How to Start a Successful CBD & Hemp Retail Business

How to start a successful retail CBD and Hemp Business

The CBD industry is going mainstream in the United States and is growing exponentially. Experts estimate that CBD sales in the U.S will exceed an incredible $20 billion by the beginning of 2024, so now is the perfect time to open a CBD business. The industry is going from strong to stronger as recent changes in legislation have contributed to the dispersion of stigmas surrounding the hemp plant and CBD products and allowing the products to be accepted and gobbled up by the general public. Strike while the iron is hot! And right now its heating up!

This step-by-step guide will tell you everything you need to know about how to sell CBD and help you get started opening a CBD store of your very own.

Step 1. Go with a CBD Franchise or Create your Own CBD Brand Name

You're probably not surprised to find out that the hard work begins well before you open your business's doors to the public. One of the first things you'll have to do is decide whether you're going to create your own CBD brand or open a CBD franchise store.

If you're planning on creating your own brand, you'll have a lot more work to do. Whereas if you decide to opt for opening a franchise, a lot of the hard work has been taken care of for you. Trust in a brand's identity and supply chain issues won't be of concern to you when opening a franchise. Opening a franchise gives you the independence of opening a small business but with the benefits of a large business's network and resources.

Hemp Geek is a good example of a franchise model. By becoming a franchisee, you gain access to use of the company's trademark, ongoing support from the franchiser, and the ability to sell their top-quality goods.

Step 2. Sourcing Wholesale CBD Products

Where are you going to buy your wholesale cbd products from? It's vital for all CBD businesses to have a consistent source of top-quality products. This can only be achieved by working with a reputable provider. HempWholesaler.com is an industry-leading provider of all things related to CBD and Hemp. We carry the widest selection of CBD brands and products anywhere and boast an impressive range of products that are constantly updating. The team at HempWholesaler.com are experts in helping start-ups furnish their store with all they need to flourish. Also, HempWholesaler.com can also finance inventory purchases for buyers who meet their requirements and who are looking to buy CBD products for their store.

Step 3. High-Quality Signage

High-quality signage is a must for any new CBD business. Don't cheap out on a sign as it's one of the first things a potential customer will see. It's a cost-effective marketing tool that helps create a positive first impression and landmarks your business in the area. Bright lights are the best as they're eye-catching and help to relay important information to your customers about what products you provide.

Step 4. Retail Displays & Layouts

The interior of your store needs to look as great as your brand-new signage. Considering it's the first impression of your store, you want it to be aesthetically pleasing and conducive to making a sale! There are many layout design services out there that can assist in building a truly one-of-a-kind retail layout or use stock ready to ship inexpensive displays that can be found online like this one here 5ft. Glass Display Cabinet - with Sliding Door, Height-Adjustable Shelves - Anodized Aluminum Extrusions With Black Melamine PanelsThere's so many options for displays from inline LED strip lighting to custom wood displays. As far as in-store marketing material goes, we here at HempWholesaler.com send out CBD Brand Swag like posters, brochures, shirts, hats, displays  and other promo items and in store marketing materials with just about every purchases! 

Step 5. Filing and LLC and other Legal Work

Filing an LLC and starting a business is easy now-a-days! Using a company such as Legal Zoom can help you get your business legally prepared to open with minimum effort and expenditure on your behalf. It's a cheaper alternative to hiring a lawyer and is just as effective. Filing an LLC is important and is definitely something you should consider doing sooner rather than later.

Step 6. Location, Location, Location

One of the most important aspects of opening a store is where you're going to open it. If it's in the middle of nowhere or on the outskirts of your city, you may struggle to keep it open. As people from all walks of life are using CBD products, you should focus on an area with high foot traffic, preferably in a plaza with an anchor store or in an area of high retail traffic. As they say, location is everything in business. 

Choosing the right area is only the first step of finding your perfect retail location to open a CBD store. The physical location may seem right, but what about competition in the area? If there are a ton of CBD stores near you, you'll have to give it some serious thought about whether this will help or hinder your business.

Other questions you should ask include:

Is there parking for staff and customers?

How easy is it to access?

Is it visible from the road or is it tucked away from everything?

When you've considered these factors, the last thing to consider is the size of any available units. If it's too small, you could be losing out on revenue from being unable to stock a full range of products. If it's too large, your rental fees may be far greater than your initial profit and your business may sink as a result of this. Finding a retail unit that's the right size is a keep aspect of opening a CBD store.

Step 7. Advertising

Local radio stations are definitely your most effective means of advertising your CBD store. Local radio equals local listeners, and most people like checking out a new store that's just opened in their area. Unfortunately, Facebook and Google don't accept ads for CBD-related businesses, so instead you must opt for more traditional means of advertising your new CBD business.

Step 8. Grand Opening Promotions

Ready to open? Want a ton of free advertising? Throw a grand opening event and contact the local news. They'll make a story out of the opening and will get the attention of tons of new potential customers!

There's no better way to entice customers into a new store than with promotions. Small discounts or a free low-value product when you X amount of money is spent, are both great ways of getting people to make a purchase.

One of the best ways of converting one-time customers into returning customers is with a loyalty program. Whether you decide to implement a points program, a spend program, or even a paid-for VIP program, you'll notice an increase in regular customers that's guaranteed to boost your business's turnover.

Step 9. Get Your CBD Business Listed on Google and Apple Maps

Making your business easily discoverable by registering for Google Maps and Apple Maps helps people track you down more easily. It can also help drive customers your way who may not have known of your existence. For example, if someone was to search for "CBD store" while using Google or Apple Maps, your business will pop up to them and they could decide you're the store for them. To get listed on Apple maps go to https://mapsconnect.apple.com/ and to list your business on google maps go to https://www.google.com/business/

Step 10. Create a Rockin' Social Media Presence

A social media presence is a must for local businesses. Creating Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter profiles can help you to stay fresh in the mind of locals and attract them to your store. By sharing meaningful content and information regarding any special discounts or offers your business has, you can ensure your social media accounts will gain traction with locals.

Step 11. Prioritize Customer Service

Ensuring your customers leave your store happier than when they come in a vital part of retail. Providing customers with a positive experience can help your store stand out as well as benefit from one of the most important forms of advertising that money simply can't buy - word of mouth recommendations.

Customers are the foundation of your business's success, so it makes sense to keep them as happy as possible. Answer questions, make recommendations, provide a service with a smile and you'll have customers flocking to your new CBD store.

Step 12. Competitively Price Your Products

If you're pricing things to high, they simply won't sell. Price them too low, however, and you run the risk of not being able to afford business-related expenditures thanks to having a low profit margin. The key is to price things in a manner where you still make a comfortable profit on each sale, but where you're not the most expensive option in your area.

These days, people are looking to save as much money as possible and won't hesitate to go elsewhere or shop online if they feel your prices are too steep. If there are other CBD stores in your area, it may be worth paying them a visit so you can gauge how much they're selling their products for.

Step 13. Only Hire Knowledgeable Staff

There's nothing worse than asking a question and not getting a direct answer. Hiring staff who know the ins and outs of CBD is essential for any new CBD retail business. In an industry as complex as CBD, it's likely that virtually every customer will have questions to ask, and by having staff who know the products inside out, you can increase the strength of your brand's identity and the relationship with customers.

Step 14. Creative Marketing is Crucial

Creative marketing is so much more than just making your customers smile, it's a way of shaping your business's identity and helping it stick in the minds of local residents. Taking a creative approach to marketing your CBD business can have a big impact on your business in the long run. It's safe to say, when it comes to marketing, it pays off to be creative. Do something that will stick in the mind of potential customers and ensure that your store will be the first name that comes to mind whenever they hear CBD.

With the help of this guide, you should be well on your way to knowing how to open your own CBD store. It's a long road and it's guaranteed to be a challenge, but the feeling of satisfaction you get when your customers tell you how much your products help them will be more than enough of a reward.

Step 15. Let us Help!

HempWholesaler.com is not only here to provide the best selection of wholesale CBD products at the guaranteed lowest distributor pricing... but also to offer any sort of assistance and help you may need in opening your store, choosing products, choosing an initial order, deciphering CBD lingo or any other issues or opportunities that may arise. Your success means our success... and we want to succeed! Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns!


Clifford Hurley

Journalist, professional researcher and CBD enthusiast

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