Cannabis Marketing & Delta 8 THC Marketing | How Much Does Lefly & Weedmaps Charge to Advertise?
Greetings my name is James Meshach, the cannabis marketing director for Isenselogic.com. I am also a former medical dispensary owner, and Microsoft Database, engineer. Having experience in running a medical dispensary I know what it takes to grow a recreational or medical marijuana business by using dispensary internet marketing. Besides word of mouth, billboards, and magazines the majority of your new customers are going to find you through the internet. The three main choices available to dispensary owners are the following. I have collected information from my clients and across the internet to help you make a more informed decision on where to spend your cannabis marketing dollars.
The reason you found this page is because Leafly and Weed maps use a hidden pricing system to try to maximize the amount of money they can charge for each city and region. For example, they will tell dispensary (A) in Seattle if they want to be listed in the top 10 it will cost them $1500 a month. Then they will go to the next dispensary (B) and tell them if they want to be in the top 3 it will cost them $5000 a month. Then there sales agents will try to get $20,000 per month to be listed number 1 from dispensary (c). Each pricing point will be different for each city that they cover. Where smaller cities will cost less large markets like Denver or Los Angeles you can expect to pay out your nose if you want to be listed in the top three positions. While the basic cost to be on these platforms will range from $420 to $800 dollars per month in order to get into the top 3 positions the cost will be much higher. Below we have posted links from across the internet on what other dispensary owners are reporting along with an analysis of which dispensary marketing plan works best.
One Reddit user is reporting that Weed Maps is charging $420 Per Month for the basic listings, which include menu integration. To be listed first expect those numbers to go up to $10,000 plus per month depending on what city you’re in.
One of our SEO clients in the Seattle area is reporting that Leafly is charging recreational marijuana dispensary $750 to $10,000 a month in that region. He did not have the prices for Weedmaps but you can assume it’s around the same range. In the bigger markets like Colorado and California, you can expect to pay more with reports of up to $50,000 a month in the Los Angeles area.
I’ve spoken with several other brands today and Weedmaps Pricing has quoted one brand $30,000/month to be listed in all of California. Another national brand was quoted over $100,000/month to be listed.
The first thing you will want to know is which option will bring in the most customers. The second thing you will want to know is how much of your advertising budget do you want to spend per month on each listing..
depends on where you want your listing but gold, silver, bronze listings can run from between 10-20k depending on the city. possibly more. basic middle pack listings easily run 3k+.
The cost of Leafly.com
- Leafy charges dispensaries to advertise by the number of impressions and also is dependent on how large the target market city is. The only way to truly find out how many Leafly charges for your dispensary is to contact their website and get a media package. I know one of my clients located in the city of Tacoma Washington Leafly charges $3000 a month to be listed number 3 for that market. Tacoma is considered a medium-size city so you can expect the prices to be higher for a city like Seattle and probably quadruple for large cities like Los Angeles or San Francisco. By doing a search on the internet I found that one business owner is paying Leafly $10,000 a month for 4 dispensaries for their Bronze package which would list real-world number 3. This comes out to $2500 a month per location.
- See: https://www.reddit.com/r/weedbiz/comments/70eove/weedmaps_insane_new_pricing_model
How to Add Your Marijuana or Delta 8 THC Dispensary to Leafly
Click to the dispensary solution page of Leafly and then click the button that says “claim your dispensary”. After you fill out your Business Name, Contact information, address, and phone number a representative from Leafly will call you to go over pricing and option plans in your initial setup package. The prices and plans are always changing since they try to exploit the fact that they keep their prices secret the same model for Weedmaps.
The Cost of Weedmaps.com
When I first started my medical marijuana dispensary in 2014 “Weedmaps.com was charging anywhere from $400 to $1500 a month depending on position and market size. With the legalization of marijuana, those prices have skyrocketed. Now we learn that Weedmaps.com is charging up to 30,000 a month for some cities in California and up to 100,000 a month for national vendor brands. Most smaller cities can expect to pay anywhere from $1000 to $3000 per month for the basic packages. Recently I spoke with a Weedmaps representative who confirmed that some dispensaries in Los Angeles are spending 30,000 a month to be number one on their directory. She explained that Weedmaps started in California and therefore has a larger market share and can demand these higher rates. See Reddit Link above for reference.
How to Add Your Marijuana or Delta 8 THC Dispensary to Weedmaps
To get started you need to make a request to have your recreational or medical marijuana dispensary to be included in the Weedmaps director. Click here to add your dispensary. You will first need to create a free account and then add your dispensary details.
After you add your information a representative will contact you on how to get your account open. Once you select a plan you will go on a month-to-month contract and they will take your credit card information so you can be billed monthly.
Real World Reality Check
Step 1: Determine what medium the average Cannabis Customer uses to find your local recreational or medical marijuana dispensary.
According to the nonprofit group Local Seach Association, the number one way cannabis consumers find dispensaries are through the search engines coming out at 65 percent if you count mobile search it’s even higher approaching 80 percent.
Step 2: Determine what are the top searched terms for your type of business. By using the Moz.com keyword search tool which is free, we come up with the following list for your cannabis marketing efforts.
Step 3 Go to Google and Type Dispensar Near [Your City] For this example we use one of our clients Green Collar Cannabis located in Tacoma Washington.
The top three positions are what we call the 3-pack, these are positions that can NOT be paid for to google, it is what they determine are the best match for the search based on hundreds of different factors. The most important factor is the location of the searcher. For example, If you searched for (dispensary near me) in south Tacoma, the dispensary closest to the searcher would come up first. There are over 40 dispensaries in Tacoma and so far no Delta 8 THC shops, so if you are not in the top three it is highly unlikely the user would find your store and that customer would go to your competitors. Remember the local search association chart. 33 percent of the customers go to the first listed result, it drops to a whopping 12% for position 2 and only 8 percent for position number 3. This chart would also apply to the first dispensaries listed in Weed Maps or Leafly, that is why they charge some dispensaries $50,000 a month to be in position one for larger markets.
Step 4 Seach for your business using iPhone
I Phones use their own separate search engine for local businesses, if your business does not show up on iPhone Map searchers you are missing out on any customer who uses their phone for local business direction searches. To make sure your business is searchable on Iphones register your business at Apple Places.
Many of your competitors will not know this and you can get ahead of the pack with this simple tip. For example, if we search Dispensaries Near Seattle on Google we get over 100 dispensaries but only 20 show up on Apple iPhone Searches!
Step 5: Take Polling from new customers to determine how customers are finding your cannabis dispensary.
After you determine where your business stands on the primary cannabis marketing internet searches you need to make a decision on what is the best method to increase dispensary sales. Isenselogic.com recommends that each dispensary take a poll on new incoming customers for two weeks to determine how their store is being found. This will also provide a BASELINE or starting point on how their dispensary advertising budget is being utilized. Most of our customers find that 80 percent of all new customers come from Google Search. The rest is divided up between Billboard, Directory Sites, word of mouth, and drive-byes.
One of the primary ways that Isenselogic.com stands out over other cannabis marketing firms is that the owner ACTUALLY owned a dispensary and had to deal with different state city and zoning laws that do not apply to regular brick and mortar operations. Many cities will have bans on recreational and medical marijuana dispensaries and you can use this to your advantage by using our special search engine optimization techniques to show up in surrounding cities. While your competitors ignore these dry cities we hit them hard to bring you more traffic and revenue. In the graphic below the city of Tacoma allows marijuana dispensaries but the nearby city of Lakewood Washington does not. Also the major city and military base of Joint Base Fort Lewis Mccord does not allow dispensaries so your dispensary SEO efforts can be maximized in these dry cities.
Even though Green Collar’s physical address is in Tacoma Washington and the city of Lakewood WA has banned dispensaries by using Isenselogic.com custom cannabis marketing techniques we can have your business appear in most surrounding cities giving you a HUGE advantage over your competitors.
Free SEO competitor report for your marijuana or Delta 8 THC dispensary, a $500 dollar value. Offer ends 12/15/2021. Fill out the form or call 1-425-351-1517
The Cost of Search Engine Optimization in your cannabis marketing plan.
You can find a lot of different price ranges from different SEO companies with start packages running from $500 a month all the way up to 10,000 a month and above. A lot of it depends on how big the target market is and the range of competition for the targeted keyword. SEO companies offer different types of services with different packages. The primary packages run from $500 to $5000 per month and have the plan of offering the business an opportunity for steady growth as the Google rankings start to raise and provide more clicks to the business. Also, expect to pay a premium if you have multiple locations for your business along with multiple sites. See https://www.audiencebloom.com/how-much-does-seo-cost/
Which of These Three Marketing Options Provide The Most Customers?
There are two ways to determine your cost per customer from different cannabis marketing internet options.
One way is to ask your new customers how they found you and keep a list and then add up the percentages. The other way is by SEO reports and Google Webmaster click-through reports. Every store should at least 1 week per month survey incoming customers and keep track of how they found your store. Some might find you through magazine ads, Billboards, Weedmaps, Leafly, Google, Yahoo, or Bing Searches. One of my favorite cannabis / Delta 8 THC SEO reports is the referrer page report which shows precise information on how new customers are finding your business.
|Top Referral Traffic|
This is actually real-world data of one of our clients Green Collar Cannabis located in Tacoma Washington.
The first number is direct clicks which means customers actually typed in Green Collar Cannabis or some other variation of the brand name to reach the website. The numbers below that are of most interest to management. By far the largest number of traffic is coming from Google at 4366 clicks per month with the rest of the referrers dropping off sharply after that. One thing you should notice is that Weedmaps and Leafly don’t even show up in the top 10. Even the free website Potguide.com is bringing in more customers than the primary industry leaders. How could that be?
Well let’s take a look at an actual search from Google and see what comes up
When we Search Edmonds Pot Shops we see that Google presents its three-pack FIRST above all other searches. This use to be a 7 pack but google reduced it last year to force more businesses to pay for Google Ad words. Next below that we see what’s called organic results. These are natural Google listings that are not paid ads. This is important because 90 percent of consumers do NOT click on ads. Consumers have been trained to TRUST google listings that come up first because they think hey if Google Trust them so should I. The first website we see is Potguide.com which would make perfect sense because that is the highest-ranked site in our referral list besides the major search engines and social media sites.
Leafly.com doesn’t come up until position 8 and Weedmaps isn’t even listed on the first page. From the chart above we can see that the first organic listing on search engines receives 36 percent of all clicks dropping in half for position 2 with positions 3 through 20 followings..
Here is a comparison of the Search Engine cannabis marketing share from August 2016 vs. July 2016, with the previous month’s numbers in parentheses:
- Google: 79.88% (79.17%)
- Bing: 9.9% (10%)
- Yahoo!: 8.34% (8.87%)
- AOL: 0.84% (0.88%)
- DuckDuckGo: 0.41% (0.43%)
- Other: 0.62% (0.65%)
As of 2016 Google has 80 percent of the market share for online searches. From my experience, the majority of recreational marijuana users will use their smartphones and then Google to find local businesses. Think about it? What do you use to find local businesses? Everybody knows Google. Only a few percentages of consumers are going to use Weedmaps or Leafly directly to find a place to buy marijuana. From the data above we can determine that SEO would be the best way for any small business to invest in finding new customers. Leafly.com and Weedmaps.com almost seem to bring in zero customers which do not cover the cost of marketing for the local cannabis business. Like I said before you should definitely ask new customers if they found you by using Weedmaps or Leafly I think you will be shocked by the results.
Isenselogic.com specializes in Recreational and Medical Marijuana Search Engine Optimization. Our packages for dispensaries start at $500 per month for small cities and max at $5000 for a month for large cities like Los Angeles or Denver. Check out some of our real-world results for some of our clients by visiting our homepage and call to receive a free marijuana SEO audit and competitor report. Whether you use our firm or another company don’t wait to start your cannabis SEO program, 40 percent of all customers do not search for a new marijuana dispensary after they find one. So every day you wait is losing market share. Isenselogic.com only does one dispensary per city as not to create a conflict of interest.