After acquiring the proper licenses and working to get your dispensary open to the public, it’s time to start thinking about your online presence if you don’t already have a plan in place. Even with limited time and a limited budget, there are things you can do to get your business online.
Make sure to have the following in place in advance of your shop’s opening date:
A professional website on a custom domain that reflects the personality and style of your business. The most successful dispensaries take their image and reputation very seriously, so you should avoid using Gmail or other free email services. Free email accounts won’t instill confidence in your potential customer.
Professional help can be a good investment when it comes to getting your business online, but before you hire anyone it is good to do some research so you have a sense of your options.
Accounts created for both Leafly and Weedmaps, which are popular directories of recreational and medical dispensaries, are a necessity. Besides being great for SEO, these two sites have a lot of users looking for dispensaries or particular strains, so make sure to get your business and inventory listed.
A Google business listing to give users crucial information of your business at a glance, without leaving the Google search results page. This will increase your presence in search and display information like hours, address and phone number next to photos, reviews and directions to your business. Claim and verify your business, make sure your information is up-to-date, respond to reviews, and take a look at the analytics to learn more about your audience.
At least one social media account on a major platform, though it would be ideal to have two or three. Each of the social platforms has its pros and cons, but all four listed below are worth the effort and don’t cost anything to join or maintain. For help crafting your voice over social media, check out this guide of do’s and don’ts.
- Facebook is a great place to start for your business, and likely the most familiar. Set up your business page with high-quality images and up-to-date business profile and location information. You will want to post at least a few times a week, promoting events, sales, new products, etc.
- Twitter is a great secondary option, and because it’s short form content, you should be tweeting and retweeting others several times a day if possible. Be sure to keep your audience in mind as you post, making sure to provide useful or interesting information they will care about.
- Instagram is a great option if you have someone on staff with photography skills. You can really make your business stand apart from its competition by showing your space and products in creative ways, and it’s a great place for potential customers to discover your business.
- Massroots is a new social platform specifically for cannabis enthusiasts. People can connect with each other, share experiences, search for dispensaries, and discover new strains. Dispensaries can edit their business information, hours and more to help members find their shop.
Follow the steps listed above to ensure that you are getting the most visibility with the least effort and time. The only item on the list that will cost you money is your website, and the link provided should give you a couple of options depending on what kind of budget you are working with.
Finally, be sure that if your business experiences any significant changes — such as a new location, hours, phone number, etc. — that you remember to update your information for every platform on which you are registered.
Get daily cannabis business news updates. Subscribe