Cannabis industry reports

Post 4/20 update: What consumers did on 4/20 2019

January 17, 2020

Executive Summary

This report is a focused snapshot of 4/20/2019 that examines the overarching sales numbers, as well as more granular trends within those. It will be interesting to anyone who wants to understand more about what people bought on the biggest day in cannabis this year, but especially to retailers and industry insiders whose business it is to capitalize on the celebration,


One might think, after four years of legal cannabis, the magic of 4/20 would have worn off, at least in terms of wild sales spikes. Not so. Consumers still flocked to stores on the big day this year, seeking the deals that have become synonymous with what was once an obscure stoner culture celebration. Retailers routinely see spikes of 100% or more, and have since the onset of legalization. This year was no exception.

But as a day that was once simply about widespread cannabis consumption has evolved into a shopping bonanza not unlike Black Friday, certain sales trends have emerged. For instance, Beverages enjoy the most pronounced spike in sales, joined by other single-use categories like Pre-Rolls.

There’s also the hype leading up to 4/20, which drives sales higher than on similar days of the week in other months. And, of course, the crash afterwards, which sees sales slump for 4/21 and the immediately following days. Getting more granular than that, we looked at which particular hours saw the most sales, which is important for anyone trying to plan festivities, or staff their shop, around the day. Lastly, we broke down the categories - crucial information for curating 4/20 displays or promotions. 

Year after year, 4/20 is quite the day for cannabis. While it began as a simple “stoner holiday,” for cannabis lovers to get together and consume, it has become a different beast entirely under legalization.


Data for this report comes from real-time sales reporting by participating cannabis retailers via their point-of-sale systems, which are linked up with Headset’s data analytics platform. This report is based on data collected from retailers on 4/20/2019 and the four previous Saturdays. We used the same methodology for Friday 4/19 and Sunday 4/21. Demographic data is from voluntary participants in store loyalty programs. Those data are cross referenced with our catalog of over 330,000 products and $4.5 billion of transactions to provide detailed information on market trends.

Headset’s data is very reliable, as it comes digitally direct from our partner retailers. However, the potential does exist for misreporting in the instance of duplicates, incorrectly classified products, inaccurate entry of products into point-of-sale systems, or even simple human error at the point of purchase. Thus, there is a slight margin of error to consider.

More than double

This year saw a sales boost that slightly exceeded our predictions, with sales up 128% when compared to the four previous Saturdays. We’d predicted between 100% and 120%. We also predicted a significant increase in sales on the day before 4/20 because 4/19 was on a Friday this year. Fridays are already the most popular days for pot, of course, but this one saw a sizable boost of 27% over the previous four.

However, after the sales boost there is the inevitable hangover. Sales dropped 25% compared to a typical spring Sunday. Another interesting aspect of this graph is the average discounts offered on each day. Obviously 4/20 enjoys the biggest discounts, but the lower discount levels did not have much effect on the pre and post-4/20 trends.

Download full report

Please fill out this simple form to get access to the full report. Headset industry reports provide vital market insights to help you make truly informed decisions. Get perspective into the following areas:

Retailer Specifics
Brand Specifics
Category Data
Basket Trends and Analysis
Top Selling Products
Purchasing Patterns
Buying Cycles
Demographic Trends
Segment Analysis
Fastest Growing Segments
New Brands and Products
Sales Analysis
Sales by Weight
Product Profitability
First Name
Last Name
Work Email
Phone Number
Company Name
Job Title
* All flields required

Thank you!

Lorem ipsum success message text.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.