Top 10 things to think about when opening a marijuana dispensary

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A lot of people are interested in getting into the marijuana movement that is taking shape around America currently by opening a marijuana dispensary. The industry is reportedly expected to grow from over $20 billion in 2020 to $50 billion by 2026. With figures like these, you can see why there are so many people entering the marijuana market. One such way is to open up a marijuana retail dispensary.

More than half of all American states have liberalized ether their medical or recreational marijuana laws. California in January legalized marijuana for recreational use by adults and have an established medical marijuana industry that has been evolving since 1996. Buying pot in California is as easy as buying a beer now. States like Colorado and California that have legalized recreational cannabis are trailblazing new frontiers in the cannabis industry. California and Colorado generated just under $10 billion of legal marijuana sales in 2017.

With figures like these and a growing demand for quality pot products and ever-growing public support. Starting a marijuana retail dispensary could be a great way to start a new career, enter a dynamic cannabis industry, provide jobs, support your community and generate good income. We will discuss 10 points to think about when considering to open a marijuana retail dispensary.


1 – Marijuana Laws

Cannabis laws are one of your most important considerations to take before opening a marijuana dispensary. Some weed-legal states don’t allow retail marijuana sales such as Alaska and Hawaii while other states like California require people to acquire the correct permits in their state and jurisdiction. You really do need to stay ahead of the game when it comes to legal cannabis laws and regulations, this will help you keep the edge over opening a legitimate business.


2 – Grow Location

Location, location, location is your most important factor when considering open a medical retail dispensary. Firstly if you are relying on a lot of foot traffic, or a shop front on the main street, you might be in for some hard work to find that location. You will need to seek out a location that complies with local, state and federal zoning laws.


3 – Cannabis Consultants

All of this is not achievable by yourself. Looking at hiring a large team of specialized consultants would be a good idea to help you get out the starting block faster. Lawyers, IT consultants, marketing and promotion agencies, state agencies, human resource firms, amongst others would be good to hire for sound business advice, products and services.


4 – Business Plan

A goal of starting a business is not an easy task and drawing up a comprehensive business plan will help you gauge your strengths and weaknesses. It will further give you a better understanding of your objectives, strategies and goals for running a successful cannabis business in a new industry.


5 – Finances

Starting a cannabis business is not inexpensive. You will need to take into account the many restrictions placed on cannabis businesses transacting locally and nationally. Most banks do not offer loans or credit facilities to business in the cannabis industry. Starting a new business is a very expensive endeavour and requires a lot of financial planning and future cash flows to sustain itself. Startup investments of opening a marijuana retail dispensary can vary from $250000 to over $500000.


6 – Marketing

What is the point of starting a business without letting people know that you offer a unique product or service? A marketing plan forms part of your business plan and is important to follow for you to establish your brand in the market. There is a huge influx of capital into the cannabis industry and many people are fighting for a seat at the table to reap the rewards of a new exciting industry.


7 – Become Marijuana

Cannabis is not such a simple plant. With all the developments and legal changes, cannabis is one of the most fast-paced industries in the world. New technologies are developing more potent and higher quality cannabis products such as in concentrates. The is little margin for error and knowing your cannabis products well goes without saying. You will need to have a good understanding of the difference between well-grown cannabis and badly grown cannabis as well as the different varieties of cannabis strains and concentrates. Information is power and knowing your product well gives you more confidence in what you are selling.


8 – Attend Trade Shows and Events

Its important to network in any industry and more so in cannabis. Cannabis is changing rapidly from many angles and staying on top of new developments, product launches or just meeting other cannabis friendly business owners is key. Attending cannabis events can also be part of your own marketing plan if you consider exhibiting your products or brand for potential customers.


9 – Keep on top of it

Keeping your head above the water line will be hard. But with a lot of vision and hard work you will be able to sustain yourself if you can pass the first 6 months of operation. Updating your business plan as you blaze a new trail in the cannabis industry is an important way for you to set milestones for yourself and reflect on past strategies and data.


10 – POS that helps you

Tying most of these important points up would be to investing in a great point-of-sale ( POS ) system that you can use to make you’re day-to-day easier and monthly reporting a breeze. POS systems allow you to take advantage of technology a compliant, legal and effective system will allow you to have better control over your business and help you transact, document and manage your inventory through a simple interface.

Well, I hope the points I have made in the article have given you a few good answers to consider before you start your own marijuana retail dispensary. I wish you all the best cannabusiness success.

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