The Most Important Day for Cannabis Retailers

4/20 is arguably the most famous random day turned holiday in the country in recent memory. Many people can’t even hear the number 420 without thinking of cannabis and most cannabis businesses rely on this day for a huge share of their yearly dispensary sales. Because of this, 4/20 has turned into one of the biggest daily average sales for many retail cannabis companies. In this article, we will be talking about how your dispensary can maximize cannabis sales and make the most out of the 4/20 holiday rush. With an effective digital marketing strategy, 4/20 is the greatest opportunity in the industry to increase sales and expand your existing customer base.

4/20 is the biggest holiday of the year for both recreational cannabis and medical marijuana dispensaries, pretty much any cannabis business, and the community at large. Essentially, April 20 is Black Friday for cannabis dispensaries, and the days leading up to it aren’t to be forgotten either. Big opportunities like this are hard to come by. For example, on 4/20 in 2021 springbig retail cannabis stores saw over 60% more visits compared to the previous month and an increase in cannabis sales of almost 100% from the previous year’s 4/20. Based on previous years, we can assume the cannabis industry and 4/20 holiday sales will continue to grow in the years to come.

Interested in seeing a full breakdown of 4/20 statistics from 2021? Click Here!

High hopes for 2022 cannabis sales

4/20/2022 will be a highly competitive day for dispensaries nationwide, as all cannabis retailers go all out for the holiday with great deals for customers. However, strong operating performance on the day can make a statement amongst your customers, help you stand out from big chains, and carry your shop through the entire month and even year.

Opportunities like this are great ways to generate a large increase in revenue in one day (and the days prior), but they also leave a lasting impression on the many new customers who will be using the holiday as their first experience with cannabis. Leaving a lasting impression on your target audience on 4/20 can turn them into loyal regulars, which as we well know make up the largest percentage of your revenue even if they are only a small percentage of total customers.

While maximizing sales on 4/20 is the goal, if you build a personal connection on 4/20 it will encourage customers throughout the year especially when other holidays come around. In years past we’ve seen that the best performing dispensary on 4/20 often retains the highest market share of flower products sales throughout the rest of the year. So 4/20 isn’t only a great opportunity to make huge sales on the day but also cement your business’ position as the market leader.

To make sure you stand out, you’ll want to leverage every marketing channel available and run sales starting a week before the day itself so customers can start planning what products they want to get and maybe come in early and avoid long lines. This includes email marketing, text marketing, social media marketing, community events, and of course website announcements. Running campaigns on along with customer referral programs can direct both old and new customers to your dispensary on the big day. Customers know to expect great deals on this holiday, so campaigns during 4/20 are way more effective at generating demand than your average campaigns.

One difference you will want to pay attention to this year is the fact that 4/20 isn’t on a weekend, it’s on a Wednesday. This means that being mindful of your customers’ work schedule and possibly staying open a bit later will be necessary to make sure your customers make the most of the festivities. Having it on the weekend would be optimal, but we’re used to adapting and overcoming in the cannabis industry.

As said, you don’t want to wait to kick off your marketing campaigns just a couple of days before the holiday. You’ll want to start promoting your 4/20 special and encouraging people to enroll in your loyalty rewards program in the weeks leading up to the holiday. We recommend you aim to maximize your dispensary’s performance on 4/20 by leveraging the power of e-commerce, education, and data analytics.

Adapting to the e-commerce trend

Both the Canadian and the US cannabis industries have matured in recent years as more legal markets have opened up, cannabis marketing and technology have broken through various regulatory barriers and finally entered the e-commerce space. What was once a cash-only brick-and-mortar experience has evolved into a tech-driven operation that utilizes advanced POS systems, online retailers, and dispensary technology.

Cannabis consumers seem to have enthusiastically embraced these developments. Recent data from clients that have integrated e-commerce platforms into their retail stores have shown that the average store had an increase in sales by 52% and up to 130% from January 2020 to April 2020.

The percentage of cannabis retail dispensaries’ customer base ordering online last year increased by 142% from February to April 2020. Delivery orders are also rising as delivery sales have increased by 46% from February to April 2020 and 115% from January to April 2020. This trend is likely to continue in 2022, as customers have grown accustomed to the convenience of online shopping.

Because of this, leveraging e-commerce is key. You’ll want to make sure that your menu is easily accessible on your website as possible. This doesn’t just mean it’s working well, but that it is

While the most popular ones may differ from state to state, a good place to start is with our partner e-commerce sites including Olla, Dispense, and iheartjane.

Another thing to look out for is avoiding long lines. Many customers don’t want to get caught up in the frenzy on the actual holiday. Encourage customers to stock up on their preferred products or services before the day itself and make sure to have enough employees. This will help reduce wait times and help prevent the possibility that the most popular products will sell out on 4/20 before everyone has had a chance to buy them. Especially since 4/20 falls in the middle of the week in 2022, which means you can likely spread out 4/20 sales to last until the weekend to get more customers throughout the week.

You can also accomplish this by encouraging online ordering. springbig has full integration with many major cannabis delivery solutions. If you don’t have a delivery solution, encouraging customers to purchase products online and pick up in-store is another great way to cut down on long lines and expedite the customer shopping experience during the holiday rush.

Educate new consumers with content marketing

4/20 will likely be the time when people who have been on the fence about trying cannabis will decide to partake. In fact, 4/20 is one of the most popular days for new users to make their first purchases. As more states move forward with the legalization of adult-use cannabis, there’s an increasingly growing consumer base that is showing interest in the industry.

Now that it is no longer taboo, the primary barrier keeping these potential customers from trying is simply a lack of knowledge or intimidation. Over the years, as the retail cannabis market has developed there has been a slew of new cannabis products and cannabis accessories developed, which can be intimidating to some.

This is what is known as the Paradox of Choice. Someone may walk into your store, take a look at the wide range of choices and have no idea what most of it is and how it will affect them. A great way to solve this problem is through education to reduce intimidation. Simply conveying the benefits of cannabis and educating the consumer on different products can be all it takes. Remember buying recreational and medical cannabis isn’t just like buying groceries, it is a psychoactive substance and people are wary of how it will affect them.

You can also utilize companies like Seed Technologies which have solved this by providing dispensaries with an interactive digital platform that offers standardized cannabis information and guides customers through the buying process.

“Dispensaries face a unique challenge when it comes to providing a superior customer experience. With a high mix of inexperienced users, the burden to educate consumers on cannabis falls on the dispensary staff.

This can be complicated even more if the shopper is not made comfortable enough to ask what can be sensitive questions in order to get the right product fit.”  Matthew Cutone, CEO of Seed Technologies.

Some customers on 4/20 may be so new that they don’t even know the difference between flowers and extracts, so putting out basic educational resources on your website and in your store will help these on-the-fence customers.

By placing a Seed Kiosk at the front of your store you can ask new customers what physical effects they are seeking from Cannabis and various other questions to formulate curated and personalized recommendations for specific products within your inventory. This will make sure your new customers walk out with a positive experience.

Find out what cannabis products your customers really want

You know your loyal customers better than anyone. We simply help you track what they love. Use springbig’s comprehensive, real-time analytics to brush up and stock up on what your customers want. After checking your store’s dashboard and tracking your past retail cannabis sales, you can see which products were most popular on previous holidays and make sure you’re able to stock up for 4/20 with all of your customer’s favorites.

Analyze your dispensary metrics in the weeks leading to the holiday so you can create deals tailored to best serve your visitors and clear out your stock. This allows you to make sure you’ll have enough inventory of popular products to last through the 4/20 sales and customize your campaigns based on your inventory in the weeks leading to April 20.

If you want to understand your loyal customers, then running a couple of customer surveys through our feedback solution will help you figure out exactly what your customers want to see for 4/20. With Budtender, you can easily send out customer surveys, collect data, and organize it with virtually no effort. In this way, you can create a true one-of-a-kind complete customer experience tailored to your customer’s needs, which can help build brand loyalty.

On top of this, 4/20 promotional products that may not be popular with experienced users like pre-rolls will sell at higher rates on 4/20 due to a large amount of inexperienced or completely new ones looking to partake in the cannabis community’s biggest day of the year. In fact, according to a study by Headset, pre-rolls have been the most popular 4/20 item for 3 years in a row. So make sure your dispensary is well-stocked with products that are popular with new users, such as pre-rolls and vape pens.

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