The cannabis industry is still relatively young. Although it’s taken some significant strides in the past few years, there’s still a long way to go. Cannabis, as a product, literally sells itself. But, considering the level of competition in the industry, companies are struggling to get the upper hand over their competitors — and what better way is there to do it than keeping their customers happy?
Keeping your customers happy and building a loyal customer base is always more cost-effective than getting new customers. Regardless of the nature of your cannabis business, a CRM can go a long way in boosting customer loyalty.
Read all about CRM and how it can revolutionise your business. We’ve also thrown in a few tips on choosing the best CRM for your cannabis dispensary. But first, let’s have a look at what a CRM is.
What Is CRM?
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) refers to all technologies, techniques, tools, and strategies used by businesses to develop, retrain, and acquire customers. At its core, CRM ensures every interaction between a business and its customers goes smoothly and efficiently to increase overall profits.
What Can a CRM Do for Your Cannabis Business?
Increase Customer Loyalty, Retention, and Repeat Purchases
CRM makes it easier for your marketing team to engage with your customers. This way, they can better nurture them through the marketing funnel. And ultimately turn cold leads into buying customers.
Leveraging CRM capabilities with email marketing also allows your cannabis business to create a more wholesome digital brand. In this day and age, enhancing your brand’s presence in the digital space is vital to your business’s success.
And finally, your marketing team can use data collected through the CRM to explore the challenges and problems that your customers face and engage them with relevant content that matters to them. When done right, this comes in pretty handy in building a solid relationship with your customers. This ultimately leads to an increase in sales volume, loyalty, and word-of-mouth marketing.
Get More Relevant Leads for Your Sales Team
A CRM gives you your customers’ data at your fingertips. It also allows you to use that data to segment your customers into different target audiences based on purchase behaviour, demographics, and psychographics. You can then use that data to identify your best customers, and effectively target marching leads through your marketing initiatives.
According to research, up to 79 per cent of all marketing leads are never converted to sales. But, with a CRM, you can change this. CRMs allow marketers to bring in more high-quality leads and successfully push them through the marketing funnel.
Boost Your Revenue With Upsell Opportunities
CRMs provide you with tons of communication opportunities that enable you to increase customer lifetime value and generate new business from new customers through targeted cross-sell and upsell offers.
Say, for example, you set up a variety of upselling and cross-sell marketing campaigns triggered by customers’ actions such as purchasing a specific product or timing, such as a customer’s birthday. In this case, the actions could trigger your sales team to strike up a one-on-one conversation with a customer via email or phone. Ultimately, this builds rapport between you and your customers.
Generate Higher Per-Purchase Values
Regardless of the nature of your business, it’s always easier to sell to an existing customer than a new one. Having a CRM up your sleeves makes it even easier since you already have the tools you need to understand your customers better.
CRM software also gives you the ability to develop specific targeting criteria to target personalised messages to the right people who are more likely to respond to them. Think of it this way; the more you know about your customers, the easier it is to sell to them and the easier it is to convince them to buy more.
Improve Your Sales and Marketing ROI
CRM software allows you to set up automated sales, marketing, and communication processes. This, in turn, causes your sales and marketing ROI to go up. The CRM software also gives your sales team access to data that enables them to attract more qualified leads, develop better programs, and close sales much faster.
With a CRM, your sales team can determine the most appropriate time to communicate with prospective customers to get the best response. In the end, this is not only a time-saving means of increasing your ROI, but it’s also cost-effective.
Improve Customer Service and Satisfaction
Imagine having instant access to your customer’s purchase history, their favourites, and even their wish list. That’s what you get with a CRM — everyone in your team is better able to provide the best customer service possible and solve customer problems fast and efficiently.
Today, every interaction between you and your customers is essential in keeping them happy. Having a CRM makes it possible to breed consistency since everyone on the team has instant access to all the information they need to deliver the kind of personalised service that customers expect.
Create Personalised Communications
CRM software comes equipped with segmentation capabilities that your business can use to send targeted messages to each recipient. And this doesn’t just involve adding the recipient’s name in the email’s subject line. It also involves tailoring offers based on your prospective customers’ behaviours and demographics.
Since you have all that information at your fingertips, you can completely customise your communications with your customers and improve their experience with your brand. This leads to more purchases and improves vocal brand advocacy and sentiment.
Make Informed Decisions Using Reliable Data
As a business manager, you need an effective means of measuring your investment results so you can grow your business while maximising your team’s performance. CRM software feature tools that give you deep insight into what’s working and what’s not. This way, you can hold your sales and marketing team accountable and optimise your investment at all times.
Boost Employee Productivity
Based on research from Salesforce, businesses using CRM software see their sales productivity jump by 34 per cent, sales by 29 per cent, and sales forecast accuracy by 42 per cent. The reason behind this is pretty simple. If you have the right tools, you can break down business silos. This allows you to automate processes and free up your employees’ time so that they can focus on other tasks to boost your business’s ROI.
Additionally, CRM software gives your team the tools they need to build repeatable processes. Say, for example, your cannabis business involves a long sales pipeline. In that case, your sales team can build a sales pipeline with the CRM software, complete with reminders, notifications, and histories. That way, a salesperson can log into the CRM at any given moment and see where a deal is in the pipeline and what needs to be done to close the deal faster.
Monitor and Track Sales
With CRM software, you can track sales through the pipeline. At any given time, you need to track which items are selling well and which ones aren’t.
And by using the data gained from the CRM software, you can use AI and trend analysis to predict the future and analyse your business’s performance in real-time.
You can also integrate your CRM software with ERP to allow integration with resource/accounting planning. This way, you’ll be able to track your sales and track inventory levels.
Staying compliant is one of the most challenging aspects of running a cannabis business. The compliance authorities expect you to provide proof that your cannabis products are free of contaminants like bacteria, mould, fungi, pesticide residue, and other harmful substances.
If you don’t have the proper documentation to prove that your cannabis products are safe, you could face severe penalties. These include fines, loss of business license, and even jail terms.
CRM software allows you to store information about your suppliers’ test procedures. This way, you can access the data whenever necessary. CRM software can also provide a clear paper trail for health audit inquiries.
Improved Data Security
Small businesses often lose sensitive financial data during routine financial transactions to hackers. These hackers aim to steal your customers’ valuable financial data, including personal information, credit card numbers, and bank account details. CRM software allows you to secure all your sensitive data by encrypting files and limiting unauthorised access.
A More Streamlined Reporting and Analytics Process
Reporting your income is one of the most crucial aspects of staying compliant. That said, since most cannabis dispensaries and suppliers sell multiple products to a wide variety of customers, keeping track of revenue can be pretty daunting.
Luckily, CRM software comes equipped with reporting tools that make revenue and compliance tracking a breeze. Additionally, you can customise these reports based on your preferences, thereby helping you identify trends within your operation. You can also run the reports on secondary software like Google Sheets to get insight into your overall performance over time.
How to Choose the Best CRM for Your Cannabis Dispensary
Choose Software That Specialises in Cannabis
When building your tool stack, it is always tempting to go for the more established brands. But, unless they were designed for a cannabis business, they won’t be of much help.
This is mainly due to compliance issues. Whenever you’re searching for a CRM, you need one specially designed to navigate the intricacies of cannabis compliance. Luckily, the vast growth of canna-tech companies over the past few years has provided cannabis-specific technology to cater to all your needs throughout the cannabis supply chain.
Buy From a Company With Excellent Customer Support
The CRM vendor you choose to work with should be able to support you both in the initial setup process and ongoing questions. You can assess the vendor’s customer support capabilities by researching their online tools and help centres or calling their support line to get a sense of how easy it will be to reach them when needed. If the vendor is not available 24/7 and cannot support the needs of your business, then it’s best to walk away.
Choose Software With Marketing Integration and Automation
Choosing a CRM software specifically designed for the cannabis industry can help you take advantage of marketing integration and automation. These are the most efficient and effective processes for getting products and messages from your current and prospective customers on a continuous basis. When done right, it can be your main driving force for lead creation and management.
All CRMs are designed to help you gather customer data so you can utilise it to improve business relationships and sales. That said, they all work a little differently when it comes to prioritising certain features and functionality. This is primarily reflected in user experience.
Enterprise-grade CRMs are built for large organisations with multiple customer service teams that use the software to coordinate data and customer engagement. This type of CRMs mostly comes with lots of tabs and integrations that a regular cannabis dispensary might not need.
CRMs built for small businesses often take a different approach. In most cases, they allow marketing and customer service teams to access the data, and their user experience is aimed at boosting sales.
Your cannabis dispensary might be small now. But if you plan to grow it in the future, you need a scalable software solution. This is especially true if you foresee your workforce growing and shrinking over time, i.e., when you hire seasonal employees. This basically means that if you want a software solution that is both effective and efficient, regardless of the amount of work you throw its way, it needs to be both flexible and scalable.
The Bottom Line
When you understand your customers, your cannabis business will be more successful. That is why every cannabis-related business needs a cannabis-specific CRM. Apart from improving customer relations and streamlining your business operations, you can also integrate it with other software to drive growth in all areas of your business.