With the advent of federal hemp legalization via the landmark 2018 Farm Bill, a plethora of industrial hemp and hemp-derived products – such as cannabidiol or CBD – have entered the space. As well, several retailers and distributors have sprouted like wildfire, advantaging the green light for the botanical industry.
Of course, the enthusiasm is completely understandable. Prior to the Farm Bill, hemp and CBD manufacturers and retailers operated under a cloud of uncertainty. While the 2016 general election produced a record number of states legalizing cannabis to varying degrees, the maligned plant was still considered a controlled substance by federal authorities.
Though cannabis today is still a Schedule I drug, the Farm Bill made a federal exemption for industrial hemp and products derived from hemp, thus opening the door for myriad CBD products. Now, with CBD retailers owning legal credibility, they have greater access to financial institutions that were previously reticent about involvement with state-endorsed but not federally authorized cannabis businesses.
Along with the explosive momentum of CBD retailers came enthusiasm for a particular business format: e-commerce. As you know, e-commerce firms have jumped to the forefront of the mainstream business and consumer culture. According to the Federal Reserve Economic Data, e-commerce represents nearly 11% of all retail sales in the U.S.
Naturally, CBD enthusiasts also gravitate toward online purchases. For one thing, buying anything online is incredibly convenient: you can skip the time needed to sit in traffic, fight for a parking spot, and wait in line, all to sit back in traffic to go home. With CBD e-commerce, you simply purchase your favorite product and wait for its arrival to your door.
As well, buying CBD online is a discreet way to enjoy cannabidiol in the privacy of your own home. While support for cannabis has only grown in recent years, it remains a controversial subject to many people. Therefore, it’s better to play it safe and purchase your CBD in the most inconspicuous manner possible.
Excellent Customer Service
In traditional brick-and-mortar retail businesses, experts have long advised that it’s all about location, location, location. In other words, you want potential customers to be able to find your company quickly and conveniently. Furthermore, prime real estate areas organically produce more foot traffic. Logically, the brick-and-mortars live or die by foot traffic.
But with online CBD retailers, the emphasis is on people, people, people. While e-commerce firms offer incredible convenience to their customers, they are at a disadvantage because they may not have a robust physical footprint. In many ways, potential customers must get a feel for the organization and ultimately take a leap of faith.
Online CBD retailers can distinguish themselves from the competition by having an easily accessible customer service network. For instance, Nug Republic has a customer service line that is available from 10am PST (1pm EST) to 3pm PST (6pm EST), Monday through Friday. Such broad coverage allows customers from anywhere in the U.S. to reach out and talk to someone.
And by someone, that means a human being. Nug Republic is proud to hire vetted experts in the botanical industry, thereby promoting the local economy. Additionally, Nug Republic does not outsource their customer service, so you always speak to a compassionate and knowledgeable expert.
Reputation Is Everything
In the cannabidiol space, reputation is everything. For decades, proponents of cannabis-based therapies have evangelized the message of the botanical industry’s benefits. Only now has the plant received the legal recognition for which many advocates have waited long years.
Still, challenges in the space remain. Several communities still regard CBD with skepticism due to its scandalized connection with THC, or the psychoactive compound within the marijuana plant. As such, truly reputable online retailers (or any reputable retailer for that matter) place credibility and reputation above all else.
Thus, one of the easy clues that you’re not dealing with a proper CBD retailer is a lack of courtesy and professionalism. The emphasis should not be on hard selling tactics and the pursuit of a quick buck. Rather, an authentic CBD retailer will get to know their customer and direct them to the most appropriate product or platform.
That’s one of the many attributes that sets apart Nug Republic. Their customer service team doesn’t operate on an upsell mentality. Instead, they get to understand what the customer wants to finetune their best options. Of course, that may involve a recommendation for a premium product. But often times, Nug Republic will down-sell to a less expensive alternative if that product is proven to perform just as well as its more expensive counterpart.
On one hand, such a process takes away from immediate sales. Yet the Nug Republic difference is that they are relationship builders. Nothing hurts a business more than a bad rap. More importantly, such a long-term strategy indicates confidence that Nug Republic will earn lifetime clients, not just a quick buck.
And to get there, they can’t afford to deliver anything less than the best. Ultimately, this is a win-win for both you and the broader CBD ecosystem.
High Quality Brands
The major catalyst in the recent so-called “vaping crisis” is black market vaping products. In a bid to achieve a cheap high, many vape users bought off-brand platforms that did not conform to state and federal laws. We’ve seen the consequences of such personal actions.
But in mentioning this, we have an important lesson to consider. The best online CBD retailers would never sully their reputation – as mentioned up above – with substandard products. Sure, a retailer could make a quick buck on high volume with these non-standard products. However, the risks in engaging in these activities are catastrophic.
Therefore, one of the easiest steps to take to ensure that you’re dealing with a proper CBD retailer is to vet their products. In order to meet federal regulations and guidelines, cannabidiol-based products must have certain characteristics, such as no claims in treating or healing specific illnesses or conditions. Any product saying otherwise is violating federal law, and therefore, the quality of that product is extremely suspect.
Also, check out your target CBD products’ ingredient labels: the content of the CBD (and any cannabinoids, if isolate or broad spectrum CBD) should match what is advertised. As well, you should consult independent laboratory tests regarding the quality and content of CBD in your choice products.
Naturally, any CBD retailer worth their salt, such as Nug Republic, will only sell vetted, quality products. With so many choices out there, it’s difficult to find the right one. But with reputable retailers, you have the confidence that whatever you pick, the product will only be sourced from the industry’s top players.