CBD remains prevalent in the market, finding its way into products across multiple categories and delivery systems. But some products include a preponderance of iffy claims that may promise the world, but baffle consumers. That cloud of cannabinoid confusion, however, presents a terrific opportunity for retailers to cultivate consumer trust and loyalty. Through education about the ingredient and prioritizing high-quality products on their shelves that deliver reliable benefits, trust is built and category sales flourish.
Begin with the basics
Though retailers have been sifting through the finer points CBD products and information for years, much of America still does not know the difference between hemp and marijuana. The proliferation of unreliable information online does not help. Here’s where providing the knowledge they’re looking for can be a beacon toward better health. Welcome consumers to the category with a clear, simple overview of what CBD is—and isn’t—and how it works.
While both are cannabis plants, the difference between hemp and marijuana lies in the amount of the psychoactive, intoxicating compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). In the U.S., hemp plants contain 0.3% THC or less, according to the Farm Bill. Plants with more that 0.3% THC are considered marijuana. THC is just one of more than 113 naturally occurring, active compounds, called cannabinoids, in the plant. Cannabidiol (CBD)—which is not intoxicating— is another. CBD is the cannabis compound used in a variety of health and wellness products. THC is commonly found in recreational and medical marijuana products.
CBD works through the endocannabinoid system, a system of receptors and messengers that regulate a whole range of vital processes in the body from sleep and stress to immunity and pain. The compound helps keep the endocannabinoid system in balance when stress, illness and injury throw it off kilter.
Help consumers learn the lingo
Unscramble the different types of hemp extract products for shoppers who may be befuddled by terms such as “spectrum” and “isolate.” With 0% THC, CBD isolate contains a high purity CBD with zero THC. Broad spectrum CBD contains CBD, minor cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids with a requirement that all but trace amounts, less than 0.01%THC, be removed.
Full spectrum products contain other cannabinoids such as CBG, CBN and CBC along with 0.3% or less THC. These compounds work together via a symbiotic process known as the entourage effect, which multiplies their health benefits.
Stock brands that share your values
While everyone from Martha Stewart to Mike Tyson seems to have a CBD brand, the name you should be most concerned with when buying CBD products is yours. Does the brand you choose to offer share your store’s mission for efficacy and quality? Is the brand as careful with claims? How easy do they make it to learn about ingredients and processing?
The U.S. Hemp Authority is the hemp-derived CBD industry’s initiative to provide high standards, best practices and self-regulation. Its certification helps retailers find trusted brands they can offer customers with confidence. CBDistillery is certified by the organization. Trusted by more than 2 million people, the Denver-based company sources its high-quality, fairly priced CBD in the United States. Each package has a scannable QR code for easy access to third-party test results, which can also be found on the product page on the website—making reassuring test research easily available for online shoppers.
Merchandise for specific needs
Once you’ve homed in on the high-quality brands to offer online, help customers find the delivery method and specific product that best suits their lifestyle with the potential to help them most. Optimizing your store’s online product assortment with established brands with a wide range of products opens the door to customers seeking a more customized experience. The best brands will provide educational material, like this Ultimate CBD Users Guide you can leverage to guide online shoppers through their selection of tinctures, softgels, powers, gummies and topicals and provide a deep well of information about how to maximize their effects and how to determine which products may best suit their conditions. Customers also seek information about individual serving size, which depends on a multitude of factors. The best brands will provide this clearly in language you can relay to shoppers. Top, trusted brands will also offer honest, authentic, customer reviews.
While you may have to sift through a gaggle of brands to find the best to offer online, careful curation pays off. Brands with the best quality ingredients, products and transparency will also provide educational resources to help you educate customers, making your online store an easy source for the right products and a beacon of sanity and clarity amid the online CBD circus.