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Create your own CBD brand by private labeling, wholesaling, or affiliate marketing. Learn how to start a cbd business today! Wondering how to start a CBD or cannabis business? Find out how to take advantage of CBD business opportunities in the booming CBD industry. Considering starting a CBD business? Learn everything you need to know to launch a successful online CBD store.

Learn How To Start A CBD Business in 2022

If you want to create your own CBD brand, sell CBD product in your store or boutique, or even if you just want to earn a commission by promoting other people’s (or company’s) CBD products. then this is the most important blog article you’ll read. Ever!

Because in today’s cannabis world, CBD is a billion dollar industry that anyone can enter and make millions with little to no money, licenses, experience. I want to show you how.

My name is Cory Holmes and I am the founder of Holmes Organics, a wellness brand that offers CBD products. We offer products from CBD Oil, Softgels, and Gummies… to even CBD doggy treats.

This blog/course will teach you how to start a cbd business in 2022!

Every day you wait is another day the other people and companies are making money in the CBD industry while you DON’T!

In Fact, Here’s Just The Tip of The Iceberg of What You Get.

  • You’ll discover exactly 3 different business models on how to earn money in today’s CBD market. Which you can literally start in 30 days or less.
  • You’ll understand exactly how to structure an entity for your CBD businesses.
  • You’ll skip past most of the mistakes and obstacles that stop MOST cannabis startup business owners from competing in the CBD industry.
  • You’ll know exactly how to build a money making CBD e-commerce website that literally makes you money while you sleep.
  • You’ll understand how to choose the right distributor of your CBD Products
  • You’ll have access to insider information and personal business contacts for high risk banking and credit card processing.
  • You will learn the best selling CBD Products that will make you the most money in a short amount of time.
  • You’ll even learn marketing secrets to getting your business and services in front of millions of people.
  • And much more.

Be sure to follow this blog/course from start to finish and implement everything you learn immediately. Before you know it, you’ll be competing in a billion dollar industry. Good luck.

Step 1: Educating Yourself On Cannabis Industry

This is extremely important. You can’t just start selling products without being knowledgable about them. CBD is no different. In fact, you need to strive to know everything and the Cannabis industry.

Currently the government is working diligently to get laws in place for the industry so you need to stay current. Below are helpful resources.

Know The Law

  • Do NOT sell any CBD products that has more than 0.3% of THC
  • Third Party LabTesting is Essential
  • Do NOT make any medical claims
  • It’s advised to have transparent labels and packaging
  • Please consult a lawyer

Valuable Resources

M4MM INDIVIDUAL/START UP BUSINESS MEMBERSHIP- $100 YEARLY

  • Membership Certificate
  • Free admission to dice networking mixer
  • Business logo on the M4MM website
  • 1 hour complimentary business consultation
  • Member of the week social media posting
  • Monthly virtual membership meeting

CANNABIS BUSINESS NEWS & TIPS

  • Get the latest news on the cannabis industry
  • Business advice, jobs, and more ideas
  • Excellent marketing opportunities

CANNABIS BUSINESS NEWS & TIPS

Aimed at those interested in investment, entrepreneurship and changing careers, the workbook uses guided exercises to help committed readers develop personalized plans for success.

CBD BLOG

  • Top hem CBD blog site in the USA
  • New updates daily
  • Product reviews
  • Marketing Platform

CBD WELLNESS BLOG

Visit the Holmes Organics blog today for the latest information about CBD products, news, information, resources, recipes, business,
and wellness.

AUDIOBOOK LIBRARY

  • Tons of books on CBD and cannabis
  • Reasonably priced membership
  • You can’t wrong investing in yourself. Books have millions of dollars worth of information

Step 2: Top 3 CBD Businesses You Can Start NOW

Have you ever wanted the opportunity to start your own brand? What about your own brand in a billion dollar industry with no clear market leader at the moment? This is the chance of a lifetime to get in early and establish yourself as the brand of choice for CBD products.

You will be doing the same thing as people like Rihanna and Kylie Jenner ..finding a distributor and putting YOUR BRAND on the label.

You may be wondering.

  • What’s the cost of owning your own brand?
  • Who do I buy product from?
  • Do I need a license?

Well read further for the answers.

Affiliate Marketing

The Free Business Model

  • All you need is a URL
  • Your Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Or Your Website
  • Promote reputable CBD companies for a commission
  • Sometimes up to 40%!!
  • Easy Sale
  • It’s easy to sell products that help people
  • Cookie System
  • 60 and 90 day cookies
  • Keep earning money from the same person over and over with little to no advertising

Reputable CBD Affiliate Programs

Wholesale CBD

The Inexpensive Business Model

  • Fast start for as little as $250
  • Buy at 50%-60% of retail pricing.
  • Sell at whatever price you want
  • Sell as many brands you want
  • Mix CBD with your current products and services
  • Sell in your shops, restaurants, farmer’s market, trade shows

Private Label CBD

Why You Should Own Your Own CBD Brand?

  • It’s relatively inexpensive to start. as little as $2500
  • You can play ball with the bigger brands. and win
  • You’re in control
  • Gain recognition
  • You’re known as the expert
  • Change people’s lives
  • No licenses required

Step 3: Setting Up Your CBD Business Structure

Structuring your business is not as hard as you may think. In fact, it can be done in a very short amount of time without spending a lot of money. You’ll want to follow these steps to make sure you don’t hit any annoying roadblocks down the line with things such as banking and credit card processing.

Name Your Company

Your brand’s name is everything! You need to make sure you choose a name that’s easy to remember, differentiate yourself from all of other CBD companies. Your name needs to be able to withstand the test of time.

Study your competitor’s names to get a better idea of what or what not to name your company. Avoid using words like “Hemp”, “CBD”, “Cannabis”,”Canna” or any similar words in your name. You’re going to put your company in a box and not stand out as much. You could also run into issues with getting a bank to let you open up a business account. More on banking later on in this chapter.

Once you have your name, you’ll want to trademark it. Check the U.S. Patent and Trade Office for any marks on your chosen name. If there aren’t any, it is best that you contact a Patent Attorney. If you find that your chosen name has a mark, then you’re shit out of luck. Choose another name so your can avoid any lawsuits down the road.

Take a day or two to think on it. Also ask your friends and family and get their opinions on a name.

Set Up Your Business Entity

  • Visit your Secretary Of State’s website
  • Legal Zoom is a great option!
  • Speak with an attorney

Receive Your Employee ID Number

  • Apply for your EIN online
  • IT’S FREE!

Purchase Your Corporate Domain And Email Address

  • Use a “.com” preferably. Do not use @gmail.com, @yahoo.com, @hotmail.com
  • Use SiteGround, G-Suite, Host Gator, Blue Host, or GoDaddy
  • Example: “[email protected]

Set Up Business Bank Account

Bypass a bank all together and find a CBD friendly local credit union.

Documents needed to open your CBD business account:

  • Articles of incorporation/ organization
  • EIN number
  • Operating agreement
  • Visit Law Depot For A Free Operating Agreement

WARNING: BE CAREFUL ABOUT MENTIONING YOUR CBD BUSINESS TO YOUR BANK. THEY MIGHT TELL YOU TO TAKE ALL OF YOUR BANKING ELSEWHERE.

Business Phone Number

Use Google Voice for a FREE business phone number.

  • FREE real phone number from Google
  • You can send text, phone calls , and voicemail
  • You can also use with your current smart phone

Business Address

If you’re starting an E-Commerce business, you can purchase a virtual business address for as little as $10/month.

Listing Services

Clients and other professionals often search for reviews through listing services such as “Yelp”.
Below are four listing services to register your business for.

Step 4: Designing CBD Merchant & FDA Compliant Website

Let’s build a strong backend that can handle traffic, process transactions , and grow your online presence. If you don’t get this right, then there’s a possibility that your store could lose the ability to make money online. This means that your credit card processing will deactivate after the first transaction is made and you won’t be able to take orders.

Important Website Must Haves

There are a number of requirements that must be on your website before you can be granted a high risk credit card merchant account. Here’s a list of them all:

  • Your website name and business name must be exactly the same or closely match.
  • DO NOT list Stripe or PayPal as a payment method. At the time of this writing, neither Stripe or Paypal approves CBD transactions.
  • You must specify your shipping methods and timeframes.
  • You must have a registered domain.
  • Your website must be SSL secure. For example your website should read “https://yourwebsite.com”. The HTTPS is important. There should also be a green lock in front of the URL.
  • If you offer pet products, they must be in a separate category from your other products. They can not be listed on the same page as your non-pet products.
  • All products must list:
    • Price
    • Description
    • Pictures of labels with ingredients visible
    • Terms & Conditions
    • Refund Policy
    • Privacy Policy

    Choose Your Shopping Cart Wisely

    Your website’s shopping cart solution is also extremely important. You can use Shopify but DO NOT USE Shopify’s shopping cart, “Shopify Payments”. They will shut down your credit card processing. You may now be thinking, “Well, I can just use PayPal.”. Nope. Once PayPal finds out that you are taking orders for CBD products, they will shut you down.

    Use Plug And Play Templates

    Creating your website has never been easier than it is today. even if you’re not a technical person. Gone are the days of spending tens of thousands of dollars to hire someone to build your website, which might take over a month to complete. There are free or inexpensive platforms like Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress that allow you to utilize plug and play templates to build your website in hours.

    I recommend using the WordPress platform because it gives you a ton of flexibility for cheap. You’re going to need that flexibility to navigate around the pitfalls of setting up your shopping cart and credit card processing.

    WordPress also allows you to download themes. But a lot of them are not intuitive to use. My theme builder of choice is Elementor which you get for FREE.

    Pictures Are Worth A Thousand Words

    You should definitely have pictures of your products as well as lifestyle photos on your webpage. Use professional 3D renderings for your online store’s shop page for a more professional look.

    A Nice And Simple Logo

    Your logo is usually the first thing people see when they reach your website. So it should be easy to read font with a simple design that describes your name and brand. Use platforms live Fiverr, Upwork, or my favorite Tailor Brands for quick and affordable logos for under $10.

    Copywriting Is Everything

    Copywriting is extremely critical to your website’s ability to convert. If you want to drive your website viewers from click to close, then you MUST master this skill. To further drive home the importance of copywriting, professional copywriters can command at least $10,000 per page on your website. It’s important!

    You may be thinking, “what is copywriting and where do you use it?” In simple terms, copywriting is words that sell a product or service that you offer.

    Copywriting can be used on the following:

    • All of the pages on your website.
    • Social media posts
    • Email marketing campaign
    • Social Media Ads (If social media platforms ever approve CBD ads)
    • Youtube Videos
    • And much more

    There are plenty of things to write about when creating your copy.

    I want you to focus on 6:

    • Grab attention with a bold headline.
    • Identify the problem your CBD products will solve.
    • Identify the solution to the problem.
    • Provide proof on why your products will solve the problem.
    • Show the benefits in using your CBD products over others.
    • Provide Testimonials to show that your products have helped others.

    Study the copy techniques of large companies like Bose or Apple. If you can create persuasive copy for your website, you’ll will experience constant sales transactions.

    Step 5: Choosing The Right CBD Partner (Wholesale & Private Label)

    Choosing the right partner is crucial your longevity in business. The CBD market is booming and there are lots of companies fighting for market share in the space. There are also lots of companies that offer low quality products and are not operating with integrity. You want to do your due diligence and vet companies and their products thoroughly before you partner with them. The quickest way to fail in your CBD business is to offer low quality products and services.

    You will soon realize that the CBD industry is highly unregulated so you need to try products from various companies. You also want to pay attention to their processes and customer service.

    Here are 5 main factors to consider when choosing your CBD distributor.

    • Choose a high-quality product
    • Choose a company with great service
    • Choose a company that fits with your standards
    • Choose a company with logical pricing and product selection.
    • Choose a company with great marketing support.

    View for more information:

    Step 6: CBD Banking & High Risk Credit Card Processing

    Without the ability to process credit card payments, your CBD business will be limited. But things are so bad in the industry right now that small businesses are choosing to risk it all to process credit cards in a way that could shut their business down for good.

    This topic is definitely a topic you want to stay up-to-date on. daily!

    You must have special merchant processing to take payments for your CBD business.

    Banks & Credit Unions

    Be extremely careful when opening up a bank account with your current bank. Do NOT tell them you’re in the CBD business. If they find out then they will close ALL your accounts and tell you to take your banking elsewhere.

    I recommend using a credit union. Some of them are CBD friendly due to the fact that don’t have to follow FDIC rules.

    NO PayPal or Stripe

    Paypal and Stripe are NOT CBD friendly. If they find out you’re processing CBD product, they will close your accounts.

    Top 4 Credit Card Merchant Processors

    • Startup friendly
    • Lowest rates in the industry
    • Use of Square’s Free Swipe
    • Startup friendly
    • Integrates w/ Shopify
    • Custom pricing for each merchant
    • Startup friendly
    • A+ BBB Rating

    Step 7: Marketing Your CBD Business

    So you’ve set up your business and now you’re ready to start making sales. The real work begins now. Marketing your CBD brand will be a huge challenge in itself. You’ll have to get really creative but there are ways to get your products in front of eyeballs without a huge financial commitment.

    Let’s discuss what NOT to do first.

    You Can’t Use These Popular Marketing Strategies

    FB/IG ADS

    • Facebook is NOT cannabis friendly
    • If you try to create ads, they will “red flag” your business
    • You run the risk of your Ad account being shut down
    • You CAN create posts, stories, videos

    AMAZON

    • Also NOT Cannabis friendly
    • Your ARE allowed to sell CBD but your labels CANNOT say “CBD” anywhere
    • Your labels and descriptions should read “Hemp Extract”

    Top Ways To Market Your CBD Brand

    Word Of Mouth

    • An endorsement from a single person can bring lots of attention/ sales
    • People believe follow what they see. If one person they trust gives the “OK”, then other people are willing to try
    • If your product works, then word can spread
    • Start an informational blog or vlog
    • YouTube, Facebook Live, IG stories are great ways to market your business
    • Have links to your brand and website in your content
    • Choose expos that fit your target market
    • Allows for face to face interaction
    • Leverage other people’s large following to boost your brand for a cheap price
    • Focus on “micro Influencers”
    • The easiest way to may a quick $1000+ in one day
    • Send out email blast to your audience about sales and information
    • The most cost effective email solution we’ve found (and use) is called MailerLite. You can create landing pages, email campaigns, list segmentation, automation, etc. starting at $0.

    Step 8: Drop Shipping CBD Products

    Drop shipping your products can save you lots of time and money. It’s also away to provide a consistent shipping experience for your customer. Now you can focus on building a scalable business while possible working less. Automated Passive Income.

    Here’s a couple of solutions for you:

    • Start with as little as $5/month plus shipping costs(which your customers can pay)
    • 2 Day Shipping
    • Fulfill Order 7 days a week
    • Integrates with major ecommerce platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce

    There are four major requirements for joining the Joy Organics Partners’ Fulfillment Program:

    How to Start a CBD Business: Navigating the CBD Industry

    If you’re wondering how to start a CBD business, you’re not alone. The CBD industry has exploded in growth in recent years, sparking interest in entrepreneurs to get into the CBD business. Truthfully, the cannabis market is growing fast and strong. Given this, now is a great time to start a CBD business. In this article, we’ll discuss what CBD is and take you through a step-by-step approach to breaking out in the industry and making the most of CBD business opportunities. Read on to discover how to start a CBD business online.

    How to Get Into the CBD Business

    According to BDSA, the market for CBD is expected to grow to $20 billion in sales by 2024. That makes it one of fastest growing segments in the cannabis and hemp industry. To get into CBD business opportunities, you must first learn about cannabinoids. Understanding what they are and how they’re used in products will help you sell them better to your customers. Then, you must consider all of the business aspects that go into running a successful CBD business.

    What exactly is CBD?

    CBD is one of the compounds found In cannabis and hemp plants. These compounds are named cannabinoids and there are a lot of them, more than 100 cannabinoids in fact. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the best known cannabinoid due to its intoxicating effects. CBD, however, does not have this psychoactive effect and offers multitudes of potentially therapeutic and health benefits. Research into its medical applications is still ongoing. To create CBD products, there are several steps that must happen. We’ll discuss this later on.

    How it differs from hemp or cannabis

    As you now know, CBD is one of the compounds in hemp and cannabis plants. You can extract CBD oil from these plants to create CBD oil products. The difference is hemp has less than 0.3% THC, so it’s legal to cultivate, harvest, and process it to make products in the U.S. Cannabis has more than 0.3% THC and is illegal on a federal level.

    What Projections Say About New CBD Business Opportunities

    The CBD industry has been growing in popularity since 2016. The number of US CBD consumers went from 2.6% to 4.8% in 2018. Many consider this the breakout year for CBD. Whether it be due to the pandemic and people working from home or simply entrepreneurs trying to get a piece of the pie, the CBD industry is hot.

    Despite the modern CBD industry being relatively young, it’s a highly profitable space. Grand View Research found that the industry as a whole was valued at $4.6 billion in 2018, and it’s only gone up from there. With loosening restrictions and new forms of consumption that CBD businesses can expand into, the industry has had a compound annual growth rate of about 22.2%. These figures just go to show how now is an ideal time to start a CBD business. But where should you start?

    How to Start a CBD Business in 2021

    With stats like the ones above, it’s no wonder that people are getting into the CBD and cannabis business. You can start your business in the CBD industry in just ten steps.

    Step 1: Discover your target audience

    It’s unfeasible to reach every demographic, so you’ll need to determine who you’re going to cater your products to. That way you can build your brand around their needs. Your target market will determine everything from your product’s packaging to the content you incorporate into your marketing campaigns.

    Ask yourself some of the questions below to help determine your target market analysis:

    • What do they do?
    • Where do they shop?
    • What do they care about?
    • What products are they interested in?

    Step 2: Read up on all local and federal regulations for CBD businesses

    The commercial production of hemp in the U.S. became legal with the passing of the Farm Bill in 2018. This has enabled the sale of products that contain hemp-derived CBD and allow people to grow industrial hemp.

    There are some restrictions, too. For example, the hemp used to produce CBD must contain 0.3% THC or less. Unfortunately, state laws are different. So be sure that you have a clear understanding of the federal and state-level regulations that may affect your CBD product sales.

    Do you need a license to sell CBD?

    Some states require you to have a special business license to sell CBD. If you plan to purchase your product from wholesalers, check your state laws regarding resale licenses and permits. These laws are different everywhere, so you’ll want to find out whether you need a resale license and how to get one.

    Below are the most common states to sell CBD in and their regulation status:

    • Selling CBD in Florida. There are currently no set limits on the amount of CBD products a business can sell in Florida. While marijuana is legal for medicinal purposes, CBD products must not exceed the 0.3% THC federal allotment.
    • Selling CBD in Texas. Currently, Texas’s Department of State Health Services is forming a registration process for retailers who specifically sell consumable CBD products. However, retailers must keep their suppliers in check as it is a felony to sell CBD products with more than 0.3% THC to the general public.
    • Selling CBD in California. CBD and marijuana are both legal to sell in California for recreational purposes. When selling CBD products, retailers must ensure they follow the labeling requirements imposed by the California Department of Public Health.
    • Selling CBD in Oregon. Much like California, selling CBD in Oregon is legal and follows federal law about the amount of THC allowed. There are no licenses required for retailers but there are certain labeling requirements mandated by the Oregon Department of Agriculture.

    Step 3: Form your business plan

    A business plan is a formal document that details a business’s objectives and how it plans to achieve its goals. Think of it as a roadmap that tells you how to handle aspects like marketing, operations, and financials. Writing a business plan can help you strategize, secure funding, and set yourself up for long-term success. Having a formal plan is especially important in the cannabis business because investors are looking for legitimate organizations.

    What types of CBD products will you be selling?

    In your business plan, you will also define what products you will be selling. There are a variety of different CBD products. For example, you may get into the CBD oil business and focus narrowly on those products. Other CBD products include:

    • Tinctures and sprays
    • Pills and capsules
    • CBD vapes and cartridges
    • Topicals and patches
    • CBD edibles

    Step 4: Register your CBD business

    In order to sell CBD in a store or online, you will need to legally register your business. LLCs are a popular structure for small businesses but consider the other business types. You must also request an EIN/TIN with the IRS for your new business. Once you have your business license, you can begin sourcing and selling your products.

    Step 5: Secure reliable merchant services

    To sell CBD online, you need to have a payment processor that allows you to accept different payment methods. It’s important to choose a merchant service provider that not only accepts CBD merchants, but also understands the industry. You’ll want to find a processor that meets your business’s unique needs.

    Step 6: Find your CBD supplier

    There are two routes that you can take with your CBD or cannabis business. The first is to create your own CBD products. This gives you more autonomy and you’ll have more control over creating brand loyalty.

    The second option is to partner with an existing brand or dropshipper. This is an ideal path if you want to start a CBD business without having too many upfront costs. You can purchase products in bulk without having the need to have inventory on hand. If you take this route, be sure to do your diligence by searching for a reputable brand to partner with.

    Step 7: Establish your pricing strategy

    To create a pricing strategy, you must know how much your costs are for operating your business. A few questions that are important to consider are:

    • How much can you charge for your products?
    • What are your ongoing expenses?
    • How much profit do you intend to make on each product?
    • How can you become more profitable?

    Step 8: Solidify your shipping and handling strategy

    Shipping and handling are very important to an eCommerce business. You always want to ensure that you are meeting your customer’s expectations. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when strategizing your shipping policy:

    • What should be the threshold for free shipping?
    • Should I offer a variable fee? Destination-based or weight-based shipping fees can reduce logistics costs.
    • What is a feasible delivery timeline?
    • What logistics carrier should I work with?

    Based on these answers, you can then select supporting shipping and fulfillment software. This enables you to set shipping rates, print labels, auto-send updates to customers, and manage logistics.

    Step 9: Market your CBD business

    Once you have a thorough plan for your operations, you can then focus on acquiring customers. Just because you have a website and CBD is popular doesn’t mean that shoppers will come running. You need a solid marketing plan, one that draws the right audience to your offerings.

    Unfortunately, CBD products are often misunderstood. However, this allows room to build your customer base by educating interested buyers with accurate information. This can include content on different product types, potential benefits, and the hemp industry as a whole. Publishing regular, informational content will also help you with search engine results. Learn and leverage the latest in SEO to help you find potential customers for your CBD business.

    Stand out from the crowd of other CBD businesses

    With more and more business owners joining the industry every day, it becomes that much harder to stay competitive and top-of-mind for your audience. But by differentiating yourself from the competition, you make your products more memorable for your current and potential customers. With that in mind, do some deep diving to find what sets you apart from your competition.

    • Does your manufacturing process result in a product that’s more effective?
    • Are you backed by industry experts or influencers?
    • Do you serve a niche audience?
    • Does your branding or online marketing efforts leave a lasting impression on viewers?

    Discover what you bring to the table and double down on it. It will help you determine the steps toward growing your CBD business and set a precedent for your consumers.

    Diversify marketing channels to grow your CBD business

    Just because you will be doubling down on traditional marketing efforts does not mean that the other avenues aren’t important. Social media marketing has become increasingly important to a younger audience as well as influencer and affiliate marketing. Industry trade shows are also great opportunities to find your next supplier, seller, or customer.

      from influencer marketing is just as good, if not better than other marketing channels. , which speaks to how effective they are in generating revenue. that fill the top of the funnel for many smaller businesses.
    Influencer and affiliate marketing

    Influencer and affiliate marketing are especially attractive because they unlock access to a broader customer base that you didn’t have before. And after you design the initial campaigns, they involve very little work on your end, outside of periodically checking in with your influencers and affiliates. They do much of the heavy lifting, as they’re the ones responsible for creating the content ideas to promote your products.

    Trade shows and conferences

    Trade shows are unique in that they give you face-to-face interaction with businesses and customers in your industry that you may never see when running an eCommerce business. You can get feedback directly from them in a way you can’t do online. This leads to innovation and product improvement in the long run. But even more so than generating customers, you will have direct access to suppliers, sellers, marketers, and industry experts. Taking advantage of what they bring to the table will put you in a better place to grow your CBD business.

    Step 10: Protect yourself from industry risks

    The CBD industry is a risky one. The landscape of legislation and the adoption of CBD in everyday life have both been tough factors to contend with. There are just so many variables to keep track of.

    Regulations and laws change almost daily, and it’s up to you, the business owner, to ensure that your company is up to date. It isn’t an easy task. Make sure you’re aware of the business legal requirements you need to start or uphold your company’s status as legitimate.

    With so much riding on how the laws progress, the amount of capital you have, and the ability to secure emergency funds for your CBD business should be your priority. Also, consider securing backups for each of your vendors and create plans of action for potential future scenarios. In addition to this, certain types of products, such as CBD beverages and other ingestibles, are treated differently than lotions and creams. Purely due to how these items are used, can mean the difference between high risk and low risk.

    As your company grows, you’ll want to consider adding a financial advisor and lawyer to your team. They can help you detect changes, act upon legislation, and mitigate issues before they happen.

    Staying up to date with CBD legality reduces your risk

    A deep knowledge of the industry will help you mitigate risks as you grow your business in CBD.

    Although hemp-derived CBD is legal on the federal level, it’s ultimately up to each state to determine its legality. Staying updated on the latest news in your industry will help you to pivot quickly if needed. This puts you ahead of those who aren’t well prepared and allows you to seize opportunities when they’re available.

    Subscribe to industry blogs and publications, follow experts on platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter and network with people in different parts of your industry.

    If you’re the owner of a small CBD business, for instance, stay in contact with growers and legal experts — people outside of your immediate sphere of knowledge. You expose yourself to different viewpoints on an issue, and you may even discover something your less-connected peers missed, giving you an advantage in this highly competitive market.

    Your payment processor can help you overcome risk hurdles

    Considering all of the volatility in the market and laws, many CBD businesses have struggled to find and hold onto a CBD merchant account for their business. The reason for this stems from the fact that most banks don’t like that the industry is entrenched in legality changes. But in order for you to stay in business, this is an essential piece of the puzzle.

    So how can your payment processor help?

    Well, some credit card processing companies can get you set up with a traditional merchant account for CBD. These come with more stipulations and adherence guidelines than other industries, but at least you will be able to process debit and credit cards online and in-person if need be. And while this is the best option for many businesses, it can change.

    In the event that banks are unable to support CBD businesses, your processor can keep you online with check processing solutions. It’s not the most convenient answer, but at least your business will be able to accept customer payments while things get sorted out.

    Start Your CBD Business Today

    It takes a lot of hard work and determination to grow a successful CBD small business. From finding a supplier to securing high risk merchant services, you may feel a little overwhelmed. However, don’t let that stop you from pursuing your aspirations of starting your CBD business. Every day regulations and local legislation are making it increasingly easier for businesses to offer safe and reliable CBD products to consumers. On top of that, consumer trends keep pointing to the expansion of this lucrative industry. Fortunately, by following these tips on starting and growing your business in CBD, you’ll be on the short track to success in the years to come.

    Bronte is a designer and marketer based in Los Angeles, CA. She has been creating and promoting content for over 3 years, covering a range of topics in the payment processing industry. Bronte is currently the Director of Marketing at PaymentCloud, a merchant services provider that offers hard-to-place solutions for business owners across the nation.

    How to Start a CBD Business: The Ultimate Guide to Getting a Green Light

    Nearly four thousand years ago a Chinese Emperor Shen Nung, also known as the Father of Traditional Chinese Medicine, wrote in his The Great Herbal book that hemp can have theoretical powers for gout issues, rheumatism and absentmindedness among a variety of other ailments.

    Fast-forward to present digital-ridden days: you can now purchase a growing lineup of CBD goods both online and in-person, at convenience stores and in luxury celebrity-owned boutiques, all across the US and abroad too.

    But, despite a long history of usage and current popularity, CBD and the hemp plant it’s derived from remain largely misunderstood.

    So What is CBD?

    Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is a ‘wallflower’ cousin of the more reactive delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). These two compounds are found in the Cannabis plant, along with some 100 other types of cannabinoids.

    Unlike marijuana, CBD is obtained from industrial hemp — an MJ plant variety that must contain less than 0.3% of THC on a dry weight basis to be cultivated under a USDA-approved license. Meaning that it does not cause the feeling of ‘high’, but instead is said to carry a number of wellness and therapeutic benefits.

    CBD Industry by the Numbers

    Partially due to the advertised health benefits, partially because of the close affiliation with the cannabis plant, consumer interest around CBD products has been on a steady rise since 2016.

    2018, specifically, was named as the “breakout year” for CBD by EAZE, a San Francisco-based cannabis delivery platform.

    In 2018, the number of US CBD consumers doubled, from 2.6% to 4.8% with *drumroll*…Baby Boomers leading the pack.

    EAZE data suggests that female Boomers were among the most likely CBD users, opting for these products to deal with anxiety, sleep issues and pain relief.

    A survey by Consumer Review further states more than a quarter of people in the U.S. say they’ve tried CBD at least once in the past two years.

    That makes sense as CBD oil is now infused in loads of products across the board, especially in the wellness, food, beverage and beauty industries. From tinctures and topicals to gummies and even lattes, consumers now have a bevy of CBD products to explore.

    So what makes them tick the most? According to Brightfield Group, regular CBD users prefer to use vaping products, followed by the use of high-CBD flower :

    Growing interest? Checked. Overall consumer awareness? Rising! What about market growth prospects? Well, these seem to be solid too.

    By 2025, the retail market for CBD products in the US is expected to hit $16 billion, up from $2 billion in 2018.

    Compound the above with the fact that, among those who are familiar with CBD, 80% support its usage (even if they are not personally using it) and it becomes clear that CBD is a very promising niche for starting an online business.

    9 Steps for Starting a CBD Business Online

    Hyped products often have a short shelf life. But Inferring from above, the interest in CBD is here to stay.

    So if are interested in exploring this high-growth niche, here are the main steps for starting an online CBD business:

    1. Identify your CBD niche and products.
    2. Understand the laws and regulations around CBD.
    3. Generate a thorough CBD business plan.
    4. Get your business documents in order.
    5. Find your CBD supplier.
    6. Discover the perfect ecommerce platform.
    7. Build up your site.
    8. Determine shipping and payment terms.
    9. Market your business.

    Identify Your CBD Niche and Products

    A quick sweep through the (digital) shelves of any wellness store will prove that you can now buy CBD-anything. Creams and ointments, human and pet chewies, hemp clothes and accessories — when the consumer interest is high, loads of entrepreneurs try to capitalize on the hype.

    What should you sell then: the trendy stuff or the “classics”? Well, that’s for you to decide. When assessing the overall market prospects, look into the general niches first. Here are the most popular ones:

    • CBD-infused foods/beverages.
    • Supplements/wellness products.
    • CBD-based cosmetics.
    • CBD pet products.

    Next, you should zoom in on your product types. Most of these differ, based on the CBD consumption method:

    • Drops and sprays: The key ingredient in both is CBD oil, decarboxylated from hemp/hemp flowers and mixed with a carrier oil. Drops and sprays can also include flavoring agents and other compounds that make them more pleasant to ingest.
    • Pills and capsules: Wrapping a dose of cannabinoid in gelatin or soft gel capsule makes it more digestible. Also, since many people take CBD as an alternative to over-the-counter medicine, this form may seem more familiar and thus appealing, to them.
    • CBD vapes and cartridges: Inhalation products tend to be popular among recreational MJ users and people who enjoy the social aspect of vaping. Also, this method is often preferred by consumers using CBD for pain relief as it gets absorbed faster to the blood system through inhalations.
    • Tinctures: Just like medicinal tinctures, CBD-based ones are made by combining cannabinoids with alcohol or another strong solvent. Sometimes CBD tinctures also contain extra herbs. While most don’t have great flavor, tinctures are popular with people who want to feel the effects of CBD quickly.
    • Topicals and patches: Best suited for targeted action such as joint, back, or menstrual pain, topical ointments and CBD patches appeal to consumers who don’t like hemp flavor or prefer external applications for other reasons.
    • CBD edibles: Gummies, candy, chocolate, honey sticks, there’s a huge variety of munchable CBD products on the market. Most of them make hemp look less ‘medicinal’ and more of a wellness treat. In 2019, 3 out of 4 chefs identified CBD-infused food as a hot trend.

    Understand the Laws and Regulations Around CBD

    The Farm Bill , passed at the end of 2018, legalized the commercial production of hemp in the United States . Specifically, you can grow industrial hemp and then legally sell products containing hemp-derived CBD across the country.

    But there are some restrictions too:

    • The hemp you are using to produce CBD cannot contain more than 0.3% of THC . Any cannabis plant with a higher concentration of THC is automatically considered a marijuana plant and stronger regulations kick in.
    • CBD, produced from marijuana plants, is legal in 15 states for recreational cannabis usage and in 36 states for medical use.

    Now when it comes to cannabinoid as a substance, the regulatory matter gets complicated. To date, FDA has approved only one CBD-based prescription drug, Epidiolex. Meaning that no other CBD brand can make health claims regarding their CBD products. Also, the FDA prohibits adding cannabinoids into food, or marketing anything with it as dietary supplements.

    Wait, but what about an array of edible CBD products that are on the shelves? Are they illegal? It’s a gray area.

    Because the stance on CBD legality status isn’t consistent across federal and state regulators. As PBS writes :

    Federal provisions have a blindspot whereby a store can sell as much CBD as it wants, as long it doesn’t make any health claims about its products, put it in food nor add it to dietary supplements.

    While FDA doesn’t allow CBD in food, they are not taking any action against CBD sellers either, except for issuing warning letters for falsely-advertised health claims.

    1. Selling federally.

    Federal laws allow legal CBD sales nationwide. So long as your products contain less than 0.3% THC, you are good to go to market.

    2. Selling statewide.

    Statewide laws differ. In general, all states should allow sales of hemp-sources CBD with the right THC threshold. But specific favorable or not-so regulations may kick-in in states where recreational marijuana usage isn’t legal. So it’s best to cross-check with a local legal specialist if there are any restrictions regarding CBD product sales in your state.

    Create a Thorough CBD Business Plan

    Jumping into a business without a solid business plan is like driving without a rearview mirror: you can do it, but you may miss a huge obstacle heading your way.

    When it comes to the CBD niche, your business plan is also your navigator for staying atop of changing regulatory policies, conflicting operational priorities and new business opportunities, fueled by the market demand. Plus, it’s the document your financial supporters and other stakeholders will want to see.

    Here’s what should go into your business plan for ecommerce CBD operations:

    • Start with market analysis: The goal of a market analysis is to supply you with sufficient information about your industry size, customers, competitors and other market variables. So that you could make more informed decisions regarding your product positioning, pricing and overall go-to-market strategy.
    • Pick your brand name and confirm product range: Explain how your brand name, along with other brand assets, differentiates you from the competition. Recap which CBD niche you plan to target and why. briefly describe your product range, focusing on the product quality and competitive parameters.
    • Determine your financing: Estimate how much cash you’ll need to launch your operations. Break them down as one-time pre-launch investments (e.g commerce website development , inventory purchase, product design/branding) and ongoing monthly costs ( e.g. inventory restock, handling/packaging, shipping, marketing, taxes, etc.). Always add extra padding for ‘unplanned’ expenses because these will surely happen. Then look into how much time and how many sales you’ll need to make to break even monthly. If you are self-financing, estimate how much of a runway you’ll end up having. If you are planning to secure investment later on, prepare more figures describing your anticipated expenses vs profits, plus set targets for CPA (cost per acquisition), AOV( Average order value), sales conversion rates, customer retention rate, customer lifetime value (CLV).
    • Include a realistic marketing plan: A marketing plan details your strategy for growing awareness around your CBD brand, acquiring new customers and fostering repeat purchases. It’s a cornerstone document that should be a) data-backed b) realistic c) channel-specific. Yes, writing a solid marketing plan will take a ton of time and research. But this early investment pays off in terms of reduced budget waster and better marketing results later down the road.

    You can also learn more about business plan writing for ecommerce from our previous guide!

    Get Your Business Documents in Order

    To sell CBD online you need to obtain two types of licenses:

    • A regular business license: get incorporated and register a business with your state to start operations. Also, request an EIN/TIN for your newly created company from the IRS.
    • Reseller license: If you plan to purchase CBD from wholesalers, you may also need to get a Reseller’s license (certificate) from your state. This document is hugely important because it allows you to buy products wholesale without paying sales tax. The license also lets you collect sales tax from your customers afterward.

    Find Your CBD Supplier

    Arguably, the most important step of your ecommerce operations is finding a reliable CBD supplier. There are a few reasons for that.

    First, if you are selling nationwide, you need to ensure that you are selling CBD, derived from hemp plants, not marijuana ones. The latter contains a higher THC dosage, making them legal only in a handful of states. The wrinkle, however, is that there’s no affordable testing for determining the levels of THC in the plant. This can make purchasing raw materials from a farmer challenging if neither you nor they have the capabilities to test the crop.

    Reputable wholesalers, on the other hand, typically do lab testing and can provide certificates of analysis (COA), detailing the product content. Not being able to provide one is a major red flag.

    (Sample certificate of analysis of a CBD product. Source: Alphagreen )

    Apart from the general product contents, you should also ask to see the results of:

    • Pesticide testing (you’ll want to have a ‘clean’ product).
    • Microbiological testing (showing there’s no bacteria or mold inside the sample).
    • Residual solvents testing (prompts if there any stray chemicals remaining from the extraction process).

    Secondly, your product quality will impact customer satisfaction and your CBD brand reputation. After all, 24% of CBD users named the ability of the product to generate the “desired effect” as their primary purchase driver. When your product fails to deliver on the ‘effects’ promise due to poor content, you’d struggle to win repeat business. Other buying priorities include ingredients quality, price, concentration and consumption method (e.g. oil, edible, vape).

    Considering that CBD production remains underregulated, many ‘fake’ products end up on the shelves: ones containing no cannabidiol inside.

    Such sham brands and manufacturers, speculating on the CBD sweeping popularity, are making it harder for the honest CBD companies to break into the industry. As The New York Times feature on the origins of CDB popularity sums it up:

    “As a result, the compound is often caricatured as snake oil, a scam, even as promising research into the full potential of CBD is starting to pick up.”

    As a new CBD brand, you don’t want to end up on the sham side. Again, this is another reason why you should do careful due diligence when assessing different CBD manufacturers. Beyond requesting or performing an independent certification of analysis, also evaluate a potential wholesaler based on the following criteria:

    • Hemp sourcing method and origin.
    • Extraction method.
    • Reviews from other entrepreneurs.
    • Pricing.
    • Extra services (e.g. labeling, dropshipping).

    Discover the Perfect Ecommerce Platform

    Apart from finding a trustworthy CBD supplier, you’ll also need to identify the (best) ecommerce platform for your operations. Just like quality products, your tech infrastructure will positively contribute to your customers’ satisfaction with your brand.

    But, not every ecommerce platform allows creating an online CDB store due to opaque regulatory status. Still, you have some really good options!

    1. BigCommerce.

    BigCommerce offers a bevy of B2C and B2B ecommerce features for CBD retailers , wholesalers and manufacturers. From drag-and-drop page builders to limitless customization opportunities to 0% transaction fees and 99.9% uptime, we provide global CBD businesses an integrated ecommerce solution they need to start their operations fast and scale without constraints.

    2. Shopify.

    Shopify only allows US-based merchants based in certain states to sell CBD or hemp-derived goods on their platform. If you are eligible, you gain access to a nice set of core commerce features for launching your digital operations including design templates, integrated shipping, marketing tools and payment processing. But the proprietary Shopify Payment method isn’t available for CBD products. So you’ll need to get approved by a third-party payment processor .

    3. Shift4Shop.

    Shift4Shop is another ecommerce platform that allows hosting digital CBD and vape-related businesses . They offer similar ecommerce solutions — shopping cart software, embedded ‘buy’ button and full-scale ecommerce website builder, featuring themes, unlimited bandwidth, payment processor support and more. However, their website backend comes with a bit of a learning curve, so Shift4Shop may not be the optimal choice for non-coding beginners.

    Build Up Your CBD Website

    By opting for an ecommerce platform, over open-source ecommerce tools, or custom development, you reduce the website development timeline. Since the solution provider handles hosting, infrastructure and all that jazz, all you have to do to get your CBD operations off the ground is work on your store design and list products.

    1. Customize your design.

    Have you ever painted by numbers? Design experience on modern ecommerce platforms is pretty similar to that. Instead of starting with a blank canvas, you rely on a website theme — your set of pointers, pre-mapping the final store look.

    You can still be creative though, changing colors, layouts, fonts and other visual elements or even adding new elements to your online store.

    When it comes to CBD ecommerce store design make sure that:

      Key product information has a prominent spot: Most of your customers will want to know the key product specs: dosage/strength, hemp origin, extraction method, and possible benefits. Make sure all of this information is displayed in a digestible manner for each type of product. CBDistillery goes straight to business and highlights product ingredients and suggested use:

    2. Add products and descriptions.

    In the CBD space, your product descriptions should be more than just convincing. They also need to be:

    • Accurate and fact-based.
    • Devoid of any health claims.
    • Cliche- and jargon-free.

    When it comes to CBD marketing , FDA does not allow businesses to suggest that any of their CBD products can “diagnose,” “cure,” “treat,” or “prevent” any type of medical condition. Even if it’s tempting, don’t go making any big claims.

    What you can do though is reference actual medical research done around CBD usage. Also, you can leverage the voice of customer data — public/private reviews, first-hand accounts/stories, general feedback — in your product listings.

    Lastly, don’t write overly complex product descriptions. Not every store visitor will be a CBD connoisseur, familiar with the industry lingo. So while you should always provide ‘technical’ product information, avoid niche chemical terms, industry jargon and odd CBD pop culture references.

    3. Shoot and upload product photos.

    Ecommerce photos do two important things:

    • Act as an extension of your brand.
    • Help sway customers’ purchase decisions.

    For example, 90% of Etsy shoppers said that product image quality is a purchase trigger for them.

    If you have the budget, hire a professional photographer to shoot a series of product-only and lifestyle images for your brand. Those short on cash can also snap amazing ecommerce pictures on a budget .

    Determine Shipping and Payment Terms

    After you designed your store layout and organized your product catalog, you need to sort out how your products will reach their new owners.

    1. Determine your shipping policy.

    Shipping is important to ecommerce consumers. So you don’t want to let them down in that department. To work out the optimal shipping policy for your CBD business ask yourself these questions:

    • What’s the threshold I set for ‘free shipping’? For 79% of US consumers “free shipping” is a strong prompt to buy online more. But do people get upset when there isn’t such an option? In general, yes, over a third of consumers will be upset if there’s no complimentary shipping for an order valued above £135 ($150). Determine a reasonable threshold for your brand based on anticipated average order value.
    • Do you plan to offer a variable fee? Destination-based or weight-based shipping fees can help a smaller retailer reduce logistics costs. But they may alienate some customers too: 50% of abandonments happen when the shipping/tax costs are too high . The fix? Provide estimated shipping costs or a delivery calculator option pre-check out if you plan to use variable fees.
    • What delivery timeline is feasible? Most people are spoiled by Amazon Prime next-day deliveries, but few smaller brands can pull off the same levels of service nation-wide. So choose your battles. Limit same-day delivery to your city/state only. Set the right expectations regarding priority/express delivery if you plan to offer such.
    • Which logistics carrier works best? Not all carriers have straight policies regarding CBD shipments. Do your research carefully. For example, while UPS allows shipping hemp and CBD-infused products, they also state that “[we] reserve the right to dispose of any shipment containing Marijuana, Hemp or Hemp products tendered for shipment which Shippers are prohibited from shipping, which UPS is not authorized to accept, which UPS states that it will not accept, or which UPS has a right to refuse.” That’s not very reassuring.

    2. Select an ecommerce shipping solution.

    Your next step is to select supporting shipping and fulfillment software — a tool that will help you set shipping rates, manage logistics, print labels and auto-dispatch updates to customers. To minimize hassle and mistakes, your app should integrate directly into your ecommerce platform. You can discover different shipping and fulfillment apps on the BigCommerce marketplace . Don’t forget to check if your pick also iterates with the carrier you plan to use!

    3. Choose a payment processor, fit for CBD.

    CBD industry is deemed as “high risk” due to the ongoing regulatory debacle. Thus, many payment processors choose to exclude CBD sellers to minimize their operational risks. But you are not completely out of options. To accept payments from customers, you can work with a specialized payment processor who knows how to handle high-risk business.

    BigCommerce, for example, lets CBD businesses choose among 65 payment gateways that can be used to do business in over 100 countries, using some 250 local payment methods. Get to know more about how payment processing works for CBD companies .

    Market Your CBD Company

    Now that you are up and operational, you need to focus on customer acquisition. While the CBD industry is trendy right now, shoppers won’t flock to you on autopilot. Unless you set yourself up with a solid marketing system.

    1. Focus on content.

    CBD products are still largely misunderstood often, due to shady marketing from other brands or bogus medical claims made by self-proclaimed gurus. Build your initial customer base by seeding accurate content. Educate the interested, but cautious, buyers about:

    • Different product types.
    • CBD extraction methods.
    • Possible benefits and results.
    • Potential side-effects.
    • Correct usage/dosage.
    • The hemp industry as a whole.

    Invite industry experts and use claims from verified sources to create more comprehensive content than your competition. Focus both on your blog and social media especially, as that’s where most younger consumers go looking for both product inspiration and info.

    2. Leverage SEO.

    Publishing well-research content is key to dominating the search engine results. Especially with the latest Google update called ‘ passage indexing ’. By honing its AI algorithms, Google now indexes individual passages from a web page (rather than just the entire page) to help users find needle-in-a-haystack info.

    So for instance, if I’m googling something like “What’s the best strength of CBD oil?”, I’m redirected to a highlighted result on the page:

    For CBD businesses this SEO change is a great opportunity to attract top-of-the-funnel customers and convert them with educational content.

    Since SEO-competition around CBD-related keywords is pretty intense, going after long-tail, less-searched keywords can help you build the initial traffic, while you work on further optimizations .

    3. Partner with influencers.

    Much of CBD’s current popularity comes as a direct result of patients’ advocacy and evangelism. First-hand stories from people, whom CBD helped cope with chronic pain and seizures, initially spurred the mass-interest in the plant both for therapeutic and wellness purposes.

    Today, a ton of celebs are outspoken fans of the CBD. Some of them even launched their CBD businesses. So finding credible advocates for your brand shouldn’t be an issue. Just ensure that you are partnering with people who share your brand beliefs and can speak about CBD with authority. Also, don’t forget about mandatory FTS disclosures.

    Lastly, keep close tabs on the latest FDA regulations (as these change as we speak) to make sure your communication stays in line with the requirements. Also, individual states have different regulations when it comes to CBD advertising. Be sure to verify local rules too.

    4 Evergreen Issues CBD Businesses Are Facing

    While entrepreneurs in the CBD industry can capitalize on the industry’s rapid boom, they should also brace themselves for a set of unique challenges. With a lack of FDA guidelines and differences in CBD regulations on the state level, running a CBD business can feel particularly gruesome at times. Especially when it comes to:

    1. Banking and financing.

    Sadly, CBD businesses are considered ‘high-risk’ by many financial service providers due to the aforementioned gaps in state laws and regulations. So prepare to do some walking and negotiating when opening a merchant account. Securing extra financing via business loans can be challenging too, again thanks to the bad rep the cannabis industry has among certain FIs. But don’t despair. There are some hemp-friendly banks and investors in the field too.

    2. Payment processing.

    Payment processors aren’t making life easier for CBD sellers either. Most wrongly stigmatize such companies, unlike BigCommerce. Since 2019, we are offering our customers access to an array of hemp-friendly payment processors, along with other essential tools for building an ecommerce store .

    3. Business insurance.

    Insurers are slow to act on the recent legalization of hemp and hemp-derived products. Just like conservative banks, they are often barring CBD companies altogether or burden them with crazy-high premiums. But having a solid insurance plan is crucial for your company’s liability. So don’t skim on getting a good plan from a CBD-friendly insurer .

    4. Differentiation from the competition.

    With a slew of businesses touting ‘cannabis’ as a customer attractor, it may be difficult to stand out even when you sell genuine, high-quality cannabis products. A 2017 Penn University study , found that 70% of cannabinoid products sold online had issues with labeling. Over 42% of CBD products were under-labeled, meaning that they contained more CBD than stated. Some 26% were over-labeled — they had a lower condensation of cannabinoid than stated.

    Such happenings, along with misleading marketing and grossly overstated claims regarding CBD’s effectiveness are making new customers skeptical towards recent market entrants. Gain their trust by being positively different when it comes to:

    • Transparency : From telling where your hemp plants grow to display proper certification of analysis, explain to your customers what they are about to purchase and munch.
    • Accuracy : Avoid unverified scientific statements (even if they look promising for marketing). Check your sources, invite known experts to help you create content and educational brochures. Make honest, no-nonsense claims to set yourself apart from the sleazier types.
    • Storytelling: Some of the most successful CBD businesses were launched by long-term CBD evangelists and regular folks, whose chronic health condition was majorly alleviated by CBD. Your unique story, cementing your brand mission and values, can help you build a stronger emotional connection with your target audience. For example, CBD for Life tells a story of how their founder concocted a CBD cream to help her alleviate the back pain.

    3 Core Tips for Nurturing Your CBD Business

    New ecommerce companies are very tender. If you want your CBD business to grow, evolve and always be ripe, here are three things you should consider doing.

    1. Ask for help.

    Between murky regulations and operational issues, new CBD business owners will have a lot of their platter. While everything is searchable on Google these days, you shouldn’t underestimate the value of a mentor aka someone who already walked the same walk before you.

    “That’s the rub of excelling in the cannabis industry: there’s no model of excellence right now. It’s a fluid and shifting industry that didn’t really exist just a few years ago.”

    That makes finding a good industry mentor somewhat challenging. Yet, not impossible. AngelList has 1,210 marijuana investors and that’s just one place. Non-profit organizations such as CBD Alliance , National Hemp Association and Vote Hemp are also great places to find new industry connections and support.

    2. Have patience.

    Fast traction is often viewed as a given in the ecommerce industry. You sure have heard literally overnight success stories where some “$500 Instagram ad drove $50,000 in sales in a day”.

    In the CBD industry, paid ecommerce ads are not an option. Click-bait marketing can cause compliance issues, while content marketing and SEO both take time to work. So take a deep breath and prep several buckets of mental patients to methodically work through the different kinks of running CBD operations.

    3. Understand the industry.

    Despite (or because of) slow FDA response, the CBD industry keeps evolving in somewhat contradictory directions. While some states e.g. Texas removed the ban on selling edible CBD products in 2019. , others banned CBD-infused foods and beverages last year.

    Subsequently, market trends and consumer trends change from week to week too. Especially, when some celebrity like Gwyneth Paltrow announces her involvement in a new CBD venture or throws a CBD-themed baby shower as Kim Kardashian did.

    For sure, no CBD business can or should stay atop of all the latest trends and fads. But they do need to keep close tabs on emerging tendencies among their clients, changes in compliance requirements, along with other major industry happenings.

    Wrapping Up

    CBD is an interesting product to trade. On one hand, you can make a genuine difference by supplying your customers with life-improving goods. On the other, you also need to constantly educate the general public (along with some B2B partners and other stakeholders) about your products’ actual benefits, their legality status and lack of connection with THC-dominant marijuana.

    That can be a tough battle. But well worth it when you look at the CBD industry sales prospects again. Grandview Research estimates that the CBD market will swell by a compound annual growth rate of 22.2% between 2019 and 2025.

    And you can be part of that revenue pool too if you launch your online CBD business today!

    This material does not constitute legal, professional or financial advice and BigCommerce disclaims any liability with respect to this material. Please consult your attorney or professional advisor on specific legal, professional or financial matters.

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