Online Payments for dispensaries in Colorado
In an effort to improve operational efficiencies and perhaps alter your cannabis purchasing and consumption habits, the retail marijuana business is implementing new regulations in the new year, ten years after recreational marijuana became legal in Colorado.
The new regulations, which will be implemented by the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division, are based on feedback received from over 300 written content submissions and a series of stakeholder work group meetings that were held last year. They are scheduled to take effect on Monday.
What to Expect with Online Marijuana Product Sales
Perhaps the most significant development in the industry for both customers and dispensaries in 2024 will be the legalization of online marijuana product sales.
Customers were still compelled to pay in person for their items even though online ordering became permitted in Colorado late last year.
Customers will be asked to provide their name and date of birth when making an online purchase, thanks to the new online option. At the time of pickup, the business is obligated to confirm that the customer’s identity corresponds with the details given for the order.
The state’s marijuana enforcement division aims to have more stakeholder meetings this year “with a focus on regulatory efficiencies and operational streamlining measures,” and it modifies marijuana policies every year.
Retail marijuana tax revenues received by the state have fallen sharply over the previous six years, coinciding with the adjustments slated for 2024.
The Colorado Department of Revenue reports that the state’s tax revenue from the retail marijuana market hit a record low last year, falling short of the $247.3 million earned in 2017.
After receiving more than $325 million in 2022 and $423.4 million in 2021, the state’s revenue dropped to little over $255 million in 2023.
In times of public health, safety, or welfare emergencies, the state’s Marijuana Enforcement Division will be able to embargo controlled marijuana according to the new regulations. Furthermore, following notification and a hearing, the division will be authorized to destroy embargoed marijuana.
All marijuana retail packaging is now required to include a “use-by date,” another significant regulation change this year.
A product’s expiration date is not the same as the date it should reach its peak freshness and quality, but rather the date it is scheduled to attain.
Streamlining Operations and Regulations for Dispensaries in Colorado
To further streamline the industry’s operations and regulations, the 2024 guidelines address the licensing of marijuana enterprises.
For instance, production facilities will be able to trade with a broader variety of state-licensed marijuana business organizations, as well as entities in states where recreational marijuana is legal, according to recent state legislation.
While testing is already mandatory for all retail-ready cannabis harvests and production batches per state regulations, licensees will soon be able to request less stringent testing if they pay a fee and provide an attestation form demonstrating their familiarity with the regulations.
An ounce of flower, eight grams of retail concentrate, and one hundred milligrams of edible marijuana products will be the maximum amounts that customers at marijuana hospitality establishments in the state can purchase in 2024.
Companies in Steamboat Springs, where “cannabis clubs” are illegal, will be exempt from the rule. However, residents of Denver, the only Colorado municipality to legalize marijuana hospitality businesses, will be able to buy and consume more cannabis than they were before.
How Can SEO help with dispensaries that allow for online payments?
Making sure your site is optimized for online searches and letting your customers know that they can pay online is a great start. Your maps listing should also reflect the news that your dispensary is now accepting online payments.
Feel free to contact us today to discuss this more in detail if you have questions. We have been in this game since 2016 and love working with small business owners that are looking for better marketing solutions and better local SEO.
Platforms that Allow Cannabis Dispensaries to Collect Online Payments
Just about any POS platform is set up for online ordering (with payment on pickup). Even WeedMaps allows this.
ACH seems to be a very popular pitch, but user adoption is still low.
Pin Debit may or may not work depending on what card you use.
There are more options for dispensaries out there that can integrate, but it all depends on your Point of Sale.
While more dispensaries in Colorado are already using any number of online POS or Menu platforms, we invite you to check out BudPlug as an option to integrate into your website. Odds are it will save you both time, money and frustration.