headset Archives - Green Market Report

Debra BorchardtApril 22, 2022
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9min22800

Several cannabis data providers have confirmed that this year’s April 20 holiday was the highest ever – in sales. Despite falling in the middle of the week, sales were determined to be significantly higher than an average Wednesday and the highest day of sales in the past four years. Perhaps because some of these states have more mature markets. shoppers were spending slightly less on average, but there were more people shopping.

Cannabis consumer product preferences are also shifting year over year as more customers are reaching for something different from traditional flower for 420. Edibles and concentrates are winning over consumers. The data providers say that this can be partially attributed to the growing maturity of both cannabis markets and the consumers within them. The East Coast is quickly becoming the hot spot of the cannabis industry as Massachusetts won the day. While online ordering continues to have fans even after the pandemic, cannabis consumers continue to love going to their brick & mortar store.

Black Market Certified 420 party in NYC Photo by Dave Allocca

 

420 Sales

Headset reported that in the US, the average cannabis store experienced 148% higher sales on 4/20 than over the previous four Wednesdays. Average discounting increased by 72%.
In Canada, the average cannabis store saw sales grow by 65% and average discounts rise by a whopping 92%.

In both countries, Headset said that sales growth was driven primarily by increases in total transaction volume. In the US, the median cannabis store saw a 107% increase in transaction volume on 4/20 in comparison to the previous four weeks. In Canada transaction volume at the median store increased by 57%. However, in the US customers purchased more per transaction on 4/20, with the median store seeing a 19% increase in average basket size. In Canada, average basket size at the median store only increased by 3%.

As usual on holidays, Headset said that beverages were the top-performing products in both countries. On 4/20 sales of Beverages grew by 110% in Canada and by 176% in the US. Pre-Rolls also performed well in both markets with 74% growth in Canada and 150% growth in the US. In Canada, Edibles were the second-best performing product category on 4/20 with 83% sales growth. Concentrates took the silver medal in the US with 155% growth.

Flowhub’s data agreed with what Headset experienced. The company said that Edibles saw a major jump in popularity in just a year, climbing 5%. Flower was also less popular this 420, while concentrates had a slight jump year over year. “It’s clear that consumers are beginning to move away from traditional products like flower and are consuming more edibles and concentrates instead. There is also a slight decrease in accessories, clones, and seeds – potentially caused by a maturity in markets, people don’t need as many accessories if they’re regularly consuming.”

Flowhub also noted that online orders made up 3% of all transactions on 420 this year, the rest were in-store. Also, more than twice as many online orders were placed on 420 in 2022 vs. 420 in 2021.

Jane Technologies reported that stores using Jane in both 2021 & 2022 saw an 11% increase in online sales. Overall Jane had ~35% growth in GMV between 2021 & 2022. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 34% increase in edible sales. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 43% increase in vape sales. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 22% increase in flower sales. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 10% increase in extract sales.

Jane said that the average cart size on 4/20 increased 15% compared to the previous four Wednesdays and overall sales on 4/20 increased 160% compared to the previous four Wednesdays.

East Coast Wins

Flowhub reported that the East Coast was recording very high average revenues per location. Flowhub wrote that “This is likely due to how new the markets are and the lack of competition. There are also likely high numbers of people driving in from out of state to purchase products in these states whereas states like California and Colorado are more mature and accustomed to cannabis. Oklahoma’s very low average sales per location can be attributed to the massive number of licenses in the state. The competition is too high for locations to haul in the same revenues as lower licensed states.”

Top-selling states according to Flowhub were as follows:
● Massachusetts had the highest average revenue per location on 420 of all Flowhub markets. The state also had the highest average basket value ($130).
● Maryland had the second-highest average revenue per location on 420 of all Flowhub markets.
● Oklahoma had the lowest average revenue per location of all Flowhub markets.
● Some states with very high sales compared to an average Wednesday:
○ Michigan’s average sales were 175% higher than an average Wednesday.
○ Maryland’s average sales were 156% higher than an average Wednesday.
○ California’s sales were 134% higher than an average Wednesday.

Jane also reported that it experienced year-over-year growth for these states: Arizona, Michigan, California, Colorado, Illinois, and Florida.
i. Arizona
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 100% increase in sales YoY.
ii. Illinois
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 54% increase in sales YoY.

iii. Pennsylvania
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw an 18% increase in sales YoY.
iv. Florida
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 10% increase in sales YoY.
v. Michigan
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 remained flat in sales YoY.
vi. California
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 15% decrease in sales YoY.
vii. Colorado
1. Stores using Jane in both ‘21 & ‘22 saw a 20% decrease in sales YoY.

Ordering Trends

All of these dispensaries have to place orders for inventory and Leaflink has excellent data that shows how the companies were preparing for the big day. The company said that overall, sales trended upwards in the weeks prior to 4/20 in 2022. “Sales increased week-over-week, starting on 3/27 with 6.1% growth. The next week sales grew 6.9%, and an additional 2.7% in the final full week of sales prior to 4/20. Each week set a new high watermark for total sales in LeafLink, and the week of 4/10 is now the biggest week for sales in LeafLink history.”

When it came to specific state data, Leaflink noted that the vast majority of states saw sales grow in the 30 days before 4/20 with Colorado being the only exception. States included below (CO excluded) grew by varying percentages from 14.9% in Washington to 44.3% in Massachusetts over this time period. Colorado saw sales decrease by 2.3% in the 30 days prior to 4/20 compared to the previous period.

Black Market Certified 420 party in NYC photo by Dave Allocca

 


StaffMarch 3, 2022
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9min8570

Headset

 

JOCELYN SHELTRAW – DIRECTOR OF INDUSTRY RELATIONS, HEADSET

 

What is your proudest accomplishment in the cannabis industry? 

Being a connector and bringing the community together, especially during the pandemic where so many people were lacking human connection. I facilitated in-person gatherings and digital meetups at a time when people were alienated because of Covid, but also struggling through the turmoil of the cannabis industry. A lot of people in our industry were reaching out asking if what they were experiencing in their business was like others, and I was able to help people feel less alone by sharing insights and bringing people together. 

 

Do you feel that the cannabis industry has more opportunities for female-identifying people than other industries? 

I don’t know that I would say that the cannabis industry has more opportunities for women, but it is an industry unlike any other I’ve been a part of because it’s an industry built on community, and because of its prior illegal nature, there’s an air of non-judgment, and therefore acceptance. 

 

Think about it…up until a few short years ago cannabis was illegal, and so the type of person working in the industry generally was someone comfortable with discomfort. There’s a camaraderie that happens between people navigating unknowns, and that often overpowers someone’s gender or ethnicity. 

I came from the ad tech industry, and while there were about even rates of women in executive positions, it felt much more closed-minded to me. It felt hierarchical. Maybe this is our American values changing, or the fact that people in cannabis are bound by similar beliefs, but there does seem to be a shift happening where people in the industry are building companies on a culture of openness and acceptance. 

 

Do you feel you have to work twice as hard as male colleagues or do you think the industry has moved past that?

I don’t feel I have to work twice as hard in executing on the core functions of my job, however, I do operate in an environment that requires more thoughtfulness, which is ultimately more work for me in certain areas. 

I don’t know that a man has to think as much about how he words an email, how he comes across in meetings, how he dresses, how close he gets to another when he speaks, how late he stays out during conferences or events. I think about all these things, all the time. It’s a lot of exerted energy. 

For example, I co-founded an executive cannabis meetup called CannaPac and when I’m co-hosting I have to think about all the aforementioned, but I also have to be cognizant of how to drive more diversity of attendees. It’s been a challenge…our first event we had about 80 men and 10 women attend. This has shifted over time with more conscious planning. 

Ultimately, people gravitate to people that are similar to them. This is why men, or people in positions of power, have a responsibility to lead with diversity in mind. You have to be proactive in changing the environment, and I believe the companies/programs that do that will be more successful in the long run. 

What was your biggest challenge in business and how did you overcome it?

My biggest challenge in business is learning to navigate my ego so I can be the leader I want to be. 

I’m a fiery type-A personality…I’m passionate, a perfectionist, and have high expectations, which can be great qualities in a leader, but I’ve learned these traits have to be managed thoughtfully. 

I’ve found myself in situations where my passion and perspective don’t take into consideration my colleagues’ differing, yet valid points of view. For example, I tend to get hyper-protective of our brand at Headset and want every touchpoint with our team and company to be thoughtful and perfect. This is a great goal, but when things are as busy and unstable as they are in this industry, it can be hard to prioritize attention to detail over the speed of execution. 

I’m learning that if I lead with empathy and understanding, I get the end result that yields a better outcome for the team and company.

What have you or your company done to help give more opportunities for women?

At Headset, our founders have strived to create a diverse work environment…almost half of our leadership team is women. I’m proud that our company is well above industry averages. 

For me personally, I’ve mentioned the CannaPac executive meetups and that I’ve been working to increase female attendees. We had an event on February 22 in LA and we had 3x as many women as our first event. This is great progress as many people come to the events to network with other leaders, and to find new jobs or opportunities. To increase the percentage of women in executive roles, there needs to be more connection to break down social barriers. 

What are your personal goals for 2022?

I rarely set goals for myself. Goals suggest I have to be working toward something and I prefer to live my life in the moment, with the “goal” being to live as intentionally and consciously as possible. 

Living intentionally means being thoughtful about my physical, spiritual, intellectual, and mental well-being. I live this way because I find that the more present I am, the more I know and take care of myself, the more people I know and treat well…the more a fulfilling life manifests itself.

The end result of living life in the present is that I don’t live in a state of fear or anxiety over what my life should be like. My “goals” right now are to focus my time on the things that bring me fulfillment…my partner Claudio Miranda (he’s also a part of the cannabis industry), spending time with my family and friends, destigmatizing cannabis because I believe there is far more positive impact to our society than negative, helping build Headset so our team can have a successful exit and contribute positive growth to the industry, and fulfilling my creative outlets by devoting time to playing music, writing, and photography. 

I often feel like people overcomplicate what life should be about…just be present and enjoy all the beauty, good and bad, that your life has to offer. 

 


Julie AitchesonFebruary 7, 2022
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Data from a January Headset report shows that female cannabis consumers are on a continued ascendant in the U.S., increasing 55% from Q1 2020 to Q4 2021. This growing consumer demographic is even more robust in Canada, where both Gen Z and Millennial females posted even higher sales than in the United States. In fact, female Canadian consumers contributed to 36.7% of cannabis spending in Q4 2021– 4.1% higher than in the U.S. Consumption among males has also grown, albeit at a smaller percentage, while the female market share has increased notably over the past two years. This reflects that the statistic that only a third of total cannabis sales are currently to women is changing at a brisk rate. 

Within the female demographic, Headset’s data shows that Female Baby Boomers are outspending their Gen Z counterparts, with average transaction sizes bigger by 41% in Q4 2021, even given nearly identical average item prices. Female Gen Z sales saw an accelerated boom in 2020 at 151%. In terms of product category, women showed a strong preference for topicals, with nearly half of their cannabis expenditures occurring within this subset. Women also claimed a higher wallet share than males in the edibles category.

Cannabis companies are sitting up and listening to this data and marketing their products accordingly in order to take advantage of the rising tide of female consumers. Women want safer, easier to use (and conceal), and more regulated products.  Petra’s microdose THC mints and Rhythm cannabis’ little black jars of evaporated bud led the charge back in 2021 and are experiencing both strong sales and widespread imitation for their efforts. Kristi Palmer, the co-founder of Kiva Confections, celebrates this fortuitous turn in the market. “Cannabis brands and companies are getting with the program and professionalizing in a way that welcomes women into the space, thank God.” This seems to be creating a feedback loop that serves both women and manufacturers, as new, female-driven products are consumed at higher rates for bigger returns and more women see themselves represented in what the cannabis industry has to offer.

Another influencing factor in the growing numbers of women seeking out cannabis may be the fact that, according to a study published by the Journal of Women’s Health, women are quicker than men to replace prescription pain killers with medical marijuana. Rising distrust in the pharmaceutical industry and its motivations for developing and promoting the products that it puts out, not to mention the steep rise in mental health concerns due to the pandemic could very well be fueling the rise of the female consumer, which looks set to endure throughout 2022 and beyond.

 


Debra BorchardtJanuary 6, 2022
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Cannabis data providers have weighed in on the 2021 holiday sales for dispensaries with some surprising results. The data included the Thanksgiving holiday and then tracked sales through to the end of Christmas. Most agreed that sales increased in 2021 despite the resurgence of the new Covid fear with the variant Omicron. Consumers upped their cannabis shopping throughout the month of December causing Christmas week comparisons to be less strong than in the past. Still, sales remained elevated leading up to Christmas in both the Canadian and U.S. markets.

Increased Sales

Headset said that its data showed that Canada saw a rise in sales of more than 26% while the US saw an increase of 17% during the holiday month. Headset reported that in Canada, sales were up by 8.9% versus the previous four Fridays. In the US, sales increased by 6.0%. In Canada, Saskatchewan had the largest increase in sales, up 12% over the previous four Fridays. In the US, Michigan had the strongest showing with a 13.7% increase in total sales. 

LeafLink is a wholesale cannabis platform and as such has visibility into orders that licensed retailers place from the brands they carry. In December, sales through LeafLink increased by 6.8% when compared to the average growth rate over the prior three months – signaling that the holiday season positively impacted sales this year. 

Cannabis delivery company Lantern said it saw consumers start stocking up their holiday stashes earlier this season. Specifically the company noted that sales started to increase the second weekend of December with a +56% increase in daily order volume. “That trend continued through December, a +26% lift in order volume and +7% increase in AOV the week before Christmas, peaking the day before Christmas Eve with a +51% lift compared to our daily average. Lantern reported a +110% lift in order volume the three days before New Year’s Eve vs. three days prior, peaking three days before NYE with a +56% lift in daily order volume.

Springbig reported that starting from a week before Christmas and going into New Year’s Day, it saw (excluding Christmas day) $276 million in total sales with a daily average gross of $20.82mm. This was an 11% increase over the same period last year.In terms of how big the increase was, as compared to normal days of the year, we see that last year had a roughly 50% increase over normal while this year we only saw 21%. This could be due to the major Covid outbreak that has occurred recently. Another hint that this may be the cause is the fact that last year Jan 1st saw $15 million in sales while this year only saw $13 million.”

Flower Power

While some of the ingestible categories got big lifts, flower continues to command the market. Leaflink said that flower was the most popular category, making up around 32% of sales through LeafLink in the month prior to the holidays. Cartridges were the second most popular, at around 24% market share. Leaflink said that both were relatively consistent with the previous month, showing that buyers did not significantly change their purchase habits into different categories for the holiday season. The most popular Flower subcategory in the month leading up to the holidays in 2021 was Packaged Flower at 15% of sales, and the second most popular was Bulk Flower at 14.7%.

Jushi (OTC: JUSHF) also reported that Flower remains the number one category leader in demand and interest from patients and consumers. “However, we saw an aggressive uptick trend in disposable and edible sales in 2021,” said the company. 

Discreet products were also big winners. Perhaps consumers wanted to have their cannabis but not be obvious about it when visiting friends and relatives. Lantern said, “What’s interesting about our trending products in Boston for the holiday season, was that our most popular products were discreet and designed to share – predominantly edibles, drinkables, and pre-rolls (typically flower products are our best-sellers). Similarly in Detroit, pre-rolls were our most popular holiday product (party-ready for individual sharing and more discreet).” 

Headset’s data seemed to agree. Their data from Canada showed that the categories that saw the largest sales increase on New Year’s Eve were: Tincture & Sublingual (+30%), Concentrates (+23%), and Beverages (+21%). In the US, the categories with the largest sales response were: Beverages (+18%), Flower (+8.5%), and Concentrates (+7.8%).

Jane Technologies noted that edibles online sales were up over 10% in December 2021 compared to the previous three months and topicals online sales were up over 9% in December 2021 compared to the previous three months. They noted that Airo Black Mamba Specialty Pod online sales were up over 290% in December 2021 compared to the previous three months and Incredibles Cookies & Cream 100mg chocolate online sales were up over 200% in December 2021 compared to the previous three months

Christmas Coupons

With so many shoppers, it was a wonder why anyone would offer a discount, but then people love a bargain. Plus competition is heating up in some markets. Flowhub said that dispensaries were discounting for the holidays, but the discounts themselves weren’t huge.

Flowhub reported the following discount data:

  • Typical Day = 18% of transactions include a discount 
  • Christmas Eve = 39% of transactions included a discount 
  • Christmas Day = 40% of transactions included a discount 
  • New Years Eve = 39% of transactions included a discount 
  • New Years Day = 38% of transactions included a discount
  • Across the Christmas and New Years’ holidays, the average discount amount stayed consistent at $5.00 off their total amount. 

Headset’s discount data found a modest increase in discounting on New Year’s Eve in both Canadian and US cannabis markets. Noting that tThe average discount in Canada on New Year’s Eve was 4.0%, up by about 10% over an average of the previous four Fridays(3.6%). The average discount in the US on New Year’s Eve was 21.1%, up by about 13% over the previous four Fridays (18.6%).

Cali Sober

After all that holiday drinking, many people look at January as a month to sober up and give their bodies a break from all that alcohol. Lantern said, “As we head into the new year, we’re seeing consumers really embrace “Dry January” with our record-best Monday, +29% lift in daily order volume.”

 

 


Debra BorchardtJanuary 5, 2022
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9min20240

Headset is predicting in a new report that the total annual United States cannabis market has the potential to reach $45.8 billion by 2025. Despite its current challenges, California is expected to remain the number one market. Headset is projecting that the state’s market will reach $7.7 billion in just three years. The report becomes a little more interesting when a few surprises pop up in the list.

Florida

Headset believes Florida will rise to become the second-place market with a projected $3.2 billion in sales by 2025. This is pretty surprising considering that Florida is a medical-only state. Headset’s new report notes that in 2021, Florida is estimated to process around $1.3 billion in sales just in the medical market alone. The analytics company thinks that by 2025, there is about a 50% chance that Florida will begin adult-use sales. yet so far attempts to get such legislation passed have failed. The report is also quick to point out that there are a limited number of operators in the state and the barrier to entry is high. In addition to that, the report also states that the current Florida MSO’s are fighting to protect their first-to-market advantage, which could impact growth in sales.

New York

Even though New York is a medical-only state at this time, adult-use sales could begin in 2023. Headset is forecasting the market to become the third-largest in the country with sales of $2.86 billion. That’s a lot of growth in just two years, especially for a brand new program. In addition to that, the illicit market in New York is strong and thriving. The legal market is currently a limited license state, with low adoption. Despite all that, Headset sees great potential in the state since its potential market population is over 15 million, which is similar to Florida. The report also suggests that New York operators could convert quickly.

Arizona 

The Arizona market was not likely to be on the bingo card for the top five cannabis markets, but Headset is forecasting sales to reach $2.79 billion by 2025. The most recent month’s sales have reached $181 million growing from last year’s $85 million. The state is already legal for both medical marijuana and adult-use cannabis.

Illinois

It’s no surprise to see Illinois hit the top five with a projected market of $2.5 billion in sales. This fully legal state has benefited from being the first in the midwest area. It has certainly captured lots of customers from surrounding states that haven’t moved as quickly. The most recent confirmed sales in a month were $144 million.

Here are some of the surprises within the report:

New Jersey

While not as robust as New York, New Jersey is forecast to reach sales of $1.6 billion by 2025. The report read, “With medical operators waiting at the chance to convert their medical operations to adult-use around March of 2022, we are anticipating electrifying growth in the coming years for the Garden State. Regulators are working rapidly to establish a foundation and mobilize this market expected to garner a 21+ population of nearly 7 million in 2025. New Jersey’s limited licenses are almost entirely owned by MSOs, with 2021 being an incredibly active year for acquisitions of prior independent operators in the market. Given the established foundational medical market, we expect to see a quick turnaround for collocated operators once licenses are awarded in the coming months.”

Virginia

Headset says it sees the potential of the Virginia cannabis market hitting $1.3 billion by 2025. “Although current regulations allow for adult-use sales to begin in 2024, we do see a possibility for this timeline to be slightly expedited. Despite having a less robust medical market than New Jersey as a foundation for adult use, the momentum for the advancement of the cannabis market in Virginia is indisputable.”

Ohio

Move over Illinois, Headset says that Ohio has established itself as one of the most exciting emerging cannabis markets in 2021. The report is projecting sales to reach $1.6 billion and rivaling New Jersey.  “By 2025, census data is predicting that Ohio will present a massive addressable market of 8.8 billion potential adult-use consumers over 21+. It is no wonder that we are seeing an ever-increasing call for cannabis legalization in the Buckeye state. Ohio’s current medical market is steadily growing with the potential to reach half a billion in sales by the end of 2021 despite being a limited license market. The medical cannabis in Ohio seems to be bursting at the seams with demand as regulators are seeking to expand both licensing limitations as well as access for patients in the state.”

What about the current hot states? Michigan is forecast to reach $2.4 billion in sales, while Massachusetts is in the middle of the pack at $1.6 billion. The ground zero state for the modern legal adult-use market – Colorado slips to $2.1 billion in sales. Not too shabby and still in the top, but losing its first to market luster.

Methodology

Headset said it employed separate methodologies depending on current market status and data availability.

“For markets that we are currently offering Insights Premium data, we leveraged the per capita spends based on individual market data. We then applied growth rates (CAGRs) based on historical growth in each individual market. Assumed growth rates in per capita spend varied between 2% and 8% per year (which were compounded over the next four years). Additionally, we applied growth (or contraction) based on 21+ population estimates in 2025.”

“For markets that are less mature, we needed to apply a different methodology due to the limited access to current and historical sales trends. In order to forecast these markets, we accounted for three unique factors for each state.” The report posted the following method:

  1. First, we leveraged census data to account for current population totals and demographic breakdowns as well as forecasted totals for 2025 estimates.
  2. Then we calculated an assumed per capita spend for both medical and adult-use markets based on comparable operating markets, CPI data for alcohol sales, and assumed medical percent participation of total 21+ populations in each market.
  3. And last, we compiled estimations for the likelihood of legalization for medical and adult-use markets in every state that does not have current operating cannabis markets. In order to account for the probability that each state will advance cannabis legislation (medical and adult-use), we took into account the current state of cannabis laws, any active campaigns or bills for cannabis advancement as well as any known limitations to enacting medical and adult-use cannabis. In building this model, we are able to attribute a weight to the likelihood that we will see active cannabis sales in the medical and adult-use markets. We also have taken into account the estimated turn-around for the timeline it would take for a market to get up-and-running through comparing similar markets that have completed or are actively working on legalization.

 

 


Julie AitchesonDecember 10, 2021
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In the cannabis industry, branding (which includes packaging, product makeup and thoughtful analysis of the target consumer among other things) has proven to be a major factor in promoting customer loyalty across a wide range of products. Headset’s latest report, “Cannabis Brand Loyalty: A Look At California Vapor Pens”, leads off by invoking the archival image of a plastic baggy full of musty weed traded off in parking lots and clubs. But today’s cannabis product packaging runs the gamut from the utilitarian to the wildly creative. With the horizons of the cannabis market constantly expanding, it is crucial for companies to identify the ideal consumers for their products and how to market towards them for maximum profits. 

The report defines brand loyalty as the tendency of a customer to continue to purchase from one brand loyalty is the tendency of a customer to purchase from the same brand over time. To this end, using California Vapor Pen brands as a model (a product sector that sees a high amount of brand loyalty), Headset’s report investigates three different ways to measure brand loyalty. Using real-time sales reporting, Headset’s data comes directly from partner retailers. This specific report looks at purchase patterns (or how a customer shops over time) and uses the results to paint a picture of customer loyalty. The report is careful to note that both high and low brand loyalty have their merits, citing companies who have the goal of reaching new customers in the market as those with a deliberate low brand loyalty strategy that can still yield solid profits.

Chart provided by Headset

Headset’s first strategy for measuring brand loyalty was looking at repeat purchase rates or the percentage of customers that repurchase a brand in a set time period. In California, 45% of customers re-purchase their products after 6 months. 12.6% of these customers will only re-purchase from a particular brand while 32.6% will purchase other brands in addition to their previously chosen brand. The report highlights this as significant given that people have such varied tastes and there are so many products to choose from. STIIIZY and Plug Play two vape pen brands with markedly high brand loyalty hardware are highlighted here as they both have proprietary hardware that pushes customers to repurchase their brands. However, over 50% of both brands still purchase from other brands even if they have to purchase different batteries, reflecting the aforementioned desire for variety among consumers.

Next, the report measures brand loyalty by looking at switching behaviors, which is when a customer chooses to buy a product from a brand similar to the initial brand chosen. This is a valuable metric as it helps businesses understand their own brands, how they are perceived by their, who their greatest competitors are and why. Headset’s report looks at Legion of Bloom customers and what other brands they are purchasing. The analysis showed that nearly a quarter of Legion of Bloom’s customers purchased a STIIIZY product- valuable information for both brands when considering branding strategies and how to make themselves more competitive. 

Finally, the Headset report sought to measure brand loyalty by exploring wallet share across product categories, which is the percentage of a customer’s cannabis spending that goes towards a specific brand. Nearly 40% of the average Vapor Pen consumer’s wallet share is spent on their top brand, which reinforces the high rate of brand loyalty in this product category and may prompt vape pen brands to consider strategies like proprietary technologies to capitalize on this particular market dynamic.

 


Julie AitchesonDecember 2, 2021
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The numbers are in and it’s official—Green Wednesday 2021 was a big one for the cannabis industry, while Black Friday fizzled in comparison. Green Wednesday saw cannabis sales increase across the U.S. Black Friday did not have the sales growth seen in previous years, though some data (Flowhub) showed larger order values and bigger discounts than Green Wednesday. Data from market analytics and cannabis companies like Headset, LeafLink, Lantern, Glass House Brands, and others show common trends regarding most popular products and year-over-year sales numbers. Using this data, companies extrapolate some possible variables affecting this year’s numbers, including a decreased emphasis on Black Friday door-buster deals targeted towards packing stores with bargain-hungry shoppers, focusing instead on online sales spread out over the holiday season (Springbig).

Headset’s Green Wednesday 2021 data showed a 33% increase in total retail sales compared with the four previous Wednesdays, with a marked trend of customers taking advantage of promotions on offer to receive discounts on holiday shopping, with the average discount up 29 percent. This was in contrast to a slight decrease in sales (-4.6%) on Black Friday relative to the previous four Fridays, despite the fact that average Black Friday discounts increased by 56% from the previous four Fridays.

Flowhub’s data showed an average Green Wednesday discount of $9.57 (up from $8.94 in 2020) and an average Black Friday discount of $11.09. Notable in Flowhub’s findings was the conclusion that while Green Wednesday was a big sales day, Thanksgiving weekend as a whole had lower pre-tax sales than a typical Wednesday through Sunday. Jushi Holdings (OTC: JUSHF) didn’t seem to notice, however, experiencing its best online sales day in the company’s history on Green Wednesday 2021 with an 80% uptick in sales during Thanksgiving week and online ordering up 200% on Green Wednesday. Eaze saw a 135% increase in deliveries compared to a typical Wednesday in 2021, making it their second biggest day this year by both numbers of deliveries and sales after 04/20/21.

Edibles Most Popular For Green Wednesday

Headset’s data on category winners by sales numbers showed edibles leading the pack with 67% growth on Green Wednesday and 11% on Black Friday. Topicals and tinctures took second and third place while beverages saw a whopping 86% growth. Leaflink showed flower holding the top spot for most popular category in the month leading up to Green Wednesday making up 33% of sales with cartridges coming in second up 24.9% from the previous month. Jane Technologies saw its biggest category sales increases in edibles (94%), vapes (84%), and flower (73%) compared to the previous three Wednesdays, with chocolates and disposables leading subcategory sales by increases of 126% and 100% respectively. For Glass House Brands (OTC: GLASF), flower, carts, and edibles were the big winners.

LeafLink’s data measured the growth of sales (10.61%) during the month leading up to Green Wednesday compared to October, with the biggest sales increase (16%) coming during the week of November 14th over the previous week. The run-up to Green Wednesday broke records for cannabis company Lantern, with a 44% rise in average daily sales leading up to Green Wednesday, though there was no significant change to daily Average Order Value.  As the cannabis economy continues to transform to meet a shifting retail environment and shopping behaviors adaptive to these uncertain times, market analysts and retailers will continue to keep an eye on Green Wednesdays and Black Fridays to come as annual bellwethers for the market.

 


Debra BorchardtNovember 29, 2021
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10min13850

A new report from Headset has found that Americans aren’t as into pre-rolls as Canadian consumers. Between August 2020 and August 2021, the market share of pre-rolls in Canada averaged 18.6%, while in the US, the market share of pre-rolls only averaged 9.5%. The only exception it seems is the Massachusetts market. Apparently, they really like pre-rolls in that state. 

Cooper Ashley Senior Data Analyst at Headset said he could think of two reasons that could partly explain why the pre-roll market share is higher in Canada than in the US.
  • Firstly, PreRolls were one of the few product formats that have been available since the beginning of Canada’s cannabis market. A regulation change, dubbed ‘Cannabis 2.0’, allowed previously-prohibited product formats (such as vapor pens, edibles, and concentrates) to be sold in Canadian cannabis retailers at the beginning of 2020 – more than a year after the market originally launched. Most product categories that were introduced in ‘Cannabis 2.0’ still have significantly lower market shares in Canada than in the US. For example, over the previous 90 days, edibles made up about 11% of sales in the US, but only 5% of sales in Canada.
  • Secondly, Canadian Pre-Roll products tend to be larger. By that, I mean that there tends to be more total cannabis in a single Canadian pre-roll product than in a US pre-roll product. For example, over the previous 90 days the highest volume package size of pre-roll in the US was 1g, but 1.5g in Canada. A tendency towards larger package sizes unsurprisingly pushes up the average price of these products as well. Eg. Over the previous 90 days the average price of a pre-roll product was about $11 in the US and about $18 in Canada. That difference in size and price could cause consumers to think of a pre-roll more as a primary purchase, rather than a low-cost add-on item.

When Americans want to buy pre-rolls, they typically choose the connoisseur/infused segment, which makes up 32.4% of sales. Canadians aren’t as picky and this same segment makes up only 0.1% of sales. Pricing is a possible reason for the large difference in Connoisseur/Infused market share between the two countries. In Canada, they are priced 57% higher than the average item price of the other segments, while in the US they are priced only 18% higher than the other segments.

However, pricing might not be the only reason that Americans are choosing the infused joints.  Andrew DeAngelo, Cannabis Industry Consultant, and Strategic Advisor said, “The quality of legal cannabis in the U.S is better in full flower form not in pre-roll form motivating consumers to roll their own rather than getting a subpar pre-roll.”

Scott Grossman, Vice President of Corporate Development at Turning Point Brands (NASDAQ: TPB) (maker of ZigZag rolling papers) agrees with DeAngelo on the perceived quality of cannabis in pre-rolls. He said, “In the U.S., the old pre-rolls were historically viewed as a lower quality flower which may have capped sales—in addition, these items are typically additions to the basket versus the main intent of purchase.” Grossman thinks that Americans prefer to roll their own so that they can control the quality of the product. Despite that, he thinks the perception is slowly changing. 

Innovation

“Companies like Old Pal, Space Coyote, etc. have innovated to create shareable pre-roll packs which make a lot of sense, especially during the pandemic—no one wants to pass around a single joint,” said Grossman.”Nearly 30% of the U.S. pre-roll market is driven by infused pre-rolls—ie. flower either dipped in Kief, but more recently, pre-rolls with hash concentrates within (a better form factor).” 

More companies are producing mini-pre-roll packages so that people can have the social aspect of smoking joints together but without the passing around of a joint. The smaller size also means fewer unsmoked joints that the consumer now has to store without it falling apart or making a mess. For example, Green Thumb Industries (OTC: GTBIF) sells a package of five mini-pre-rolls called Dogwalkers. The idea is that the little joint is small enough to be enjoyed walking one’s dog. 

Cones could be another reason why Americans are rolling their own versus buying pre-rolls. The innovation of selling a cone-shaped empty joint with a small plunger to tamp down dry herb can turn those without joint-rolling skills into a master. Grossman said, “Without question for the consumer. Not only does it make it easier to roll, but new innovation at the cultivation/manufacturing facilities allows the production of pre-rolls at scale (which, to be clear, is still much more labor-intensive than tubes). In addition, a conical joint versus a straight tube/joint actually makes the burn better due to the “Venturi Effect” — because there’s more material on top, it produces a more consistent flavor because you’re burning more in the beginning (and less in the end). This creates less resin and because of increased pressure, it tends to burn smoother. Punchline—a more concentrated hit. Cones also tend to produce less waste (because there is less material near the tip).”

Joint burning performance is also a key issue for these consumers. DeAngelo said that rolling joints at home avoids the joint running problem (burning unevenly) associated with almost all store-bought joints in the US. “A joint that is stuffed by a machine runs like crazy compared to a joint rolled by hand. The way the fibers intertwine works better with a hand roll so the joint burns evenly. Americans are more sensitive to this perhaps. I know I am.” 

More Pre-Roll Differences

Headset also determined in its report that market shares of the Indica and Sativa Single Strain segments in Canada were more than double the size of their market share in the U.S. where Hybrid – Single Strain has more category share than Indica and Sativa combined. “We also find that the Cannagars/Blunts segment owned 4.2% of the Pre-Roll market in the US, while it only held 0.1% within Canada. 

While Americans haven’t been big buyers of pre-rolls to date, that could be changing. It seems companies have learned that tossing the crummy trim into a pre-roll isn’t going to sell. Social media accounts have shown various people buying these pre-rolls and then unwrapping them on camera to expose the insides. That exposure may have turned the tide on poor-quality pre-rolls. As consumers spread the word of an improved product, sales are likely to grow and could make this an improving category.

 


Julie AitchesonSeptember 21, 2021
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5min22050

Cannabis data and analytics specialist Headset just released its latest report comparing US medical and recreational cannabis market development, bearing results that reveal sales patterns and unifying trends across the industry.  The report’s findings are grounded in the context of the predominant pattern of a three-step process in cannabis market development, including prohibition, medical access, and adult-use legalization. 

Though there are exceptions to this evolution where markets leapfrog medical use and go straight from cannabis prohibition to adult-use legalization, flagship states like California, which approved medical use in 1996 but took another twenty years to allow adult-use cannabis, follow a more predictable pattern. The report compares California’s slower rollout to Illinois accelerated process, evident in its shorter six-year span between medical and recreational legalization. 

The Medical To Rec Jump

Due to the time-tested predictability of this market pattern, industry analysts are using it to make sense of the past, paint a clearer picture of the present, and forecast future sales patterns in states such as New York, New Jersey, and Montana, which will all be transitioning to recreational use this year. Headset’s report also looks at cannabis markets in Illinois and Michigan, which made the medical-to-recreational transition fairly recently, and Colorado and Oregon, which jumped on that bandwagon much sooner. Overall, analytics show significant growth when markets first transition to adult-use, as illustrated by Illinois’ 226% gain in the period between the January 2020 launch of their recreational market to July 2021. Michigan’s recreational use program may have had a more sluggish start, but its total adult-use sales still saw a whopping increase of 1077% over the same period.

The impact of adult-use legalization on the medical market is less predictable and more state-specific. While Illinois medical use sales initially held steady once adult-use legalization passed, Michigan saw 75% growth in medical sales between January 2020 and July 2021. Still, the proportion of total cannabis sales to medical patients in Michigan has steadily declined since the introduction of the recreational market, and Illinois saw a steady decline over the first quarter resulting in an all-time low of 20.9% in July 2021. However, Colorado and Oregon, two of the most mature recreational markets in the country, offer some evidence that adult-use legalization is not necessarily a death knell for medical use. Oregon’s medical sales have held steady at 8-12% since the beginning of 2020 with Colorado topping that over the previous twelve months at between 18-20%.

Medical Patients Spend More

Buying behavior differences between recreational and medical use consumers can impact the market as well. Headset data shows that medical consumers tend to purchase more product at one time (a metric they refer to as “basket size”) than recreational consumers, giving Oregon as a prime example, where pre-tax average basket size for medical patients over a 90 day period was a staggering 99% larger than that of recreational use customers. Consumer differences carried over into preferred consumables as well, with medical patients trending higher in concentrate consumption versus the recreational user predilection for edibles and pre-rolls. 

In the end, lower taxes, higher potency THC products and more knowledgeable staff and sales experience give the medical use market enough of an edge that it shows some promise of holding its own, even with the advent of adult-use legalization. Given the astronomical growth spurt of new adult-use markets, however, Headset’s latest findings suggest that medical cannabis will be lucky to maintain its ten to twenty percent of total market share.

 


Debra BorchardtSeptember 8, 2021
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9min24650

Cannabis consumers flocked to dispensaries on the Friday of this past Labor Day weekend resulting in the third-largest day for cannabis sales in 2021. Unfortunately, that was the only good news for cannabis retail. Overall, sales dropped in 2021 versus 2020 for the last weekend of summer. Analytics firms Headset and Flowhub both reported that sales dropped for the regions they cover. While  LeafLink the B2B wholesale e-commerce marketplace company saw an early jump in orders for the holiday, orders seemed to taper off as the weekend got closer.

Headset

According to cannabis data and analytics company Headset, Labor Day weekend (Friday 9/3 through Monday 9/6) actually saw a slight decrease (-3.2%) in average daily sales in comparison to the previous four weekends. On a positive note, though on Friday 9/3/21 alone, we see a different story. Sales on September 3rd, 2021 were up 10.3% over the previous four Fridays and drove this day to be the third-largest day of total US cannabis sales so far this year. All data for the US is from the following markets: CA, CO, MI, NV, OR, PA, WA.

Beverages For The Win

Headset said that for the full holiday weekend, the only categories to see sales growth over the previous four weekends were Beverages (+8.4%) and Edibles (+4.2%). “When we look at only Friday, September 3rd instead, all categories saw positive growth with Edibles (+15.1%), Capsules (+13.3%), and Vapor Pens (+11.2%). The category with the lowest sales lift was Concentrate with +2.8% growth over the previous four Fridays.”

Coupon Clippers

Dispensaries must’ve had an inkling that sales might be down because there was a slight increase in discounting over the entire holiday weekend. Headset said that the average discount over Labor Day Weekend 2021 was 13.7%, up from 12.3% over the previous four weekends – a relative increase of 11.8%. While Friday, September 3rd was the highest sales day of the weekend, Labor Day itself (Monday 9/6) had the highest average discounts of 15.1%, up 27% over the previous four Mondays. 

LeafLink 

On the wholesale side of the business, it seems dispensaries were planning ahead for a busy holiday. LeafLink said that sales increased 4.33% during the month leading up to the 2021 Labor Day holiday versus a 2.39% increase across the same period in 2020. Leaflink also said that the most significant GMV (gross merchandise value) percentage increase came during the week of 8/15, increasing 4.5% over the previous. Sales then leveled off for the rest of the weeks leading up to Labor Day.

Leaflink outlined the category demand as follows for the holiday:

  • Flower remained the most popular category in the month leading up to Labor Day, driving 36.33% of GMV compared to 35% of GMV in the month prior to Labor Day 2020 and 35.37% in the previous month. 
  • The second most popular product category leading up to Labor Day 2021 was Cartridges, which made up 22.29% of GMV (about a 1% increase over the previous month). This is a slight drop over 2020 when Cartridges made up 24% of GMV in the month before Labor Day. 
  • Flower saw significant growth during the week of 8/15, increasing 23% in GMV compared to the week before then grew another 9.9% in the following week. This could signify an increase in dispensaries stocking up on Flower in advance of Labor Day 2021. 
  • Packaged Flower was the most popular subcategory, making up 17.47% of total GMV in the month before Labor Day, with Bulk Flower coming in second at 16.29%

The most popular products in the month leading up to Labor Day in 2021 were: Slurricane Packaged Flower – MUV (FL) 

Gelato Cake Packaged Flower – District Cannabis (MD) 

Wedding Cake Packaged Flower – Pacific Stone (CA) 

Blueberry Indica Gummies – MUV (FL) 

Moon Rocks Concentrates – UBaked (MI) 

The most popular Cartridges in the month leading up to Labor Day 2021 were: Biscotti – Platinum Vape (MI) 

Sour Jack – MUV (FL) 

Double Bear Honey Cart – Terrapin (PA) 

Pink Lemonade – MUV (FL) 

Pie Driver – Platinum Vape (MI) 

Flowhub 

Flowhub provides point-of-sale, inventory, and other dispensary analytics. That company found that on average, Labor Day normally outperforms the typical Monday by 17-27%. Unfortunately, Flowhub’s data agreed with Headset as this year’s Labor Day 2021 was right on par with (actually slightly less than) a typical Monday. Flowhub said that there didn’t appear to be any holiday bumps in sales or transactions for Labor Day Monday and sales dropped by 9% versus the 2020 holiday.

Maybe the pandemic lockdowns of 2020 caused consumers to buy more last year? Labor Day’s Monday 2020 sales increased around 10% versus 2019. Just one year later as more people were able to get out and return to a less restrictive lifestyle, Labor Day weekend sales dropped 35% compared to 2020. On average, Labor Day weekend outperforms the typical (median) weekend by 15-21%. Flowhub said that Labor Day weekend 2021 sales were 27% less than sales on a typical summer weekend.


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