Customer reviews and feedback are at the center of how a typical consumer shops for just about anything these days, consider the following questions:
- What is the last product you bought online without reading a review first?
- What is the last restaurant you went to without reading a review?
- What is the last movie or show you watched without reading a review?
Customer reviews are imperative to the modern consumer experience. For the first time in the history of free markets, consumers are able to make informed decisions using aggregated feedback from complete strangers. They help us to feel more confident in the purchases that we make. Free market capitalism generally dictates that the best product will win. Product Reviews help the best product to win and people to have great experiences.
Missouri Dispensaries are selling products but, more importantly, they are selling an experience: the experience of finding a product that will relieve pain, evoke joy or help with sleep. If the experience is seamless and the product works as intended, you have the opportunity to capture a lifetime customer resulting in long-term revenue. This is especially true if the experience will have an impact on your customer's well-being, as well as their mental, physical, and emotional health. Cannabis products will change the way someone feels for up to 4 hours. It is important, especially for less-experienced or new-ish to cannabis customers, to find a product that makes them feel good for 4 hours. You have the opportunity to take a customer from “hesitant to try” to “cannabis advocate”.
Since 2017, Patient Experience (or PX) is how we have described the experience that your beloved customers have while visiting one of your locations. While many markets now offer adult-use, we still consider all Cannabis Consumers to be Patients. Patients of the healing plant. Retailers in Missouri spend thousands of dollars annually training retail employees to provide a best-in-class Patient experience in-store, helping people who are new to cannabis to find the right products. Due to the ongoing stigma, a lot of Missouri newbies to the plant may be apprehensive about going in-store. How do you aid those potential customers in finding the right product?
Imagine my 62-year-old mother pulling up your online menu during a visit to St. Louis. She sees products like Jokers, Hot Donna, Cheetah Piss & Motor Breath. This is likely both an intimidating and confusing experience and she may just give up the dream of finding a product to help her with sleep. This is where you lose a potential lifetime customer. How do you solve this problem and capture this potential customer (and revenue)? Product Reviews.
Below is a quick glance at the filters Jane provides to help customers identify the right product:
Note: While other software companies allow dispensaries to tag products in a similar fashion, our activities & filters are based on Verified Consumer Reviews (from your friends & neighbors)
With Jane, our Product Reviews are intended to guide customers through the purchasing process. To improve the product discovery process and increase consumer confidence. Stoners make up a small percentage of the general pool of potential customers; if you are able to convert prospective customers who have limited knowledge (but are hesitant to go in-store for a consultation) you are likely building a more robust and loyal customer base. Instead of the race to the price bottom to convert Stoners (who are deal shopping), you can create a more loyal customer base with new-to-cannabis or novice consumers. They are more likely to be loyal and recommend your dispensary to their network.
Product Reviews are a challenge to build into a software product. Very few e-commerce companies are able to replicate this experience because they do not have a centralized product catalog. Without a standard Product Detail Page and proper data hygiene, it is impossible to build a base of product reviews that is consistent across each unique product/ SKU. Product Reviews are crucial to the buying experience but are uncommon in this industry because of this challenge.
When a product review is generated through a Jane menu, we also ask that verified buyers share not only their qualitative experience but also what feelings they experienced (ex. relaxed, energetic, hungry) as well as any activities that the product aided them in (sleeping, intimacy, etc.). Most e-commerce tools allow for a similar filtering capability however that is a manual process and is not driven by the actual customer experience. While helpful, these tags are not based on any verified experience which can lead to the consumer finding the wrong product.
Below are some examples from some well-known Missouri brands:
Product Reviews are both a nice to have and a need to have. They are an essential part of the customer experience. They improve the product discovery process and increase the likelihood of conversion. They also help ensure that the customer finds a product that will work for them which increases the chances of them returning to your store and sharing their experience with their network. Product Reviews and the subsequent conversion % is a key part of the Revenue Health Formula exhibited below:
Written By: Tim Zielinski, Director of Business Development at Jane Technologies Inc.
About Jane Technologies: Jane Technologies, Inc. has developed the cannabis industry’s first real-time marketplace, where consumers can discover and order cannabis online. We believe in the cannabis industry’s ability to bring well-being, health, and love into this world, and it is our mission to bring confidence to the cannabis shopping experience. If you want to leverage product reviews to optimize the customer experience and drive higher conversion rates, please reach out to TimZ@iheartjane.com for a free consultation with our Retail Team. You can also fill out the form here.