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WeedmapsNews Culture & Industry

How Weedmaps Can Help Shops and Brands Combat Counterfeits

September 3, 2019   2:53 pm PDT |
Updated 3 weeks ago

More often than not, operating in the modern weed market means that vape pens are a staple of your business. The vape tech boom of the legal cannabis market has led to a surge in popularity for handy, pocket-sized, on-the-go devices which, unfortunately, have also drawn a surge in imitators that bear the likeness of authentic brands. 

Even major brands such as Connected Cannabis Co., Heavy Hitters, and Kingpen have had to deal with counterfeit versions of their vape pens hitting the market. In 2019 people in several Midwestern states and California have been hospitalized with severe respiratory distress, and the many of them seem to be connected to phony vape pens purchased from an illicit seller. 

But as counterfeit products impact the market, consumers have more questions than ever about how to ensure that the products they consume are authentic and safe to use. Brands and retailers using the Weedmaps Verified program have protected consumers from over 15,000 unverified products. 

Here's how Weedmaps Verified can help your brand or business foster and retain customer loyalty by letting them know they can trust the products you offer. 

How Retailers Use Product Verification

Counterfeit cannabis products are a growing problem in the industry. We all want the public to trust us with their time, money, and safety, and no brand or cannabis retailer wants their name associated with counterfeit goods. The Weedmaps verification platform is a way to kill two birds with one stone — taking active measures against the sale of counterfeit products while swinging customer confidence in your favor and driving more sales. Brand-loyal customers can easily toggle their view on Weedmaps to filter store locator maps by brand and only see products that bear the Weedmaps Verified label. 

Based on Weedmaps Orders data pulled in July and August of 2019, consumers were 55% more likely to purchase Verified products. Verified products on your Weedmaps menu will get official photos and product descriptions that brands upload. Not only does that save you from having to create extra content, will help you expand your reach and prove your retail authenticity to an enormous audience of scrupulous cannabis consumers who care about buying safer, more ethically sold products.

Weedmaps Verified has protected users from thousands of cannabis products that were either counterfeit or offered by unauthorized sellers. (Photo by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps)

To improve your menu with the Weedmaps Verified seal, upload menu items to your Weedmaps listing from the quality brands in your shop and request to be verified partners with them. Once a brand accepts your request, your product listing gets the Weedmaps Verified seal, official info curated by the brand, and verified placement on the store and product locator maps. 

Verified products improve the quality of your menu because they're the only ones that will show reviews, which in turn helps drive better purchasing decisions on the part of the end user. 

How Brands Use Product Verification

On Weedmaps, brands can play an integral role in preventing the sale of counterfeit cannabis while protecting and even bolstering their own reputation. When customers view your brand page, they will only see retailers that carry your real products. 

You also have the power to actively reject retailers you haven't authorized to carry your product, helping your customers get to the real deal when they search for which of your products are available in their area. 

Product verification on Weedmaps also helps you take control of your brand image — allowing you to upload high-quality photos and product info, which will help educate your brand-loyal customers and provide a consistent visual experience. As a brand, it's also up to you to approve or reject all verification requests from retailers, while simultaneously providing all of your verified retailers with product info and visible reviews. 

If a product is counterfeit, it won't get the Verified icon. If unauthorized retailers are claiming to sell your product, their listing won't have your seal of approval, either. It's a simple yet highly effective tool for raising brand awareness, encouraging brand loyalty, and safeguarding your customers from counterfeit merchandise through a rewarding, consistent shopping experience.

Want to know more? Call (844) 933-3627 or talk to your Weedmaps account manager to strike a meaningful blow against counterfeit products. Brands can read about product verification here. Retailers can read about product verification here

Feature image: The growth of the cannabis industry has attracted its share of counterfeiters. Some products have even been known to sicken consumers. Retailers, don't let this happen to you. Weedmaps can help. (Bang Le/Weedmaps Photo Library)

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