Dispensary CRM Software

When it comes to your cannabis business, there’s nothing more important than building, cultivating, and maintaining relationships with your customers. Relationships are everything!

The more effective your cannabis business or dispensary is at managing relationships with your customers, the more successful your business will become. Effective relationship management helps you build a one-to-one relationship with each of your customers while building loyalty, increasing the lifetime value of your client base, and attracting more customers through word-of-mouth and referrals.

It’s become axiomatic that essentially every business that’s involved in sales needs a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solution. Without a CRM solution, it’s incredibly difficult to stay on top of your business and maintain mutually beneficial and profitable relationships.

This guide outlines the business benefits and the potential drawbacks of implementing CRM. It also offers help on the types of solution you can choose and how to implement them.

  • What Is CRM?
  • What Is Cannabis Dispensary CRM and How Does It Differ From CRM for Other Industries?
  • Business Benefits of Cannabis Dispensary CRM
  • Questions to Ask Potential Cannabis Dispensary CRM Solution Providers
  • Next Steps

What is CRM?

Most business owners have heard the term CRM (Customer Relationship Management). CRM is more than a technology, though. It’s also a key component of your sales, marketing, and promotional strategy. It helps you learn and better understand your customers’ wants, needs, desires, and behaviors and allows you to develop stronger relationships with them.

From a technological perspective, CRM is a software platform (usually cloud-based) that allows you to manage every interaction you have with your customers and prospective customers. A CRM allows you to capture key data on your customers. For example, a few data points you can capture include their name and contact information, their birthdate (great for sending out thank you messages and personalized birthday promotions), how often they visit your business, and what their favorite products are.

A good CRM incorporates marketing and promotion tools either natively or through third-party applications, such as email marketing and SMS/text-message capabilities. Reputable CRM systems also usually integrate with your eCommerce and online ordering, inventory management, order entry systems, point of sale (POS), processing, quality assurance (QA), and warehousing systems, many of which have been designed specifically for cannabis dispensaries.

CRM will also provide visibility into your sales and marketing programs, such as what’s working and what’s not, allowing you to iterate and continually refine and improve your sales and marketing efforts while providing an easy way to measure ROI (return-on-investment).

From a strategic perspective, CRM is much more than just another technology. Ultimately, your CRM solution reflects your business philosophy and sales and marketing strategy. It is the heart of your business.

What Is Cannabis Dispensary CRM?

The cannabis industry is incredibly unique — and incredibly regulated. Consequently, most dispensaries use CRM solutions that were created specifically for the cannabis industry.

Cannabis dispensary owners are subjected to a voluminous amount of paperwork, bureaucracy, red tape, and regulations that are virtually impossible to keep up on and navigate without a CRM solution designed for the cannabis industry.

Think about it. Think of how tightly regulated the cannabis industry is: From seed-to-sale, every step must be tracked to maintain compliance. In many states, including the biggest markets like California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington, the entire supply chain — from growers, producers, and warehouses to labs and dispensaries — is required to provide the state and even local municipalities with comprehensive reports that provide details on a business’s relationships with their customers and suppliers, as well as granular details on sales and production.

Any good cannabis CRM solution must provide custom tailored reporting and data tracking features to ensure dispensaries can maintain compliance with incredibly diverse and variable state and local regulations. Predictably, given the uniqueness of the cannabis industry, none of the big players in CRM (like Salesforce, Oracle, SugarCRM) have developed solutions that meet the needs of cannabis businesses. Virtually every popular CRM in the cannabis industry was developed by businesses, startups, and insiders with deep experience in the industry.

The cannabis dispensary CRM space has been growing quickly over the last few years. Below is a list of the leading companies in the space:

Benefits of a Cannabis Dispensary CRM Solution

We’ve touched on some of the benefits of CRM and the reasons why you need one. Below is a concise list of the key benefits and reasons why you want to make a serious commitment to your CRM.

  • Maintain direct contact with your customers and build a one-to-one relationship
  • Build customer loyalty and convert casual customers into repeat customers
  • Improve and accelerate marketing convergence and integration
  • Drive more sales and foot traffic with personalized promotions, offers, and incentives
  • Streamline business operations and compliance
  • Save time and improve the efficiency of record keeping, data collection, and other systems (like integration with your online ordering or online menu system)
  • Track and measure ROI so that you know what’s working, what’s not, and how you can improve
  • Use analytics to gain insights into customer behaviors that will help you craft unique promotional offers

Questions to Ask Potential Cannabis Dispensary CRM Solution Providers

It should be obvious that sourcing and implementing CRM is something that every dispensary owner needs to take seriously and put plenty of thought into. However, CRM is a big investment with potential costs that extend far beyond what your solution provider charges. If you choose the wrong system, use your system incorrectly, or fail to train stakeholders, you’ll be leaving money on the table. Or, worse, you could make a costly mistake. Therefore, it’s critical to choose your solution provider carefully.

Here are some questions you can ask potential dispensary solution providers as you evaluate your options:

  • Was your CRM developed specifically for the cannabis industry or was it adapted from another industry? (If the latter, what steps did you take to ensure your solution addresses the unique environment of the cannabis industry?)
  • How long have you been in business? How long have you been offering your CRM to dispensaries?
  • What is your pricing model? (One-off purchase | Annually, quarterly, monthly licensing fees | Charge per user)
  • What is the Total Cost of Ownership for your solution? What hidden or potentially unanticipated costs may we incur after implementing your CRM? (Are there additional fees for training, onboarding, implementation, etc. | Are there additional charges for consulting and technical support)
  • Who are some of your big customers? Can you provide 3 references I can speak to who have similar business models as we do?
  • Who are your key partners?
  • How scalable is your system as our dispensary grows? What happens as we add new locations?
  • What third-party developers do you work with for integrations and other functionality? What third-party developers do you recommend?
  • What training is available for my team?

Preferred Partner

Connect with our team

As the largest digital marketing agency for cannabis dispensaries, MediaJel has developed relationships with the leading cannabis dispensary solution providers. If you need help in identifying a solution, feel free to use the contact form below to reach out. We’d be happy to help you!

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Let’s take an in-depth look at each digital marketing channel.

Given the unique position of the cannabis industry, we’re only covering the digital marketing channels that are permitted to use by ancillary businesses, brands, dispensary owners, mobile applications, producers, processors, and websites. There is a legal gray area when marketing cannabis companies, and you should regularly reference the laws within your state before starting any campaign.