Mostly everyone knows the difference between marijuana and CBD, but not all retailers seem to fully appreciate the ways in which cannabidiol products can add to the profitability of their medical and adult-use dispensaries.
And that’s puzzling, because as in-demand as THC products are today, CBD products are equally, if not more, popular with today’s consumers across all age demographics. And adult-use dispensaries are uniquely qualified to tap into this slice of the legal cannabis market. Consider some of the reasons why:
CBD is wildly popular
First, CBD already is a huge segment of the legal cannabis space, and its market is forecast to hit $18 billion to $25 billion in just five years, depending on which expert analysis you consider.
It’s not hyperbole to suggest that CBD is popular with practically everyone everywhere. More than 30% of Americans are using CBD consistently, with people 18-64 using it repeatedly by remarkable double-digit percentages. And 8% of Americans older than 65 are relying on it, too.
With such a wide audience of consumers, it’s no wonder CBD products are popping up in retail pharmacies, grocery stores and even the corner 7-Eleven.
And that popularity couldn’t be more robust, either, because of today’s COVID-19 pandemic, which has seen a huge uptick in consumer interest for a range of health and wellness products, of which CBD is a highly publicized part.
Dispensaries can provide expertise that’s lacking
With so many different retailers embracing CBD today, dispensaries have a clear business advantage in doing the same. Because unlike all those other brick-and-mortar sites selling cannabidiol products, dispensaries are the only retailers with the science-based knowledge and industry expertise to expertly guide consumers on CBD purchasing decisions.
Consumers aren’t getting that kind of guidance from general-market retailers. Only cannabis dispensaries can deliver that, and it can make a huge difference when so many consumers are attracted to CBD yet don’t fully understand how or why it works. As dispensaries educate consumers about CBD products (either in-store or online), that builds an important level of trust between retailers and their customers. And that trust, of course, can mean repeat sales.
And let’s face it: Many substandard CBD products found in the general retail environment simply don’t work as advertised. Most don’t contain the amount of CBD they advertise. Worse, many don’t have the same COAs and other safety protections that boost consumer confidence.
Adult-use cannabis dispensaries, on the other hand, live and breathe by providing these kinds of consumer safeguards for all of their products. That’s why Leaf Trade’s CBD clients, such as The Native Hemp*, are such reliable resources for the dispensaries that use them. The Maryland-based wholesaler publishes bar-coded COAs for all its products, giving dispensaries and their retail customers the safety information they need to trust the products they use. Or Pennsylvania-based Nature’s Finest USA, a “farm-to-table” operation that works with local farmers to help them produce the highest-quality plant material to be extracted for innovative, science-based products.
When dispensaries have this vital information and pass it along to their customers with each sale, why would consumers ever again purchase a CBD product from a convenience store?
CBD can be a gateway to THC products
As dispensaries attract more repeat CBD consumer traffic, they also stand to sell more of their THC products, too. That’s because as today’s adult consumers experience the health and wellness effects of CBD, they naturally become more open to expanding their cannabis use in other ways. And nothing reflects this better than the rising popularity of THC-CBD ratio products.
That’s fairly amazing when you consider that, even with the current rise in adult-use legalization across the U.S., THC products still carry a lingering stigma for many people, especially older Americans who have lived through decades of War on Drugs misinformation. But many of these new consumers now are finding that CBD is not only safe to use but can be incredibly effective in treating multiple health conditions, many of which are middle-age conditions, whether it’s anxiety or inflammation.
Through destigmatizing cannabis with expert information, CBD can open up a whole new world for new cannabis consumers. And it’s a world in which adult-use dispensaries take center stage because of the information they provide and the consumer trust they instill.
CBD can expand audience reach online and in store
Adult-use cannabis is a highly regulated and restricted market. But CBD? Not at all. In fact, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD can be sold in any state and even be shipped across state lines.
It’s incredibly easy for recreational dispensaries to purchase CBD from wholesalers, distribute the products to their stores and sell them to practically anyone without confronting state and federal illegalities that affect adult-use cannabis.
This also makes CBD an obvious product choice for dispensaries wanting to launch online stores that can sell and distribute products in all 50 states. As important as digital sales of CBD might be to dispensaries now, imagine the benefit to come once federal legalization takes hold. (And, believe us, it will.) Smaller dispensary operations that launch digital efforts to sell CBD now will be well-placed for a future in which online adult-use sales will take on greater importance.
These are just some of the ways for which cannabis dispensaries should consider stocking their shelves with CBD products alongside their THC ones. Obviously, selling CBD isn’t an either-or proposition for dispensaries. Instead, CBD is something that can bring in more customers, help sell more THC products and even position retail stores for greater success as legalization efforts expand nationwide.
Leaf Trade can uniquely help adult-use dispensaries tap into the potential offered by CBD products. Our online ordering, fulfillment and payment platform represents an array of premium CBD wholesalers, and our expert staff can help dispensaries match the best cannabidiol products with the distinct needs of their customers.
Leaf Trade can uniquely help adult-use dispensaries tap into the potential offered by CBD products. Our online ordering, fulfillment and payment platform represents an array of premium CBD wholesalers, who are vetted for quality and bring diversified product offerings to our buyers.