SEO for the Cannabis Industry | A Complete Guide

SEO for the cannabis industry can help any kind of cannabis-related business to thrive on the Internet. The following guide contains the information you need to know to get your online cannabis marketing efforts rolling.

What is cannabis SEO?

Cannabis SEO is a series of techniques and practices designed to improve the marketing of cannabis products on the Internet. By implementing SEO, entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry can market their products to a wide audience while staying compliant with the law.

Why do you have to do SEO?

How does cannabis SEO work?

Cannabis SEO works by optimizing the website and content of a company to maximize user interactions. The goal of cannabis SEO is to create a passive form of advertising that revolves around generating organic traffic. This helps brands rank higher on search engines, attract more visitors, and close more sales.

Why is SEO important for cannabis companies?

While SEO is important for companies in every industry, it is especially beneficial to cannabis business brands. SEO services allow cannabis companies to market their products and services directly to their user base without being hindered by outdated regulations or antagonizing third parties.

According to research, 95% of web traffic goes to websites on the first page of Google search results. Moreover, the first domain listed on Google receives around one third of all search traffic (source). SEO techniques like link building and content marketing have a direct impact on search engine rankings.

How can customers find cannabis companies online?

The most effective way to market a marijuana business is to allow customers to discover it organically. An SEO strategy allows cannabis companies to market their products online at all times, giving potential customers perpetual access to information and the means of acquiring your cannabis products.

The importance of content marketing for the cannabis industry

Cannabis content marketing can substantially boost digital marketing efforts by producing new informative and creative content. Search engine algorithms prioritize websites that provide value to visitors, and content marketing is an efficient source of original content.

7 tips for an awesome and SEO-friendly blog post

SEO strategies for marijuana companies

Here are SEO strategies for marijuana companies to boost your visibility online:

  1. Build your own cannabis website
  2. Optimize your website for mobile devices
  3. Register your cannabis brand with Google my Business
  4. Implement keywords
  5. Place an emphasis on local SEO

1. Build your own cannabis website

In today’s day and age, having a website is essential. Your website is the main hub for your cannabis SEO strategy and content. By offering your customers the chance to perform online purchases, you can turn your website into your storefront as well.

Thanks to website creation tools like Squarespace or Webflow, people who have little to no experience in computer science can create functional websites. However, being able to create a website with a professional look doesn’t guarantee a steady flow of online traffic. 

When creating your website, you should consider SEO services in your budget. Cannabis SEO experts can drastically improve the popularity of a cannabis website as well as fix technical issues. The main advantage of having our own website is the capacity to deploy SEO efforts and ensure a steady flow or organic traffic to your website.

How much does a website cost?

2. Optimize your website for mobile devices

Mobile-first design guarantees your website is appealing and functional on all types of screens, minimizing the chance of a visitor leaving due to difficulties with site navigation. Mobile-first, responsive web design has become the standard for all websites, and must thereby be an integral part of your website building efforts.

According to research by Statista, mobile devices are the most common method of browsing the Internet on a worldwide scale (source). By focusing on the needs of the majority of customers, this design approach enables a web page’s content and design to be easy to access and navigate. 

Every mobile-first website should contain the following features:

  • A focus on user engagement: The users of a mobile-first website should be able to navigate and complete tasks like purchases quickly and efficiently. Web designers must consider all possible interactions between a user and the website to identify all potential issues and address them accordingly.

  • Concise and direct content: There is very little space for clutter on a phone screen. A clear visual hierarchy of content should be applied as a primary aspect of web design. Besides allowing for intuitive navigation, this method helps you put a spotlight on the information you want your visitors to pay attention to.

  • A simple but effective design: A website shouldn’t waste visitors’ time with superfluous or irrelevant content. The visual elements of a good mobile-first website must keep a sober but sleek design, using few elements to convey big ideas. Layout, typography, white space, and other design aspects play a critical role in user experience.

  • Attractive CTAs: Calls to action (CTA) incentivize website visitors to take an active role in purchasing a company’s products or services. Failure to implement CTAs will make a considerable number of potential leads miss out on products, special offers, user perks, and more.

  • Decent loading speeds: Internet users expect to have a seamless experience on every website they visit. Poor website optimization can make people hesitant to buy from a business. As a rule of thumb, a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load will feel slow to customers and have a higher bounce rate.

3. Register your cannabis brand with Google my Business

The registration process is quick, easy, and free. Registering with Google is an effective first step toward a successful marijuana SEO strategy. Registering brings many benefits to businesses, including those that rely on a physical location to operate. 

For instance, cannabis dispensaries can use Google my Business to display their store on Google maps. Information such as the brand’s logo, address, and opening hours can be included for all customers to see. Moreover, Google analytics can be used to acquire demographic insights about business leads.

When a cannabis company registers with Google, it is given the choice to brand itself as a marijuana business by using the category “cannabis store”. In addition, businesses can specify if they offer delivery services. Registered businesses are also given a feature by Google whenever someone places their brand’s name into search queries.

4. Implement keywords

Keywords are essential to running a cannabis store or dispensary SEO operations. Selecting the right target keywords is a cornerstone of a good content plan, as they will inform your customers of what your business is about.

A considerable portion of society is still unsympathetic towards cannabis-related content, leading search engines like Google to disallow paid advertisements for marijuana or marijuana-related products. By using keywords, cannabis businesses can circumvent this hurdle and showcase their brand directly to interested customers.

Using common terms such as “dispensary” or “edibles” as your keywords is not enough, as these are broad terms that can get easily overlooked by search engine algorithms. Keyword research tools and techniques are often used by cannabis SEO experts to certify the functionality of target keywords.

The following factors influence the keyword research process:

  • Search volume: This value represents how popular a search term is with people on a monthly average. To boost organic traffic, It is important to choose search terms with a certain degree of popularity.

  • Keyword difficulty: A keyword may have a very good search volume, but that still doesn’t mean it will produce the best results. Some popular keywords face considerable competition, making it very hard for a website to place as #1 on search results. To achieve the best results, businesses have to choose keywords relative to their existing popularity.

  • Search intent: A keyword’s search intent is the quality of the relationship between a keyword and the brand it is meant to promote. Using a keyword just because it has a low difficulty can be counterintuitive, as your website will rank higher on the wrong searches. 

5. Place an emphasis on local SEO

When you type the word “marijuana” into Google search, the location where you perform that search influences the results. Some search results, such as the Wikipedia article for Cannabis, will most likely appear very high on the ranking regardless of where the search was performed. Still, a considerable number of search results are sensitive to geographic location.

The number of Google searches for the term “near me” is consistently on the rise (source). This fact shows people’s prevalence to use Google to look for the products and services they want, including marijuana. Local SEO services can turn your cannabis store into the #1 search result in your area, giving you access to tons of local potential customers who haven’t heard about your business yet.

A keyword and content strategy based around optimizing local search results can be used to effectively build customer-brand relationships. By partnering with a marijuana SEO agency, cannabis businesses can reap the full benefits of local SEO and optimize their growth in the market.

How to increase your sales with local SEO

Cannabis SEO services

Improve the efficiency of your digital marketing operations with ProStar SEO. By helping you increase the traffic to your website, ProStar SEO expands your brand’s visibility across the Internet. Our team specializes in boosting the ranking of companies on search engines by reassessing their website’s communication strategies. 

Likewise, the creation of novel content allows your website to entice visitors and influence search engine rankings. Implementing local SEO services allows any cannabis dispensary or similar business to become the #1 source of cannabis products and paraphernalia in its community.

Contact us to begin the digital transformation of your business or  request a free technical audit to better understand the challenges your website faces, and how to optimize the growth of your business. 

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