Cannabis has been growing increasingly popular in states that have legalized it. Nevada is no different. Although sales dipped in 2022, the amount of cannabis sold since recreational legalization in 2017 has nearly doubled.
The increased demand for cannabis products means that now might be a good time to get into the industry. Not sure how to go about it? We’ve got your quick guide on how to start a weed business in Nevada.
1. Create a Business Plan
A solid business plan is an essential starting point for entrepreneurs in all industries, including cannabis. The document serves as your roadmap, outlining your goals and guiding the decisions you make to achieve them.
As you draft your business plan, be sure to include details like:
- The purpose of your weed business
- Information about your target market
- The products/services you plan to offer
- Marketing plans
- How you’ll manage your finances
If you haven’t already, you’ll also want to start brainstorming THC business names for your company. While the Secretary of State doesn’t offer a business name availability service, you can run your prospective names through a business search to see if they’re already in use.
2. Apply for a Cannabis License
To operate a weed business legally in Nevada, you must obtain a cannabis license from the Cannabis Compliance Board (CCB) and pay the associated application fees, which vary depending on your specific business type. You’ll need to pay to renew your license annually too. For instance, the initial cost for a recreational dispensary license is $20,000, and the renewal cost is $6,600 per year.
You’ll also need an Agent Card to work in the cannabis industry in Nevada, which you can get from the CCB. If you plan to work in more than one category (for instance, you want to cultivate plants and operate a dispensary), you’ll need a card for each role. Each card requires a $150 application fee.
3. Find a Retail Location
Location is key. When searching for places to set up shop, keep factors like population, traffic, tourism, parking, and accessibility in mind, as well as the actual size and layout of the building itself. Note that there are state, local, and municipal limits that dictate where cannabis businesses can operate.
4. Secure Financing
Unless you’re self-funded, you’ll need money to get your weed business up and running. However, traditional banks and credit unions don’t give loans to businesses in the cannabis industry. You still have options, though, such as cannabis-specific lenders, crowdfunding, and angel investors.
5. Source Products
Nevada allows for vertical integration, enabling you to grow, manufacture, and sell your own products so long as you have the necessary licenses and Agent Cards. Even if you choose to go this route, you may still want to carry items from other suppliers. Make sure you have a good mix of high-quality products from reputable brands that your customers will want to buy.
6. Build a Winning Team
The people you hire can make or break your business. Finding great employees may take time, but it will be well worth the effort. And once you have them, you’ll want to ensure you retain them. Treat employees well, pay them fairly, and consider offering an irresistible benefits package.
7. Develop a Marketing Plan
All of the work you put into starting your weed business won’t amount to much if you don’t have customers. Investing in marketing is a must. Digital marketing strategies like website optimization, paid advertising, and content marketing, along with traditional solutions like print ads and billboards, can help you reach your target audience, attract customers, and grow your brand.
Set Your Weed Business up for Success
Starting and running a weed business is an exciting adventure. It’s also a lot of hard work and dedication. Highopes is here to help. As an expert cannabis branding agency, we can help you develop your brand and market it successfully with solutions custom-tailored to your unique needs and goals. Ready to get started? Check out our services or contact us today!