How Coupon Sites are Increasing Dispensary Revenue
Plenty of shoppers use coupon sites like Rakuten, RetailMeNot, and Coupons.com to save on a range of consumer goods, from apparel to housewares, to grocery purchases. In some cases, companies provide these coupons.
Alternatively, sites may aggregate existing coupons or encourage users to provide them for the community without retailers’ input.
These sites are popular with both online and in-store shoppers because they offer considerably more convenience than finding and clipping paper coupons, thanks to searchability and deals for a huge variety of brands and products.
Despite the potential exposure dispensaries stand to gain by listing with coupon sites, many have never even considered the prospect.
This hesitance may be because they fear that their business or products wouldn’t be welcomed on such sites or that customers might not frequent these sites in search of cannabis.
The good news is, there are coupon sites specifically geared toward the cannabis industry. Frequently, the goal is to help connect businesses to the consumers seeking their goods while offering enticing discounts that keep customers coming back for more.
Sites that offer the best cannabis coupons do a great service to themselves, their dispensary partners, and consumers, offering advantages to all involved. What are cannabis coupon sites, how do they work, and how are dispensaries using them as a valued means of increasing outreach and revenue?
What Is a Cannabis Coupon Site?
A cannabis coupon site, much like other coupon sites, offers access to a range of digital discounts and deals for online and in-store purchases. The only real difference is that these websites focus exclusively on coupons for medical or recreational cannabis products.
This focus could include flower, vapes, concentrates, edibles, tinctures, and topicals, as well as CBD and other cannabinoid extracts, just for example.
These sites may be aggregators of existing coupons or user contributions or get their coupons directly from dispensaries. The difference for consumers is that coupon sites committed to partnering with dispensaries are sure to offer the latest deals, and the coupons are guaranteed to be good.
Aggregators, on the other hand, don’t tend to be as reliable. In other words, some cannabis coupon sites are better for both consumers and dispensaries.
How do Cannabis Coupon Sites Work?
The basic premise of cannabis coupon sites is a transactional relationship. The site acts as a platform for connecting businesses and consumers. Companies post coupons to attract customer sales, while customers take advantage of reduced rates on favorite products or use coupons to try new products, brands, and dispensaries.
The sites themselves benefit from the advertising dollars they attract, but they have to compel both business and consumer participation to do that.
Dispensaries looking to benefit by listing coupons with these sites need to understand how different sites operate to find the options that are likely to deliver the best ROI. What should dispensaries look for?
When choosing the best cannabis coupon site to reach a new audience and encourage sales, there are several considerations. A good place to start is by seeking a site that offers a directory of trusted, local dispensaries for its customers. By joining a directory, dispensaries have the opportunity to increase awareness with local customers.
It’s also wise to look for a site that frequently updates deal listings, as this builds trust with customers, who can rely on coupons to work, and who will check back often for new discounts.
Some sites also promote featured dispensaries and offer additional advertising opportunities, which drive chances to increase exposure and boost patronage.
What Advantages do Dispensaries Gain from Coupon Sites?
There’s no denying the benefits for consumers using cannabis coupon sites.
Assuming the sites consistently provide access to reliable coupons, customers have the opportunity to save on products they’d purchase anyway, or alternately, try new products at discounted rates, rather than paying full price to try something they might not end up liking.
This approach can help to improve access to both medical and recreational cannabis.
In some cases, buyers can also find new dispensaries to visit, locating the nearest facilities and finding coupons that encourage them to support local businesses. There are also several potential benefits for dispensaries using cannabis coupon sites to promote sales or engage in additional advertising.
According to Nathan Johnson, CEO/Co-Founder of Cannasaver, there are many reasons why coupons can be so effective as a marketing strategy, including the ability to:
- Increase exposure
- Compel action
- Counteract high price points
- Drive desired consumer purchases
- Move high-margin products
- Create upsell opportunities
- Contribute to customer retention strategies
How does each of these benefits contribute to increasing dispensary revenue?
The underlying goal of any business effort is income. Companies need to make sales to survive. This process starts by ensuring that consumers are aware of the existence of a company and reaching out to those seeking the products the company has to offer.
Raising awareness could be as simple as posting a sign to let passersby know where a business is located, but it can also be a much more complex process of marketing and advertising strategies.
Why are coupons ideal for increasing exposure? Because they not only raise awareness but offer incentives to frequent the business.
A listing with a cannabis coupon site not only exposes dispensaries to a new audience but to a targeted group that is specifically seeking their products, exponentially increasing opportunities for meaningful connections that lead to sales and ongoing patronage.
By providing a range of coupons, retailers can move product and endear customers to their brand, but they also gain valuable insights about which discounts, deals, brands, and products are most attractive to customers, helping to plan future sales and better forecast earning potential.
Coupons serve various business purposes, but one of the most important is that they deliver a call to action that is mutually beneficial to dispensaries and consumers.
While marketing strategies are designed to build rapport with customers, companies ultimately want any marketing and advertising expenditure to result in sales and return on investment. This desire is why most efforts include some kind of call to action.
A good call to action conveys a specific act a business wants consumers to complete, typically visiting a website or store location, signing up for membership, or purchasing certain products. The best calls to action are direct but lack a pushy vibe that tends to turn off consumers.
How do coupons fit in? A coupon generally provides an indirect call to action that consumers nonetheless understand. When an item is offered at a discounted rate, it is implied that consumers should buy now to take advantage of savings that won’t last.
It’s a means of advertising that encourages timely follow-through to gain the benefit of paying less for something customers would normally buy at full price or that they might be willing to try at a reduced cost.
Counteract High Price Points
There’s a reason so many dispensaries offer membership and rewards programs for their loyal customers, aside from encouraging retention. It has to do with the fact that cannabis can be costly.
In some cases, medical marijuana is an important part of a patient’s health and wellness regimen. Alternately, customers may purchase recreational cannabis for personal enjoyment, relaxation, or other reasons.
Either way, the cost for regular consumption can be steep. Because prices for cannabis products are high, savvy customers will save where they can, and dispensaries that provide enticing discounts and deals will reap the benefits of repeat visits.
Coupons are a way to incentivize both first-time purchases and ongoing patronage. Suppose that a retailer can clear that first hurdle of getting someone in the door. In that case, they have greater opportunities to create positive and engaging interactions with customers and let premium products speak for themselves.
A long-term strategy that includes coupon listings allows dispensaries to increase customer access to pricey products, and affordability can put a company ahead of competitors.
Drive Desired Consumer Purchases
It’s easy to assume that coupons will cut into profits, but this won’t be the case with the right strategy. Consider, for example, overstock inventory.
A business with unsold inventory sitting on shelves is losing money on it, no matter the situation. If issuing a coupon helps move that product, dispensaries are doing better than when products are collecting dust on a shelf.
Even if profit margins are reduced through the lower price offered by the coupon, a dispensary will make space for better-selling products or perhaps increase demand for the overstock item, spurring future, full-price sales.
In addition, consumers enjoy the feeling that they’re getting added value through the savings presented, which could help generate repeat business, social mentions, and other benefits.
Dispensaries could also use coupons to promote new brands or products by increasing awareness, interest, and sales.
Utilizing coupons to drive sales of specific products allows dispensaries to gain greater control over inventory management, add value for consumers in the process, and potentially open the door to repeat business and other benefits long-term.
Move High-Margin Products
In any business, some products are going to have higher profit margins than others. For example, many dispensaries offer an array of popular brands and products, but some also provide their own in-house products that probably fit into a higher-margin category. How can in-house products compete with in-demand, widely recognized brand names?
Coupons offer one way for dispensaries to compete. By providing similar products at reduced rates, retailers have the opportunity to increase awareness and sales of their own high-margin products.
If they deliver competitive value (flavor, potency, and other desirable features) at less cost, customers may come to prefer them, even at full price.
This preference, in turn, can boost overall profitability for dispensaries. Of course, this practice needn’t be confined to in-house products alone. This strategy could be effective for any high-margin products a dispensary wants to promote.
Create Upsell Opportunities
Coupons are not only a great way to get customers in the door, but they can also help to increase overall sales. Consumers engaged in searching for cannabis coupons are very likely to have made purchases previously, and they often make purchases regularly.
Think about it — people mostly look for coupons for brands or products they regularly buy as a way to save on purchases they’d make anyway.
When a cannabis coupon grabs consumer attention and brings someone to a website or store, chances are they’re either trying to save on a product they already know they want or one that they’re interested in trying now that they can get a discounted rate.
With that being said, they’re probably also interested in products they don’t have a coupon for, and there’s a fair chance they’ll make additional purchases on non-coupon items for the sake of convenience, especially when dispensaries make a point of fishing for an upsell.
Contribute to Customer Retention Strategies
One of the best reasons to offer a rotating range of coupons through a trusted coupon site is to bring in new customers, but equally important is encouraging repeat sales and ongoing patronage.
This relationship development could mean tracking consumer purchases to offer additional coupons or waiting to see if coupon sales lead to full-price purchases. Dispensaries can then offer discounts on other products customers may enjoy, based on purchasing habits.
Offering a variety of coupons, instead of discounts on the same products all of the time, could provide an incentive for a greater range of customers to try a new dispensary.
Plus, it will help ensure that customers don’t get too used to paying a discounted rate on just one product, making them more likely to buy it at full price later, rather than getting upset when the discount expires.
Customer retention can be a difficult needle to thread. It’s not easy to strike a balance between offering added value and maintaining or growing profit margins. However, cannabis coupon sites allow dispensaries to explore value propositions through coupon listings and reap the benefits that result.
Some of the many benefits of listing with a cannabis coupon site include increased exposure, incentives for consumers to make purchases, the ability to better manage inventory, and opportunities to drive sales, profits, and customer retention. Of course, it all hinges on finding the right platforms and developing strategies to optimize ROI.