Despite the burgeoning demand for legal cannabis, whether for medical or adult use, trying to make money from it remains a tricky proposition. Its unique semi-legal status (tax code 280E), plus the challenges of branding and differentiating when advertising opportunities are limited, all conspire against entrepreneurs, and dispensary owners in particular. Enter Baker, a Denver-based software company that helps more than 300 dispensaries in 10 states through its smart applications for online ordering, customer retention and personalized messaging.
Through a research partnership, New Frontier Data has been able to gauge online ordering habits and loyalty data collected by Baker in key US markets, including California, Oregon, Colorado, New Mexico and Washington, as well as the Canadian provinces of Ontario and British Columbia. Notably, these data include the demographics of those consumers who account for 80 percent of the dispensaries’ overall revenue and represent the “power users”—i.e., the most influential group in driving demand and shaping consumer trends.
Among the trends noted in New Frontier Data’s recent “Cannabis Industry Annual Report: 2017 Legal Marijuana Outlook” is the declining relative popularity of flower against other product types. Certainly, cannabis flower remains the single largest source of revenue for dispensaries. In medical markets, for example, flower makes up 47 percent of total sales volume, but it accounts for 71 percent of total revenue generated. In contrast, pre-rolled joints account for 13 percent of total sales volume but only 2 percent of total revenue.