2023 Cannabis Industry Predictions and Trends: Online Presence, Marketing, and Customer Loyalty Through SEO and Blogging
420 Publicity welcomes guest blogger Veronica Castillo to chat with us about cannabis trends each month.
The cannabis industry continues to bloom and we can predict that this will continue. With over half the states in the United States being legal cannabis states, another two handfuls having decriminalized, and a few states having legalization in their 2023 initiatives; cannabis legalization continues to be a trend.
In a recent article discussing cannabis industry predictions for 2023 published by Norml, they state:
“2023 will be one of our busiest years yet. Several states, such as Minnesota, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania, have the potential to pass legalization early in the year through legislation. In addition, on March 7th, Oklahoma voters will decide whether or not to legalize marijuana in a special election.”
As the world continues to operate mainly online and in the metaverse, predictions and trends in cannabis as they relate to marketing, branding, and customer loyalty aren’t hard to identify. We know, see, and function in the world of digital and so it’s no surprise that an online presence is predicted as being a crucial necessity to businesses everywhere and in all industries.
But having an online presence is just a start. To be successful online, cannabis companies will need to consider the following tools/techniques/ strategies.
Establishing an Online Presence
In cannabis, techniques used vary due to legality, but even with only state by state legality, the presence of a cannabis business online is essential. Not being active online can cost business customers; it may leave them to competitors. Today, and going forward, people search/will search for businesses and products online before making any purchase decisions.
Small Biz Trends reports that 1 in 4 small businesses still don’t have a website. Search engine optimization is essential for businesses to survive online, so not having a website makes businesses non-existent to much of the world.
Small business expert Dennis Consorte says that building a sustainable brand in the 21st century is almost impossible without a website. He goes on to say:
“E-commerce has been increasing year-over-year for decades. Online shopping is more convenient than in-store shopping, and the old ways of doing business are declining. People are accustomed to researching businesses and services on the internet. The question isn’t whether you need a website. It’s whether you will survive without one and for how long,”
Marketing and Brand Awareness Through Blogging and SEO
Cannabis businesses of all kinds, including cannabis dispensaries must focus and create a website with marketing strategies that include SEO (search engine optimization). SEO is the process of increasing visibility through search engines, via search results, when people search for things like products and services.
Predictions show that online marketing/ digital marketing will be going to the websites. Marketing trends are showing that customers are seeking to learn and find answers they need when visiting websites. Search engine optimization by way of a company blog is overlooked by so many businesses in the cannabis industry but is one of the best ways to increase visibility because blogs increase a company’s presence online.
Cannabis businesses must have a SEO strategy that includes a blog so that search engines like Google, can include their websites in the results produced. Google loves websites offering insightful information; blogs can do this. They are one of the best places for customers to find information about the company, the people, the products, and the services.
Websites without a blog are missing out on web traffic increase of up to 55%. Blogging is a powerful SEO tool, and SEO is a powerful marketing tool. Google says:
“In a nutshell: SEO is an important tool for successful online marketing because it gives your business the best chance of being found, even if the optimization process takes awhile to get right.”
Experts predict that search engine optimized content like blogging will be more important in 2023 due to Google’s algorithms. Here’s what Beth Nunnington, VP of Digital PR and Content at Journey Further says about creating an online presence with a SEO strategy:
“‘Helpful content’ will continue to have a big impact as brands will really need to take a ‘human-first’ approach in order to grow organically. More investment will be made into creating guide and advice content that not only can be used to improve rankings and capture search demand, but also be utilized across paid and owned channels too.
Finally, non-direct link building – tying into the above point, we’ll see more investment being made into useful guides and resources that sit on site and can attract links naturally. These resources will be a key part of the customer journey for those who are looking for a brand that offers expertise and advice that they can trust.”
Building Customer Loyalty Through Brand Message and Blogging
Cannabis dispensaries can benefit greatly from having a marketing strategy that focuses on building customer loyalty through blogging. Cannabis industry companies/dispensaries will need a strong brand message; brand messaging builds loyalty and keeps loyalty. Key brand messages help define, differentiate, and address the benefits of the company’s products and services.
A company blog is a great place to deliver these messages with the application of SEO which will enhance a companies online presence. Intentional spending with companies that align with the same values as the customer is going to gain traction in 2023. Additionally, people want to spend their dollars with companies that let them in, tell their story, and operate with transparency. Senior Brand Journalist, Joe Gillespie points out:
“Amid great strategies, blogging can become an afterthought, which is too bad, because creating this sort of content with the goal to delight is a powerful opportunity to turn customers into lifelong customers and advocates.”
So much of the information we receive back from a Google search is located within blogs. The numbers show that blogs are deeply embedded in the day-to-day routines of internet users; 77% of them read blogs daily. Blogs are where people get information on topics they are interested in and in many cases, they serve as platforms where like-minded people can engage in discussion.
Benzinga reports the following cannabis industry predictions:
- Competitive market pressure will continue to mount, and differentiation will become essential for retailers and brands
- Brand differentiation will continue to become increasingly important for long-term success
- 2023 will be the of “Year of Partnerships”
And for each of these, establishing an online presence: website, with a marketing strategy: SEO, that includes a hub for information: a blog- reigns supreme for cannabis businesses to succeed in 2023.
Veronica Castillo is a writer from Miami, with a pre-cannabis and psychedelics background in insurance and human resources. Currently, she is a resident of the road covering cannabis, psychedelics, and plant-based lifestyles all over the U.S and soon abroad. Follow her journey on IG: www.instagram.com/vee_travelingvegcannawriter and/or on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vee-traveling-veg-canna-writer/
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