When WeedMaps first started it was a cool site that was essentially just a dispensary finder for cannabis shops. They caught some shit from ultra conservative groups, but pushed on to become a major player in the game. Once they started trying to compete as a shopping platform, things started getting funky. Now they are publicly traded and have made shareholder profits their main goal. Be on the lookout for some serious bullshit.
Plenty of smaller shops still use WeedMaps as their website…. which is just plain stupid. Why pay a few hundred to who knows how many thousands of dollars a month for a platform that allows your competitors to run ads over your listings? These shops have simply been fed bad info and believe that being on WeedMaps is their key to success.
Look at any local search for “dispensary near me” and you will most likely see Maps listings show up first. Google Maps is a free platform. WeedMaps listing don’t show up on Google Maps.
WeedMaps doesn’t even let you link back to your own website on their platform. They are essentially the canna version of Yelp, Home Advisor or Angie’s List.
I can rant about this for hours, but the real thing to consider is that WeedMaps has all the data they need to compete and literally crush their competition if they wanted to start buying out small shops or just start opening their own.
They have all your data. They have your customer list. They know what your customers like buying. They know when they shop and what they shop for. They have their emails, social profiles, ID’s, phone numbers and IP addresses.
They have this because people gladly give their info online to place orders. It’s really just an online reservation system, from the menu of products that they allow you to show on their platform. While it’s incredible sub par from an e-com standpoint, it’s supremely powerful from a data collection standpoint.
The main issue is that it is really just a marketplace, much like Amazon. Amazon started selling “Amazon Basics” to compete with other vendors on their platform. This put their own products in direct competition against others… for a better price.
If WeedMaps did the same thing, or started a “WeedMaps Basics” version of cannabis flower, pre-rolls, or edibles that was sold in stores, the market would quickly become a race to the bottom.
I am not predicting will happen, but it’s good to be aware.
This is why we recommend building out your own SEO on your own site.