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Cannabis Industry Challenges in 2022

Cannabis Industry Challenges in 2022

The cannabis industry has continued to accelerate in 2022.

Every sector of our industry from cultivators to product makers to distributors, dispensaries, and consumers hasmarijuana plants been pulling to make cannabis a success. Governments all over the world are taking continuing steps toward legalization. Investors have doubled down on the technology that will make the industry more efficient.

Forbes estimates the total economic impact of cannabis sales in the United States alone was $92 billion, and cannabis industry (and co-founder of Dutchie, a technology platform powering cannabis commercialization) Ross Lipson projects that legal cannabis sales will contribute $160 billion a year to the US economy by 2025. But that depends on the ability of the industry to jump several significant hurdles in 2022.

Cannabis retailers need to update their understanding of their markets

Cannabis consumers are neither dazed nor confused.

Data from cannabis commerce platform Dutchie set the record straight about who cannabis consumers really are.

A survey of 5,000 cannabis consumers in the US found that the majority are women. The majority are also college-educated. They are health-conscious, and they are well informed about the therapeutic potential of legal marijuana.

This means that cannabis retailers need to go beyond basic descriptors in labeling their products. Consumers aren't concerned about the differences between sativa and indica, and they aren't solely interested in THC or CBD.

Cannabis retailers need to spend more effort labeling their products to meet customer expectations of information about terpenoid profile and cannabinoid content. They need to be able to help health-conscious consumers find the product that is right for them.

person using credit card to pay at dispensaryCannabis retailers need to offer a more "normal" shopping experience

Cannabis dispensaries are held back by outdated state and federal regulations that hinder their efforts to provide safe, pleasant, and legally compliant shopping experiences for their customers. This means finding a way to conduct transactions without cash.

Merchant services are still relatively difficult to obtain. Cash has been an industry standard for a long time, and we're still not out of the woods with it yet. However, there are options available for your dispensary so you can more easily accept different types of payment. 

Staffing remains challenging

It's hard to find good help, and it isn't going to get easier in 2022. Many retailers remain in the weeds regarding hiring even several years after legalization.

Here are a few of the challenges.

  • Some of the most knowledgeable potential employees have a criminal record from their time in the informal cannabis trade. They can't be hired, so dispensaries are forced to recruit new employees who don't have in-depth knowledge.
  • It is hard to connect with well-qualified job candidates because of restrictions on social media and advertising. Many job recruiting platforms don't allow postings for jobs in the cannabis industry, either.
  • With very few exceptions, there are no certifications or degrees that can serve as a cannabis sales and service credential.

There are a few ways to get around these problems. Some placement agencies specialize in finding personnel for the cannabis industry. Farm and grocery managers may have skills that transfer to the cannabis industry. But it is still necessary to vet your employees carefully, and provide competitive or better-than-competitive compensation.

Effective digital marketing strategy

The effective use of digital marketing to create a customer base and drive sales is one of the fundamental challenges of the cannabis industry in 2022. Many dispensaries have difficulty using content marketing, local SEO, enterprise SEO, and especially social media for building their Internet presence. These platforms often censor or restrict content with any mention of marijuana, making it near impossible to properly advertise in a modern world. 

Related: Cannabis Marketing Strategies To Grow Your Business

Challenges in finding funding

Cannabis is now considered an essential industry in much of the United States. New opportunities to sell legallyone hundred dollar bills have created a rush for licenses, and stiff competition for reaching consumers.  Cannabis retailers face funding challenges they have never had before.

Even if you have positive cash flow, you need to focus on keeping cash in your pipeline. How do you do that? Do you take on an active partner, who will have a say in how you run your business? Do you take on angel investors, who will be looking for a large share of your equity in your business? If you sell to a multi-state operator (MSO), are you prepared to let them take your cash, as permitted by state laws, to have their own reserve for growth and emergencies?

Or do you really want to have a relationship with a cannabis lender?

Before you begin, any lender is going to expect you to have systems in place that provide up-to-the-minute key performance indicators (KPIs). They're going to want you to have a well-considered business plan, and a team all rowing in the same direction to make it work. You are going to need financial statements and possibly more.

Cannabis Financing can help you secure the capital you need to start your business, buy your building, finance your equipment, and more. We will connect you with trusted lenders so you always know that you and your business are in good hands. You can get pre-approved within 48 hours, so get started today!

Posted by Canna Business Team



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In an industry that is constantly evolving, Canna Business Financing provides business owners with a reliable source to gather the most up-to-date information. From resources to fund the growth of your business to insights on best practices to scale, look no further!

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