USE CASE: Growing a Profitable Dispensary Before Opening Your Doors

Growing a Profitable Dispensary Before Your Doors Even Open Using Consulting and Networking

Aspiring entrepreneurs and cannabis enthusiasts are flocking to the cannabis industry and its highly profitable business opportunities. Of those, dispensaries are among the most lucrative with the potential for hundreds of thousands of dollars in top line revenue in the first month. 

The caveat here is that you must follow best practices to maximize profit and ensure that your business is prepared when it comes time to hang your proverbial shingle. The challenge? Knowing where to start!

The Accounting for Green Approach to Consulting with Aspiring Dispensary Owners

Accounting for Green has a well-earned reputation for excellence when it comes to financial advice for cannabis businesses. 

Although we are happy to help owners of dispensaries and other cannabis businesses overcome challenges at any stage in their business, we love supporting them in the early stages by helping them avoid the most significant pitfalls including cash management strategies, financial forecasting, and even business operations and staffing.

The single most valuable piece of advice we give dispensaries with a provisional license who have not yet opened their doors is: start networking with other businesses in the cannabis space. 

Leverage Your Network to Successfully Open and Avoid the Biggest Mistake Most New Dispensary Owners Make

There’s no question that starting a dispensary takes a lot of work, From applying to the Cannabis Control Commission* getting a provisional license, and receiving an occupancy permit, there’s a lot that goes into developing and working a business plan. And it takes time—as much as eight months or longer passes from the time most dispensaries start the application process to actually opening their doors. 

*In Massachusetts, where Accounting for Green is based, it’s the Cannabis Control Commission. Other states may have different names for the department that oversees cannabis businesses.

To maximize this timeline, cannapreneurs MUST start networking and planning how they’ll fill their shelves from the get-go to ensure a successful grand opening with sufficient product. Those that don’t wish they had started networking earlier.

KNOW YOUR CLIENTS

Identify Your Clientele and Their Preferences

Knowing what part of town you’re in, who is likely to buy from you, and their budget helps you build a product catalog. Who will your business serve on the spectrum of blue-collar to white-collar? Top-line micro grow and high-end products may not sell in every market.

MEET YOUR SUPPLIERS

Build Relationships with Cultivators

Unlike alcohol, there are not many distributors in the cannabis industry. Those that exist represent a small number of products or cultivators, which means you must get to know the people who grow your product.

CREATE A CATALOG

Build a Catalog of Product Lines

Who grows the flower you want to carry? What about the other cannabis products — who manufactures them? Build a catalog of contacts, product price points, and a variety of terpene-based and non-terpene-based products.

PLAN AHEAD

Plan for Supply Chain Issues

Post-pandemic supply chain problems are real. To plan ahead, identify the branded containers or signage you want, and order key supplies like receipt paper. With a limited number of cultivators, you may also run into a limited supply of the product you want to carry, so make sure you’re planning for those purchases as well.

Leverage Your Network to Successfully Open and Avoid the Biggest Mistake Most New Dispensary Owners Make

We always tell cannabis business owners to go to as many networking events, conferences, and meetings as they can to start getting to know the local players. And, it MUST be local. Cannabis products and money cannot cross state lines.

Too often business owners neglect building a network of peers because they see one another as competition. While this is true to a point, there’s also more value in getting to know others who share your goal of furthering the cannabis industry and gaining profit. It’s also the best way to understand your local opportunities, developments, and trends, and maintain a profitable business.

Accounting for Green consults with up-and-coming cannapreneurs as well as established businesses on best financial and business practices. They come to us with their big ideas, and we help them understand and explore the financial and business ramifications of each of them. In fact, we frequently tell them “just because you can, doesn’t mean that you should.” 

We’d love to talk with you.

Contact us today to start exploring your big idea or get financial expertise to reach your next big business goal.