Legal Cannabis Industry Intelligence Overview
With both medical and recreational cannabis legal in half of of the United States and throughout Canada, the entire industry is booming.
In fact, many business metrics indicate that cannabis is the fastest growing industry in the U.S. Recent projections show that cannabis could be a $40 billion industry by 2024 – nearly four times the amount that consumers spent on legal cannabis worldwide in 2018.
As much as the industry has taken off in recent years, there is still plenty of room for growth – and the US states with legalized medical and recreational cannabis are serving as the epicenters of the industry.
There is also a distinct possibility that more states will legalize cannabis in the years to come, which could lead to a national repeal on cannabis prohibition in the near future.
In other words, right now is a great time to be a cannabis entrepreneur or a business trying to carve out a piece of the cannabis industry pie.
The Importance of Geographical Data
Of course, just being a retailer in the industry doesn’t guarantee success. With a growing market, there will also be increased competition for sales, with more businesses trying to get a foothold in the industry.
Heavy taxes and strict regulations within the cannabis industry that can also complicate things and make it difficult for businesses to turn a profit.
That is, if they don’t have a plan in place for how to operate as efficiently as possible and maximize their revenue.
To get an edge on the competition, cannabis-related businesses must understand the latest trends in the industry and have the most up-to-date information possible.
In an industry this new and ever-changing—and one with so much room for expansion—market research and data intelligence become crucial guideposts. And companies that specialize in that information will play a key role in the future of the industry.
It’s important to keep in mind that many American states and Canadian provinces have unique distinctions in their cannabis laws. What works in one market may not apply to another market, making research on specific geographical demographics invaluable.
It can also make insights geared toward the general industry dubious in relation to your specific jurisdiction. In the same vein, newly legalized areas will have unique trends and possibilities unrelated to established marketplaces.
So, more so than most industries, market research and data intelligence related to commercial cannabis is critical.
The Value of Product-Specific Insights
The cannabis industry boasts over 1,500 brands, and most consumers are attracted to a wide range of suppliers.
For the pure variety, it’s challenging for dispensaries and retailers to track everything available, find the best products to serve their customers, and keep inventory cost-effective.
To accomplish all three requires a large amount of data. What’s more, the analytics should stay as up-to-the-minute as possible to track new companies, defunct organizations, and changing trends. The more information the better. The more recent? Even better.
In order to best serve your customer base, expand your business, and maximize revenue, cannabis retailers need the latest data intelligence information and market research.
Otherwise, it’s easy to get left behind by people who do. Knowledge is power!
Fortunately, exceptional market research and data intelligence firms exist to help cannabis-related businesses take full advantage of what might be the largest economy’s fastest-growing industry.
BDS Analytics utilizes GreenEdge technology to track retail sales within the cannabis industry, and provide insights into the behavior of consumers. The use this data to better project future trends, and their track record of success speaks for itself.
This is a research firm that pledges to answer the client’s “who” and “why” questions as it relates to the purchase and consumption of cannabis products. They also try to tackle “when,” “where,” and “how much.”
GreenEdge is able to track the products that cannabis consumers are buying, the prices they’re paying for those products, and the potential that exists in certain markets to help individual dispensaries.
BDS Analytics also publishes data about the overall landscape of the cannabis industry.
Brightfield Group aims to give its customers the most comprehensive information on consumers, brands, and markets in the cannabis and CBD industries. They offer solutions in market entry, brand development, product development, and marketing & advertising.
Brightfield provides deep market insight for both the CBD and cannabis industries and the U.S. and worldwide.
They also closely examine the behavior of consumers, learning about their demographics, as well as the “how” and “why” of their usage of CBS and cannabis products.
Brightfield also offers a customized research and analytic projections to help individual retailers and dispensaries better understand their business and the ways in which they can make improvements.
Cannabis Benchmarks provides a wide array of information that’s extremely useful to cannabis-related businesses.
Among their free services include a cannabis spot index report for both the U.S. and Canada’s hemp markets. Among their paid services, annual reports, customized analytics, and consulting services.
Cannabis Benchmarks also offers a “spot price snapshot,” which is a newsletter delivered to subscribers every Friday, designed to make it easier to keep up with changing wholesale cannabis prices.
With all of the services they provide, Cannabis Benchmarks is appealing to both cannabis retailers and cultivators alike.
New Frontier Data
New Frontier Data states that its purpose is “to elevate the discussion around the legal cannabis industry.” They offer a platform called Equio that brings together information from social media and the company’s members to access data in real-time.
Equio is secure and anonymous for users, who have access to point-of-sale information from those within the cannabis industry in a central database. This allows cannabis dispensaries to notice any trends or spikes in the market firsthand and respond accordingly as soon as possible.
In addition to the Equio platform, New Frontier Data also puts together comprehensive industry reports that share trends in all of the major legal cannabis markets.
The company will also perform customized research for cannabis-related businesses to answer any questions and make recommendations on how to improve their operations.
Zefyr describes itself as “The Alexa of New Market Data.” They try to simplify data as much as possible, creating charts and maps that are easy to understand.
They do most of their work in product data and consumer data. And while they don’t specialize in the cannabis industry specifically, Zefyr does specialize in the trends of new and fast-growing industries, which makes it a great fit for cannabis-related businesses.
Zefyr was recently acquired by New Frontier Data (described above), making it an especially robust outlet for a wide range of market research needs.
Jade Insights offers a platform for individual businesses within the cannabis industry to gain insight (as the name suggests) into their business operations.
The platform considers metrics about the business itself, from inventory to customer retention to staffing and beyond.
All data from your business is encrypted to ensure security and privacy, and displayed quickly in straightforward terms.
Few firms, listed here or otherwise, make it easier to understand the trends fast, relate it to your business specifically, and implement new strategies with confidence.
Jade Insights is an industry favorite for making informed decisions about every aspect of their business.
Their glowing testimonials showcase their ability to find areas of improvements that others tend to miss.
Jade also offers in-depth consulting services for businesses that wish to dive deeper into what they need to do in order to maximize their efficiency and profits.
Headset is another company that aims to provide real-time data to help both producers and retailers in the cannabis industry stay up to date on current trends and get ahead of the pack.
They track the top-selling products throughout the industry, help retailers analyze their point-of-sale data, and even help the relationship between vendors and retailers to avoid stock problems or last-minute ordering.
Headset’s goal is to simplify the data as much as possible to help businesses understand the information they’re receiving and make solid choices accordingly. T
hey also publish several blog articles monthly that take a closer look at recent trends, as well as industry reports related to cannabis products and sales.
Cannabis Big Data
The name says it all, as Cannabis Big Data provides businesses in the marijuana industry with just about any information they need.
Their toolkit can be integrated into any aspect of a business, including point-of-sale, grow records, marketing, and more. They’re akin to having an in-house intelligence or data analytics department.
Businesses that are seeking help in a specific area, whether it be adding revenue, lowering operating costs, or exploring the possibility of expanding, should consider Cannabis Big Data. Chances are, they already offer a module that can help.
While the legal cannabis industry is still very young, and still very much met with skepticism by some at the federal level, there is not doubt that we are living in the beginning of what will eventually become a behemoth of an industry.
Navigating young and complicated industries like legal cannabis is difficult so having reliable, comprehensive data intelligence and analytics are critical when looking to invest in this industry with confidence.
All of the tools offer unique selling points and choosing one will come down to your specific needs as an investor or entrepreneur.
The best option is to review the product features for each brand to make sure they tick all of your “requirements” boxes for your specific needs/application.
Once you narrow down your list to companies that cover the data/intelligence you need, then you can contact them directly for a demo.
We recommend scheduling all of your demos in as short of a time period as possible so that you can more accurately compare various services against each other while their features and pricing are fresh in your memory.
If you use one of the above mentioned services or know of one that we forgot we would love to hear from you as we are always looking to improve our resources to make them as helpful as possible to our readers.