The CBD industry is one of the business segments that has witnessed a rise in 2020 and is projected to grow even further to astronomical heights. Over the next 5 years, the market for cannabidiol (CBD) oil is expected to grow from $967.2 million in 2020 to $5.3 billion by 2025 (Medgadget.com). Demand for CBD has grown tremendously over the years but more since the beginning of the pandemic.
This crisis has caused a lot of people to go back to the drawing board or find ways to improve life as a whole. Heightened demand has presented unprecedented opportunities for newcomers like Alec Martin and his wife Stephanie who own Tranquil store, a CBD line offering a range of products ranging from oils to even gummies and sweets.
However, while being responsible for increased demand, COVID has also resulted in the disruption of the sales process and threatened to throw many new stores off course. Alec and Stephanie’s business, Tranquil Store has not been immune to the effects of the virus on commerce. Running a relatively new CBD brand in the middle of a global crisis gave them fresh insight on running a business that can only be uncovered during one of the most devastating periods mankind has faced in decades. This article outlines some of their lessons from this period to help other CBD entrepreneurs navigate challenging business situations.
- Introducing Incentives
Due to domestic and international restrictions on commerce and the economy, many businesses are facing unprecedented logistics challenges. Online brands particularly are left helpless and are completely at the mercy of courier and delivery companies’ whims.
“We have experienced delayed shipping times due to the pandemic. We have no control over the delivery of our products,” Alec and Stephanie admit. Beyond the challenges imposed by the pandemic, businesses have to seek innovative ways to continue to provide premium customer service and keep the customers happy. It can be as simple as informing customers about periods when they will experience shipping delays, as Tranquil Store does.
“Customers are made aware of the delay in shipping times that can occur out of our control, the duo behind Tranquil Store state. “As a courtesy, we have provided customers with discounts and free merchandise from time to time.”
This was quite a wise move, as customer loyalty was retained. And although it came at the price of discounts, customers will be happy that they were put first.
- Prioritizing Customer Safety
COVID-19 is an extremely contagious virus. Since the early days of the pandemic, individuals have been advised to stay at home and avoid unnecessary & unsanitary contact. As a CBD e-commerce brand, Tranquil store has had to implement different measures to fulfill higher demands for products and at the same time make sure customers are safe.
“Demand for CBD has grown tremendously over the years but more since the pandemic,” Alec comments on the heightened demand for their products over the last few months. CBD offers numerous benefits, such as pain and anxiety relief. Many individuals have had to deal with devastating circumstances during this period. And most of them have used CBD to help lessen the stress that this brings.”
To ensure that their customers are safe, Alec and Stephanie have tightened packaging and delivery precautions of Tranquil Store products to serve customers better at this point of need.
“Our mission at Tranquil is to deliver premium quality service. We put all of our customers first no matter the circumstance,” the couple states their commitment. “To protect our customers and staff, anyone packaging an order must have the necessary PPE (Gloves, Mask, Sanitizer, Gown) to negate the spread of germs. Our staff must wash their hands before and after each packaging session. We also organize weekly COVID tests for all members of our staff.”
COVID-19 patients can sometimes be asymptomatic; therefore, it is necessary to adopt this proactive approach towards early detection to avoid compromising customers’ safety.
- Taking Advantage of Online Channels
Being an e-commerce brand has served Tranquil Store very well in these times. “The pandemic has caused a lot of consumers to make more purchases online. A lot of tools exist to help an online business flourish,” Alec explains.
There are several tools and channels that are available to online businesses. When applied correctly, these channels can help businesses reach customers in innovative and convenient ways. “Ads have been a very critical tool to use for awareness purposes and exposure,” Alec speaks on one such channel. Using tools like ads, CBD stores can connect directly with target customers online and generate traffic and leads, leading to higher sales.
Undoubtedly, there will be unexpected seasons in every business. As an entrepreneur, you must trust your instincts to know the right thing to do and seek inspiration from contemporaries like Alec and Stephanie Martin, who have overcome similar challenges.