I recently had a dispensary reach out to me and ask for some cannabis SEO help.  That’s not uncommon seeing as we’re in the business of helping dispensaries with marketing services.  But I did want to share the story because I think it could be helpful for other cannabis brands and it’s also FREE advice.

Backstory:

I was on vacation in Denver when I stopped in at a cool dispensary.  Their brand was great, products were displayed beautifully and the staff was helpful.  However, they weren’t showing up in the top 10 for Google.  A real shame for a small business in a competitive market.  I did some digging while on my phone and gave the owner a couple tips.

We exchanged emails and I followed up with this message:

Hey [Dispensary Owner],

It was great meeting you yesterday at [Dispensary].  I really enjoyed the store and environment.

I thought I should elaborate on my suggestions from yesterday as I was still in vacation mode.

  1. Moz Local – They’re a great way to get your consistent information out to all directories.  Your NAP (Name, Address & Phone) are really important for local businesses being found in Google.  It’s about $100/year but you only need to pay one time.  It works great and saves you 20+ hours of doing it yourself.
  2. Squarespace SEO Checklist – I love the look of your website!  However, there are some minor changes you can make to rank better in Google.  I’d recommend you or your web person going through this checklist and making sure you’re doing everything you can to maximize your exposure.
    • For instance, you don’t have a meta description for your homepage which doesn’t look great in Google.  This is also a lost opportunity for putting in keywords that you could rank for.
    • Here’s an example of a dispensary I helped out in Chicago.  You can see I went after keywords like ‘[Keyword]’ and ‘[Keyword]’ both keywords they now rank for that drive foot traffic to their new business.

These two things will help you get found online.  At the end of the day, I like helping small businesses because I run my own small business.

If there’s any way I can help [Dispensary] be a massive success, please let me know.  I’m happy to help.
All the best,
David

How this helps dispensaries to grow foot traffic their business

That was back in April and I received a message from the owner recently asking me for a quote.  I was delighted to hear that they’ve been growing and are redoing their website.  For fun, I looked up their SEMRush traffic to see if my advice helped.

I don’t want to hurt my arm patting my back but it goes to show that there are some simple changes that can be done to help grow your dispensary foot traffic.

More on the specific SEO tactics for dispensaries

The two items I covered were directory submissions and basic onsite SEO.  That’s just the tip of the iceberg to help grow your dispensary BUT I’ll go in-depth as to why they helped so much.

  • Your dispensary needs to be listed in directories to signal to Google that you’re a legitimate business.  Your presence on Google needs to be consistent (NAP – Name, Address, Phone) and it’s incredibly easy to have inconsistencies when you aren’t controlling those directory submissions.  Moz Local is easy to use but there are more robust options out there that agencies leverage to go from 12+ directory submissions to 100+.  Each submission gets a link back to your site to grow your overall authority.
  • Secondly, you won’t show up for keywords that are important to your business if those keywords aren’t on your website.  That may sound obvious BUT it’s often overlooked.  If you want to show up for “Dispensary in [Your City]”, you should put that your site and in your Metas.  I provided the dispensary owner a checklist from Squarespace BUT Squarespace is notoriously bad for SEO.  That’s why the dispensary owner is moving to WordPress and wants Clarity‘s help to go even further in the rankings.

Summary

Your dispensary rocks.  I don’t know you but I’m sure it does.  You need to be found online if you want to thrive in today’s marketplace.  SEO for dispensaries is essential.  Take this free advice and implement it for your website.  If you get to the point where you need help, we’re always here for you.