- $89.99/month/register paid annually ($109.99/month/register paid monthly)
- All features of the Basic and Pro Plans
- Enterprise gift cards
- Multi-site management
- Country-level management
- Consolidated reporting
- Royalty/ACH reporting
- Customer loyalty
- Customer analytics
- House accounts
- Call for pricing details
- All features of Basic and Pro Plans
- Customer loyalty
- Customer analytics
- House accounts
- Online ordering
- Customer display
- Caller ID
- Waitlist and reservations
Linga also offers a pay-as-you-go plan which includes hardware financing with no upfront cost. Additionally, Linga offers custom plans for larger users.
Cloud-Based Or Locally-Installed
Linga is entirely cloud-based. You can access and adjust your store’s account information from Linga’s back-office website, accessible from any web browser.
Linga is most suited to foodservice businesses.
Specific Size Of Business
Linga advertises that it is capable of catering to the needs of businesses large and small and can work comfortably with any size of business. Multi-location businesses will need an Enterprise or higher package.
Hardware & Operating System Requirements
The Linga POS register is only compatible with iPads. However, you can log into your account to see reports and make adjustments to your menu, settings, etc., from any device via a web browser.
Ease Of Use
While Linga is not necessarily difficult to use, it would be nice to have a bit more guidance when first setting it up. (An initial tutorial, for example, is lacking.) Figuring out how to add inventory, create menu items, and sync the POS register with the back end is a time-consuming process that requires some trial and error to sort out.
Overall though, Linga is intuitive enough. After a slight learning curve, it’s reasonably easy to use. You can also find YouTube tutorials on individual functions, such as how to add a basic menu item in Linga POS.
As you can see below, you can enter detailed information when adding an inventory item.
Likewise, when creating a product category, you will be given many different choices and options. The screen for adding a new category is pictured below.
The difficulty involved with Linga is the sheer number of features available and the level of detail each feature entails. Unless you’re a POS pro, don’t expect to be able to begin using Linga immediately without first taking some time to play around with the software. You’ll likely have to consult the knowledgebase to learn about each feature. Again, there’s a bit of a learning curve here, and it can be time-consuming.
Linga POS comes packed with features, mostly at the Pro and Enterprise price points. There is no “Getting Started” tutorial or guided screens to describe features, so it can be a trial-and-error process to learn how to get started and use all the features. The dashboard and back-office screens are also not as streamlined and attractive as some other cloud POS systems. Plus, the copy can be awkward (“Menu Configuration lets you to configure menu items through valid user inputs in a workbook containing sheets as parts of whole configuration.”).
However, despite the interface issues, the features themselves are pretty strong. I have described several of the standout ones below, with more listed on the Linga site.
- Register: Linga’s register covers all the bases and then some. You can split payments by several payment methods (cash, credit card, and gift card). The payment calculator continuously calculates the amount still owed as payments are added. The payment tab also allows you to enter in tax exemptions, add gratuity, and apply discounts. When you open the register, you will immediately be prompted to select an order type: for here, to go, or delivery. According to Linga’s website, delivery orders allow you to “group orders based on destination and ETA, and make sure your drivers get there in time with the least amount of resources.” Linga also handles bar tabs, and open or closed tabs can be searched for by name, order number, or the last four digits of the credit card.
- Modifiers: You’ll be able to modify an item when selecting it at the beginning of the order process. A menu item can be preset to have either optional or mandatory modifiers. Once the item has been sent to the kitchen, however, further modification is not possible. Modifiers make menu items highly customizable. Any item included in your inventory can be added. You can also add a custom message for the kitchen staff, detailing a customer’s specific preferences.
- Customer-Facing Interface: You can provide an enhanced customer experience with onscreen tipping and digital signatures for an extra $9.99/month per station.
- Pizza By The Slice: Designed with the pizzeria in mind, the pizza-by-the-slice feature maximizes the customizability of a pizza. Customers can choose how they want each slice prepared and what toppings they would like on it.
- Inventory Management: Linga’s inventory management abilities — included with Pro and Enterprise plans — are impressive. From the back office, you’ll have access to Linga’s inventory homepage. The homepage displays the total value on hand, the cost of goods sold (COGS), low stocks (and their respective quantities), and non-consumer orders. The “ingredient categories” tab displays each ingredient within your inventory. Each ingredient entered into your inventory is assigned a category (food, beverage, etc.), storage location (freezer, cabinet, etc.), and the vendor from whom the item was purchased. The system tracks low stocks and notifies you when an inventory item dips below a certain quantity (set by you). Linga can automatically reorder inventory at your discretion, or you can manually create a purchase order. The details of each item’s purchase history are saved for future use.
- Offline Functionality: Linga can function even without a working Wi-Fi connection.
- Reporting: The back-office dashboard provides a quick way to glance at your business’s sales status. The photo below is a screenshot of the dashboard and the reporting categories it displays.
In the back office, you can also do things, such as adjust modifiers, sort menu configurations, and see customer information.
- Loyalty Program: Linga offers a point-based loyalty program that customers can use to receive rewards. Note that this is an add-on that costs an extra $29.99/month.
- Multi-Language & Multi-Currency: Linga POS can translate into over 30 different world languages, including Chinese, Spanish, Arabic, Hebrew, German, Polish, Turkish, Portuguese, and more. Linga also claims that additional languages may be able to be added if they are not already available for translation. Additionally, Linga POS is compatible with every world currency.
- Time-Sensitive Discounts: Apply discounts for certain holidays, days of the week, or even hours of the day. This type of feature is useful for happy hour specials.
- Table Management: You design your floor plan layout, and Linga POS will do the rest. It can calculate guest count at particular tables, dining time length, and even the average check amount.
- Delivery Dispatch: This function allows you to keep track of your drivers. Know the time and location of every delivery, so no orders are delivered late.
- Online Ordering: Linga’s online ordering system — available as a $59.99 add-on — seems pretty advanced. It has a branded mobile app option and a multi-location functionality that sends customers to the correct location based on where they’re at.
Integrations & Add-Ons
Linga currently integrates with the following third-party software programs:
- Quickbooks, Xero, and Shogo for accounting
- Checkmate for online ordering and delivery (integrates with UberEats, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, and more)
- Givex for gift cards
- Mailchimp for email marketing
- Nest security cameras and thermostat
- Restaurant 365 for inventory and recipe control
- Factor4 for customer loyalty
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Customer Service & Support
The level of support you receive from Linga depends on the plan you pay for. Linga’s Basic Plan does not allow for direct access to the support team. However, there is a knowledgebase on the company’s website. The knowledgebase includes:
- Training videos
- User manuals
For Pro and Enterprise Plan subscribers, Linga offers:
- 24/7 direct access to a support team via telephone
- Access to Linga’s knowledgebase
Linga also maintains a blog. The blog focuses on topics related to restaurant businesses in general and should not necessarily be seen as a source for help with Linga specifically.
A Facebook page, Twitter account, and YouTube channel are also available for tips and added support.
Linga does not specify whether its support is US-based; the company’s US headquarters is in Naples, Florida. However, Linga’s parent company, Benseron Hospitality, also has offices in India, Dubai, Canada, and Turkey. Copy on both the website and in the POS software itself has some grammatical issues, and it seems it was probably not written by a native English speaker.
There are not too many reviews of Linga to be found online, as the product is not as widely used as its competitors, such as TouchBistro or Toast. But in general, reviews of Linga are positive and agree that Linga packs serious bang for your buck.
Negative Reviews & Complaints
- Software Bugs & Lagging: Several customers noticed that the software had some bugs and issues with lagging, particularly after updates.
- Hardware Compatibility: Linga’s limited hardware compatibility, being exclusive to the iPad, is cited as a concern for some.
Positive Reviews & Testimonials
- Low Price: Positive reviews understandably focused on and raved about the free plan. However, as mentioned, this plan is no longer available.
- Robust Features: Linga is nothing if not feature-rich. One user states:
It is fast and supports all the functionalities of a real restaurant POS, Happy Hours, Purchase Order, Time Clock, Recipe Costing, Inventory management, Auto creation of PO from low stock items.
- Helpful Customer Service: Reviewers note that customer support is helpful and readily available, even if they are not always able to resolve issues.
Linga assigns each user a unique pin code that is immediately entered upon login. You’ll also have the ability to limit the actions of each employee based on a list of restrictions.
Linga uses point-to-point encryption to protect its users’ data.
Linga POS has many advanced features. With a $19.99/month plan, Linga is a solid POS solution for foodservice businesses with basic needs. Even with the $59.99/month “Pro” plan, Linga still provides a lot of bang for your buck, from bar tabs to pizza portioning. The sheer number of features it boasts, however, puts it at risk of becoming an overly-complex, “jack of all trades, master of none” software. And depending on what you need in a POS, that may be true.
Despite the interface’s steep learning curve and awkward copy, I can see that Linga’s underlying functionality is strong. The $59.99/month “Pro” plan seems as if it would provide much of or all the functionality any restaurant would need. However, I would be hesitant to commit to paying $700+ (which is what you’ll pay upfront to use the Basic plan for one year) to use a system that still seems a little rough around the edges.
Nevertheless, with so many fantastic features, minor flaws in user-friendliness can be overlooked once you learn the system. Overall, the system is a great value with a robust feature-set, and I look forward to seeing if the interface becomes more polished in the future.
We've done in-depth testing of each and confidently recommend them.
We've done in-depth testing of each and confidently recommend them.