With nearly half of U.S. small businesses not having a website, it seems unimaginable that these companies haven’t drawn their last breath yet. After all, the Internet has come a long way from being an innovation to becoming a part of our everyday lives.
As a business owner of a cannabis dispensary, you are likely seeking new and, at the same time, affordable opportunities to gather more clients around your business. What you cannot afford is the lack of a neat, well-thought, and user-friendly web design. However, sometimes you may not have the know-how to establish the extended version of your virtual business card, and there is nothing worse than shooting blinds when investing money in your company.
Fear not! Whether you’re a self-taught man and you like to keep matters in your own hands, or you’re considering hiring a cannabis marketing agency, this quick guideline will help you understand the basics of an appealing cannabis website.
First things first: BRANDING
The vast majority of marijuana businesses chooses to pick various versions of the green cannabis leaf as their logo. Unfortunately, a sheer cannabis leaf won’t make you stand out from the crowd, so you should think of your target. Are you a medical cannabis dispensary? If the answer is yes, consider the typeface that is both unique and appropriate for your potential customers. Aside from conveying the relevant message, your logo should be versatile; keep in mind that you will also market your business on platforms other than websites, so having a versatile image of your company is a dead giveaway.
Keep the design cohesive and user-friendly
It’s believed that if you don’t leave a positive impression on your visitors in the initial 5 seconds, they will most likely hit the back button, which will result in a higher bounce rate, which is one of the statistics you don’t want to keep high. Thus, it’s of utmost importance that you take care of the User Experience. This includes following elements:
- Colors: keep them in a palette that is similar to the one of your logo. For a cannabis business, you will most likely go with various shades of green and such hues that will complement the overall design.
- Navigation: The header should be a static element of your web design, as the most important tabs are kept there. Also, the text column must be the center of your consumers’ attention. So while having a sidebar on the main page is completely fine, its appearance near the product description or an article on your blog will keep people distracted. Last but not least, the footer is where you’re going to put all other details, such as the hours of work, a newsletter form, or social media icons. To cut the long story short, put yourself in the shoes of your users and design the navigation with their experience in mind.
- Fonts: Gone are the times of flamboyant fonts on websites. They serve no actual purpose and their decorative value is highly disputable. It’s better to make it simple and consistent throughout the page. After all, the text is a significant part of your website’s volume.
- Simplicity: Don’t make your website a Christmas tree. Always strive for achieving the balance between the appeal and functionality. It’s easy to go overboard with various knick-knacks, but it’s difficult to make a second good impression.
- Visuals: For your products, it’s best to hire a professional photographer and, if you use images available on the web for your articles, make sure they are of the top-notch quality.
Now, enough of the lightweight stuff. Let’s focus on some less obvious yet still critical features of an appealing cannabis website.
Optimize the loading time of your page
I bet you’ve come across websites that granted you with the courtesy of making a morning cup of coffee before it finally loaded. Don’t do that to your users. Always aim for the least codes possible, optimize your images and, as mentioned before, don’t overload your website with unnecessary visuals.
Don’t limit yourself to the desktop
In 2016, mobile usage overcame desktop for the first time. Most of the contemporary users are on the move and they adjust every habit to their lifestyles. Guess what? Browsing websites is no different! Such a phenomenon is a fuel for responsive web design so that your customers are as pleased with their mobile experience, as they are with using your page on desktops. By thinking ahead you’re investing in the future and now, with all the signs on the World Wide Web, responsive is the new black.
Make sure the Call-To-Action button is noticeable
Whether you run a cannabis dispensary that offers delivery or you want to provide your readers with a free e-book to broaden their knowledge about the subject presented on your website, it is essential to make the CTA button visible yet not assaulting. If you look at any successful e-commerce businesses, you will notice that their CTA buttons are well-placed and convey the message adequate to the offer.
Update the content
While it may not be obvious at first glance, content is a huge part of your website’s design. Your customers and readers want to feel that you care, and there is no better way to prove it than updating the content. Be regular, consistent, and if you can’t update the core of your page, do it through your social media channels. Remember to implement specific widgets for your Facebook, Twitter, and other means through which you keep your clients updated about any significant changes.
You may feel tempted to go overboard with the testimonials but, for your own good, include only real ones. Don’t make up some fake personas, because today, you can verify everything you see on the Internet. Also, place the testimonials section somewhere between the main column and your footer.
These are the deciding factors when it comes to creating an appealing cannabis website. Although there is a lot more to learn, you can use them to get the general glimpse of the website building strategy. It will help you choose the best cannabis marketing agency and leave you with a clear conscience that you have spent the money in the best possible way.
What about you? Do you know any awesome tips & tricks for creating an appealing cannabis website? Have you implemented such strategies in your business?
With the vast majority of people constantly on the run, every business should keep up with the pace of their lives. Mobile devices turned our lifestyles upside down, from the way we work, play, and connect with other people. Since all the signs point to industries turning to smart technologies, I’m going to introduce you to 7 reasons why establishing a responsive website design will influence your digital marketing strategies, especially when it comes to the cannabis industry.
- Mobile is growing faster than a well-nourished cannabis plant
According to Mary Janez Brand, up to 80% of local mobile searches result in purchases. Given that more than one fifth of Google searches is performed via mobile devices, one simply cannot walk on by such measures. Moreover, the most important search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing are investing tons of money in the mobile industry. Should that not suffice, let me take you on a quick trip around other mobile-related statistics:
- In 2015, mobile internet usage overtook desktop usage.
- In the United States alone, 25% of Internet enthusiasts get connected only via a mobile device.
- Half of all local searches were performed on a smartphone or tablet in 2012.
- 40% of people bounce from a page that is not mobile-friendly, even if it’s one of the top search results.
Now, speaking of bouncing from one’s page, let’s take a peek at another essential advantage of a mobile-friendly website.
- Mobile gives you enhanced User Experience
They say that a chance to make a good first impression is given to you only once. Well, I couldn’t agree more! I mean, how many times did you leave the desired page because you had to zoom it in and out constantly, moving your fingers around the screen like a lunatic just to see the necessary information? It’s believed that 48% of people say that even if they are fond of a company, they will give up on leaving their mark on their website if it remains only desktop-adjusted. If you compare this fact with the data from IBMCommerce’s Black Friday report for 2015, where it occurred that mobile sales took over 75% of the whole sales’ pie, just imagine your conversion rates when your website is not a mobile-friendly one. Or, for your own good, don’t do it – you’ll suffer from instant depression.
- Google LOVES mobile
Comscore has it that Google won 63,7% of the search market share in 2016. Although it’s slightly less than in 2013 (with a 67% of the market share), Google remains a prevalent tool in the World Wide Web. There are many reasons why this search engine prefers responsive design, one of which is its efficiency for the Google’s indexation. In addition, the tool considers responsive websites faster and easier to organize their online content in the Search Console. Last but not least, in 2015, Google released their mobile-friendly ranking algorithm, which was a huge blow to companies without a responsive design, not to mention that those who took care of their mobile-friendly websites were highly rewarded for thinking ahead.
- Mobile equals better conversion
As an entrepreneur, you want your business to thrive, and with the ongoing growth of mobile usage, you will be focused on maximizing your online sales. If you run, say, a cannabis dispensary that provides online delivery, you will be looking for ways to squeeze the most of the opportunities provided by the mobile-friendly web design. However, most people won’t even complete a signup form if they have to run a finger-marathon over their smartphone’s or tablet’s screen to insert all the information, let alone going through the unoptimized checkout process. That being said, if you want your prospective clients to convert, give them a simple and pleasant experience on your website!
- Mobile makes you stand out in a crowd
Despite the almost overwhelming popularity of mobile devices, only 56% online businesses use mobile-friendly web design. It’s like with lawyers and managers back in the late 90s; the number of responsive websites outnumbers their “outdated” counterparts, but the niche is not bursting at the seams yet. This may be your last chance to make your cannabis business unique and gain trust amongst the community.
- Mobile gives you local attention
Your potential clients are somewhere on the Internet; unfortunately for you, the Internet is quite a vast space, so without proper mobile marketing you may end up being difficult to find for people. Let them get to your front door by optimizing tools like Google Maps to turn traffic into real customers. Such actions will include easily accessible information, such as “Hours of Operations”, “Discounts”, “Find Us”, etc. To cut the long story short, a mobile-friendly website is an ace up in your sleeve to turn a local lead into a local sale.
- Mobile saves time
I may repeat myself, but if you adjust your business to the pace of your customers’ lives, it’s all the better. People are on the go constantly, and they’re handling their matters the same way. Besides, nobody has the time and strength to carry two or three different devices on the road when they can conduct their businesses with a smartphone, right? Read your clients’ minds, meet their demands, and you’ll end up with a win-win situation.
Just be friendly… mobile friendly!
To wrap it up, I should say that a mobile-friendly website is without a doubt of paramount importance for the cannabis industry – the above reasons leave no stone unturned.If you’re an owner of a neat, UX-oriented page, you may consider yourself safe. If not, remember that there are still 44% of businesses without such a solution. You can either have your share in decreasing this number, or you may very well turn away business and money due to the lack of investment in a mobile-friendly copy.
To borrow from Mortal Combat’s most iconic slogan, choose your destiny!
When we say ‘common diseases’ we often think of the flu, some seasonal allergies or other disorders that we may accept as part of life that, in most cases, can be cured with a quick fix. However, there are also other common illnesses that bring shivers down our spine by only thinking about them. They are much more aggressive and they can wreak havoc on both our body and mind.
As much as we should appreciate the progress in contemporary medical practices, we have to face the ugly truth: they don’t always work as desired – and even if they do, they often leave our systems ravaged by the aggressive treatment they involve. Fortunately, we can always ask Mother Nature for help. Let’s take a peek at 7 common diseases medical cannabis can cure.
Cannabinoid compounds are working miracles against convulsions and there is empirical evidence in various cases of children who suffer from epilepsy. To keep it simple, cannabinoids keep neurons and synapses from getting too much excitement which is the main cause of seizures. For decades, patients who suffered from epilepsy were treated with prescription drugs and their effects were, least to say, disappointing. Not only does the medical cannabis ends seizure attacks within 30 seconds or so, but it also reduces their frequency, which makes the marijuana therapy super-effective.
It’s a well-known fact that cannabis can help cancer patients deal with pain, nausea, and the lack of appetite after chemotherapy. Well, there is some pretty good news for those who look for alternatives to cure cancer, too. THC prevents tumor growth and kills cancer cells. CBD on the other hand is capable of ‘turning down’ the gene that is responsible for metastasis; in other words, it stops cancer from spreading to other organs when the tumor is aggressive.
Cannabis treatments can fight all different forms of cancer, including these most difficult to treat that rarely respond to conventional methods. Most importantly, marijuana doesn’t destroy the healthy cells. On the contrary, cannabis takes part in the process of neurogenesis, which means that it creates new cells in our systems.
3. Alzheimer’s Disease
According to the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, THC has a positive effect on slowing the growth of beta-amyloid that is responsible for reducing the cognitive function of Alzheimer’s disease patients’ brains. Researchers observed that at the 6, 24, and 48-hour mark THC lowered beta-amyloid levels.
A small study of 50 people who smoked cannabis showed that those patients experienced less neuropathic pain, which is a good news for starters. More importantly, another human study that involved 10 HIV-positive cannabis users brought scientists to a conclusion that their subjects stayed in a better mood, slept better, and experienced greater appetite.
Optic nerves are harmed because of a reduced blood supply. The use of THC lowers both eye and blood pressure, which is helpful in treating glaucoma – one of the leading causes of blindness.
6. Menstrual cramps
Although menstrual cramps are not officially categorized as a disease, they are a huge pain in the neck of women who suffer from sickening pain during their period. Some women experienced less discomfort of period cramps while smoking marijuana. This phenomenon inspired Whoopie Goldberg so much that she recently established a medical cannabis company, Whoopi & Maya which specializes in selling marijuana-infused products for women.
Although an illness such as schizophrenia shouldn’t be accompanied by psychoactive substances that may produce some schizophrenic symptoms, it is the CBD that has been recently discovered to prevent this condition. CBD is a natural substitute for the omnipresent antipsychotic treatments. GW Pharmaceuticals, a company that prides itself in having the only license for growing cannabis in the United Kingdom, conducted a study, in which it dosed 20 patients with CBD and 19 subjects with amisulpride. While the results of both treatments appeared to be similar, the CBD group experienced fewer side effects than the other group.
As you can see, the cure for many common and dangerous diseases is much closer than you could expect – and most importantly, it’s given to you by Mother Earth herself.
Cannabis is already a significant business, with a promising potential to grow (that’s not a pun!) even bigger. The gigantic snowball effect brought to us with marijuana legalization across the United States have made the industry thriving once again with all its branches – dispensaries included.
However, cannabis marketing can get tricky from time to time; Although the medical use of marijuana is legal in 23 states (and the legalization of the recreational use of cannabis seems to be on the similar track), the plant itself remains illegal on the federal level, entailing numerous complications, about which I would like to speak to you later in this article.
That being said, is there a way to run your business, be the part of the cannabis industry, have your dispensary promoted, and, at the same time, obey the letter of the law? Or, in short, should you hire a cannabis marketing agency?
Let me help you figure it out!
The Obstacles in Advertising Cannabis
While it seems that the Internet and Social Media make a perfect environment for the cannabis industry to thrive, you may want to reconsider your opinion on that after dealing with running Facebook Ads/Google AdWords campaigns, as you can’t target marijuana commercials on their engines. Last but not least, you won’t be able to register a trademark for a marijuana brand, so the road to big marijuana brands could be a long one.
Before you accuse me of driving the final nail to the coffin, I’d like to reassure you that Cannabis Marketing Agencies will come in handy in dealing with all these issues.
How Can a Cannabis Marketing Agency Help You Overcome these Obstacles?
Be it the Social Media or the website itself, you need valuable content. You know, one that will be as educational as an academic piece of work, and as absorbing as a fantasy best-seller. In the cannabis industry, the role of a marketing agency is to:
- Beat the stoner’s stigma – unfortunately, when most people think of a marijuana billboard, they see a vector graphic of Bob Marley passing a gargantuan joint. The role of cannabis marketing agencies is to make this stereotype and yield to the way cannabis users want to be believed – the true, responsible way. From now on, there will be no terms like ganja, pot, weed, reefer and sticky-icky. Also, phrases like getting ripped, getting bake, or toking up will be razed from your dictionary.
- Educate people – if you have a dispensary, you want to be considered a professional who knows his or her products. A marketing agency will help you display all your strains on your website and share them on cannabis-related portals like Leafly or Canna SOS. And then again, content is of paramount importance, so this is where a blog knocks to your door. You may want to share your ideas in the form of unique, educational and both entertaining, engaging articles with strong data-driven evidence of your product’s health benefits.
- Promote your services legitimately – marijuana marketers should only target people in states where marijuana is legalized. Showing off with your product in a state where even the possession of marijuana is considered a crime? It”s a big no-no. If you’re eager to make your dispensary visible to broader audience (online, in print, on a TV, or at an event), 70% of attendees must be 21 years of age or older. Moreover, you won’t register a marijuana-related trademark or create advertisements on neither Google nor Facebook. Well, it all boils down to what Melanie Rose Rodgers, a Managing Partner at the Denver, Colorado-based marijuana marketing agency Cannabrand told said, “One major challenge our clients face is all the red tape that exists due to marijuana’s federally illegal Schedule I status.”
Now, let us take a look at how to promote this content.
Implementing the Agency’s Strategy
A cannabis marketing agency will presumably come up with three main channels of your content & product promotion:
- SEO – despite the fact that Google AdWords doesn’t allow marijuana-related commercials, the cannabis industry is so young that now is the best time to make an effort and try to land on the podium of a Search Engine. Marketing Agencies know exactly how to do it by targeting the keywords, or by boosting credibility by linking to relevant and valued sources. Every business owner should at least get a grip of basic SEO rules and hire agencies/consultants to incorporate more advanced tactics into the overall strategy.
- Social Media – again, we encounter a problem with ads on Facebook and Instagram, two of the most recognizable social media platforms. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to find a social ninja who will build the image of your brand, get in touch with influencers, and spread the good news across the Social Media communities of patients, because that is how you should treat your audience – like responsible marijuana users. How about maintaining a personal relation with these responsible folks by a newsletter? Since they are a huge part of your business, they will feel delighted when they receive something special from your company.
- Events & conventions – it is a very wise move to show up on one of many marijuana-related conventions. The latest New England Cannabis Convention Boston brought together over 50 businesses and hundreds of attendees; although there were different panels and discussions held there, the majority of the space was taken by vendor booths. Marketing agencies are, least to say, proficient in researching various events.
So… Should I hire a Cannabis Marketing Agency?
Overall, I think the question at the beginning of this text should be “Why should I hire a cannabis marketing agency?” I’ve already introduced you to all benefits that hiring cannabis marketing specialists entails, and I could go down the rabbit hole even further; Instead, to cut the long story short, I should say that in the maze of all these paradoxical legal restrictions, a group of people who know the industry root to branches can do wonders to your business and skyrocket it within a reasonable period of time. All it takes is some legal flexibility, a smooth use of all accessible promotion channels, and – of course – a master plan.
If you have ever smoked marijuana before, you can vividly remember that first huge puff of that joint or hit of that bong. You took a deep breath in anticipation of getting in as much of that herbal goodness as possible, and then it happened. You took too big a hit and your throat feels like it is on fire. Now your throat is raw, you back off from the pipe, and you have a coughing fit until the pain subsides. This scenario plays out today for all those new pot smokers and lives forever in the memories of those veterans who love to tell stories of the days they first got high.
Fast forward to the new pot smokers of this year, and they tell stories of the first time they got high with marijuana consumption. These savvy weed smokers don’t like the smoke associated with marijuana, so rather than compromise the health of their lungs, they have found several other options for getting high. If you are interested in some creative ways to get high without smoking your weed, here are the top 5 methods of marijuana consumption and why you need to try them all.
1. Dabbing Your Weed
Dabbing is not the pose that football players are making after they score a touchdown, dabbing is a creative method of flash-vaporization in which your weed are dropped on a heated water-pipe and inhaled for potent effects.
Attached to the water-pipe is a metallic nail or glass that is heated by way of a butane torch. This has become a very popular marijuana consumption method because that refined concentrate offers users a clean material-free experience. This is certainly a great option for veterans of smoking weed who want to get the power of the weed in their system quickly.
2. Marijuana Vaporizing
Not to be confused with dabbing, you do not need a torch to enjoy the powerful THC benefits. With vaporizing, you are heating the marijuana compounds at a much lower temperature that results is a smoother tasting weed. Much easier on a person’s lungs, the table-top vaporizer offers a nice quality vapor that has advanced temperature settings. These small hand-held vaporizers allow you to smoke your weed on the go, offering you a unique smoke-free way to get high quickly and safely. Of all the marijuana consumption methods, vaporizing is extremely popular today with the new weed smokers. Smoke shops are packed with cool and discreet vaporizers that can slip right in your coat pocket for easy concealment.
3. Weed Edibles
People have been eating weed in one form or another forever. As far back as many pot smokers can recall, they tell tales of baking their weed in brownies and getting baked on those delicious treats. Today, many pot smokers have made the switch to marijuana edibles because it is light on their throat, easy on their lungs, and cheaper than buying a device to heat up your stash. Cannabis-infused foods and drinks are all the rage today, allowing anyone to make your own recipes or simply visit one of a number of dispensaries or retail shops that sell infused lemonade or roasted garlic crackers. Regardless if you are a veteran or a rookie to smoking weed, you must start with a very low dose and be extremely patient. Because everyone has a unique digestive process, these marijuana edibles take longer to kick in and could result in intensely psychoactive effects. Everybody needs to have their limits.
4. Herbal Topical Treatments
Leave it to the potheads to develop a unique way to get all the benefits of smoking weed without actually smoking or eating your stash. If you are not yet familiar with topicals, they simply are cannabis-infused balms and lotions applied directly to your skin for localized relief of soreness, pain, and inflammation. However, that is not the only benefits of these topicals, they can also me used to treat symptoms without all the psychoactive effects you get from smoking, dabbing, or vaporizing your weed. If you must have a clear-headed and need to forgo that euphoric high, topicals are definitely the way to go.
5. Cannabis Ingestible Oils
If you are looking to enjoy the powerful effects of cannabis without smoking, here is another marijuana consumption method you must try to believe. Cannabis ingestible oils are simply any marijuana concentrate taken orally. These usually come in plastic applicators or capsules, and can be consumed as they are or added with your food or drink. Just like the weed edibles, these ingestible oils can induce extremely powerful effects that take just a short while to kick in, so it is very important to be mindful of your dose. There you have it folks, the top 5 methods of marijuana consumption and why you need to try them all! Now that you’re familiar with all the options, pick up the materials you will need and try them all this month.
Having a Cannabis website is much more important than you’d ever thought, there are actually numerous advantages that make having a website more than worth it. First of all, a Cannabis website gets your name out there so that more people can benefit from your products. A high-quality Cannabis website incorporates SEO tactics in order to appear at the top of a Google search, increasing the number of people who see the business and, in turn, increasing profits.
SEO tactics like targeted keywords, link building, content optimization, classified ads, and even social networking drive customers to your Cannabis’s website. Without a cannabis website and without these features, you’d bring in only a small portion of the business you could potentially have.
Another reason to have a cannabis website for your Cannabis Business is to have an edge on the competition in your area. If a person were to search, for example, “dispensaries in Los Angeles” and your dispensary happened to be the only one in Los Angeles to have a professional website, you’d be ahead of every other dispensary around. The Internet is used by nearly everyone to search for nearly every topic, including medical marijuana, so it only makes sense to have a cannabis website.
A cannabis website also shows customers the quality of your business. A well-designed site reflects positively on the professionalism of your Cannabis business, and an updated “menu” with pictures and descriptions of current products makes the company appear even more legitimate–and it’s very convenient for customers, as well.
A high-quality cannabis website design also shows cannabis users and buyers that your Cannabis Business is not just targeted to the typical “stoner.” A top-notch website rebrands cannabis and reframes it as something that anyone is welcome to purchase. It shows website visitors that you’re focused on providing a high-quality product and don’t discriminate against people who don’t fit the stereotypical “stoner” image.
This is important because marijuana is no longer a substance used in secret. It’s used to treat many different illnesses and ailments, and your website should reflect that. Having a professional-looking cannabis website design can make potential users less wary of the substance. Marijuana is now credited with creating jobs and saving lives, and having a website will help to maintain that positive image.
Having a domain name specific to your Cannabis Business is extremely important and beneficial. It brings attraction, credibility, and marketing identity to your business. In short, it’s a huge contributor to business success–especially since marijuana is the fastest growing industry in the United States.
Customers’ opinions of your cannabis website design will often be the first impression they have of your business; people tend to look on the Internet before searching anywhere else. Therefore, if you have a high-quality site, the first impression will be a positive one and you’re almost sure to make a sale–or at least get your name out there.
Cannabis Websites also list important information like location, hours of operation, and ways to contact the business. Social media profiles can be linked to the site for added growth and popularity online. In short, a website is a tool for a Cannabis Business that can bring in business, keep the company ahead of its competitors, fight the stereotypical image of the type of people who smoke marijuana, and aid customers in treating various ailments. Having a website for your Cannabis Business is no longer something that should be treated as an afterthought; it’s a necessary tool for business success.