Many retail IT VARs have learned – the hard way, unfortunately – that traditional sales approaches don’t work as well in the cannabis vertical. Your pitch to a restaurant likely centers on POS software and a peripheral bundle. Dispensaries are different, which means you have to get creative. The RSPA Cannabis Community tackled this dilemma by asking each other during a recent online meeting, “Where are you gaining traction in the cannabis market?” Among the key insights:
- What we’re running into is that dispensary POS systems are not integrated, so we’re not selling much of anything except services and support right now – there’s not much to bolt on now. When the POS systems offer integrations, like a loyalty platform tied in with AI, that will open the entire ecosystem.
- Offering cybersecurity and a cyber strategy. That’s an urgent need from the start.
- I see digital signage being key to communicating the right message in dispensaries. They usually end up putting a sports channel or a weather channel on their TV and miss the entire point. They need to bring content up on the screen and build a sustainable digital signage solution that runs without a lot of effort.
- We’re seeing a demand for anything that drives loyalty. There’s so much competition because there are so many dispensaries.
- The volume of labels these guys do is astronomical. That’s where I’m seeing the most inquiries for RFID. We’ve seen large opportunities because states like Michigan and Mississippi are making it a requirement from the outset.
- We’re seeing a demand for QR barcoding. They need to know how the product is grown, and they want a much more educated consumer.
- Cash management is important. Cash is a major issue in the cannabis space, and our community has the opportunity to solve this.
- Facial recognition is another technology a lot of dispensaries are talking about. The liability of having a security guard as a single point of failure is too great. Facial recognition is far more reliable than one person.
- They want a centralized data warehouse; that comes into play with multi-store chains. They want a better look across the system.
- Play to your strengths and learn new technologies like the ones we’ve discussed. I’m a fan of collaboration, partnering, and teaming. If you’re not familiar with RFID, your rollout is going to go badly.
- Resellers have a huge opportunity to help cannabis retailers. I say go with your strengths but add to your strengths.
Did You Know …
The RSPA Cannabis Community has grown to over 220 members ranging from Fortune 500 organizations to SMB VARs and software developers.
To join or sponsor the RSPA Cannabis Community, email Membership@GoRSPA.org.