How to Increase CBD Sales at Your Independent Pharmacy


Tips to help your pharmacy stand out as a knowledgeable CBD retailer.

Have you been sitting on the sidelines when it comes to selling cannabidiol (CBD) products in your pharmacy? Or maybe you took action and ordered products that have been really good at collecting dust. No matter where you are in your CBD journey, read on for tips to get your pharmacy ready to sell those products, help patients, and boost profit.

Sexy Sells

Patients pay for the items they want. Although it seems logical that they should pay only for things they need, our brains don’t work that way. As a pharmacy owner, your job is to make patients want the products you offer. And you can persuade them a lot more easily when you offer singular or exciting products.

You might be thinking that all CBD products seem the same. So how can you offer something unique? Often, it will be in how you present the products to your patients. Do you have exciting signage or bag stuffers? What about an enthusiastic employee that can draw your customers into a conversation about CBD? These marketing efforts alone can make a big difference.

A high-quality product from a great company is a must. When talking with potential suppliers of CBD products, ask what makes them special. Don’t just accept the typical answers of quality and meeting minimum legal standards. Those features should be a given and are not remarkable. What else do they offer?

Whichever CBD products and companies you choose to carry, make sure they have an exciting, sexy hook that will make it easier to promote it to your patients.

Focus First

CBD is a clinically exciting product. It offers promise across many areas of medicine, as well as the potential to help improve patient quality of life. The current and upcoming research is exciting but can become easily overwhelming.

Instead of providing a laundry list of ailments that CBD can address, start by focusing on just 1 area for initial improvement, such as sleep. Poor sleep affects a large portion of the population; this unfortunate fact means that you, the pharmacist, have the opportunity to help a lot of people in your community.

What does this focus look like? Make sure your signage, staff, social media posts, and other marketing focus on the single benefit (eg, improved sleep). When your community and patients see your focus on an issue, it will make them feel more comfortable about coming to you for a solution. People don’t like being sold to, but they do like being educated. Share sleep statistics or healthy sleep habits; showcase how much you know about their problem, then invite them to come in to evaluate the solutions you offer.

Moreover, focusing on 1 issue also draws in parties interested in other issues. If you keep talking about sleep, eventually you will get questions about whether a particular solution can help with pain too. Focusing helps the outside world see you as an expert. Additionally, people will feel comfortable coming to you with other needs.

Activity Creates Profit

OTC products don’t fly off the shelves by themselves. To increase CBD sales, your entire staff must be active participants. Have a team motto: “No Opportunity Left Behind.” Work to create a habit, so your employees listen for the right chance to bring up your focused solution.

Instill in your employees the concept of “every patient, every visit.” We should be offering up solutions at every encounter. Someone always needs something. It might be lip balm or it might be that CBD sleep solution. You will never know if you aren’t actively engaging with your customers at every opportunity.

Here are some questions to consider asking:

  • Do you offer any unique dosage forms (vaginal, bath bombs, shampoo)?
  • Do you have a pharmacy guarantee?
  • Do you have a patient guarantee?
  • Have you performed any clinical studies on your specific formula?
  • How much and what type of marketing or sales support do you offer?
  • Do you sell directly to the consumer or on Amazon or other sites?
  • Are you knowledgeable about the various state laws? (Pro tip: It’s a red flag if they automatically say, “We’re legal everywhere.”)
  • What type of educational support do you offer to pharmacy staff?
  • How is your CBD sourced and from where?
  • Is it from licensed industrial hemp farms?
  • Are the plants ever “hot” (ie, over the allowable limit for tetrahydrocannabinol)?
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