April 1, 2020

In pursuit of the dispensary inventory sweet spot

How dispensary owners can manage their inventory so it’s just right.
Written by
Blake Fery
Published on
April 1, 2020
Vapor pen icon
Interested in the vapor pen market? Read our comprehensive 2023 report. Get the low-down on which brands and form factors are gaining the most market share as well as demographics about the consumers doing the most purchasing.

Competition continues to heat up for dispensaries as more licenses get awarded and states keep expanding their markets. Like other retailers in more traditional industries, finding the right dispensary inventory levels, the sweet spot, is critical for these over-taxed, investment-heavy businesses. Too little of the right item lead to stockouts which in turn could cost a dispensary, not only revenue but also a good valuable customer. Too much of one product and the dispensary is stuck with cannabis that goes stale, forcing promotions which dig into profitability.

Like Goldilocks, dispensary owners want to get their inventory “just right.”

Finding the sweet spot

Luckily, tools exist for dispensary owners and store managers to hit that sweet spot. The key is learning from this data and proactively act on it. Dispensary owners can learn which products sell best at various locations and stock accordingly. They can even learn how much product to stock during an average week versus a big holiday. There is no point in having too much capital tied up in inventory if it isn’t necessary.

Cannabis average discount for holidays
Cannabis average discount for holidays

Good data = Successful employees

More dispensary inventory data is never a bad thing. Besides managing stock to sales ratios, store owners can use inventory systems to uncover strengths and weaknesses with their key employees – the budtenders. If a budtender is selling too much of one cannabis product or category and not enough of another, it may be a matter of more product education or sales skills. Managers can use sales and inventory data to help their budtenders become more successful and reach their quotas. A happier employee can lead to better employee retention for this position, as well.

The Goldilocks vendor

With so many cannabis products on the market, dispensary owners and store managers have lots of options and can be picky with the vendors and items they choose. Having a great vendor partner can help keeping inventory levels “just right.” If the manager is swamped and unable to do inventory data analysis, a good vendor that utilizes equally good data tools can help the store understand proper dispensary inventory levels for their cannabis products. Choosing a supplier that uses little or no inventory software could hurt your business. Even if you like the product, it might not be worth it.

Dispensary owners and store managers can share reordering responsibilities with a supplier that uses automatic restocking software. This is especially helpful if the owner has more than one location. Different neighborhoods will experience different preferences among customers or patients.

Plus, a good partner will devote time to product education for budtenders. A reliable vendor supports their cannabis products with in-store training. Many best-in-class vendors now host in-store pop up shops to educate customers, which adds value to the store.

Happy customers stay

When the inventory is just right customers stay, remain loyal. Lucky for the dispensary owner, the tools are there to make sure the inventory isn’t too light or too heavy. This sweet spot can lead to a smoother operation, a happier customer and a happier owner.

Want information on how Headset can help your dispensary inventory hit the sweet spot? Contact us.

Subscribe To Headset
Stay up-to-date on everything happening in the cannabis economy:
Read about our privacy policy.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Join over +3,500 cannabis companies

Stay ahead of your competition & achieve long-term success in the cannabis industry.