Cannabis Dispensary

Cannabis Dispensaries – What Makes a Good One?

November 13, 2019 0 Comment

Cannabis Dispensaries – What makes a good one? For decades the idea of a brick and mortar storefront selling cannabis to the general public was an outlandish fantasy of “delinquent stoners”. However with the slow acceptance and legalization of recreational cannabis usage comes the need for a functional, safe way to obtain the product. Dispensaries are run by the local government of the state they reside, and are often a target of federal prosecution due to cannabis still being illegal on the federal level.

However, the dispensaries that maintain their tax compliance, as well as other regulations, are often able to grow immensely in a short amount of time. The first dispensary in the US was in San Francisco in 1992; today, seven states regulate recreational sellers. Though we also have to examine medical dispensaries, which are available to medical marijuana card holders in states where cannabis has not been legalized.

Related article: How much does it cost to open a cannabis dispensary

What Makes a Good Cannabis Dispensary?

Here are some characteristics to be aware of when looking for your home base dispensary…

  1. Price
  2. Menu Selection
  3. Staff
  4. Environment / Atmosphere
  5. Community Promotion
  6. Lab Testing
  7. Reputation

Related Article: 12 Key Features of a Cannabis Dispensary POS Software

Characteristics of a Good Cannabis Dispensary

Let’s discuss characteristics of a good cannabis dispensary..


Pricing in regards to cannabis can sometimes require some research. Prices and promotions can vary from state to state due to varying tax requirements for each local government as well as federal government.

A good dispensary will give customers a reason to return in regard to price. Many reputable dispensaries have loyalty programs as well as a variety of advertisements and promotions. 

Menu Selections 

It is critical for a dispensary to have a wide variety of products available for the consumers. Flower, concentrates, edibles, and topicals are just a few of the products a dispensary should have many options and varieties of at a range of price points.

Many credible dispensaries also sell cannabis accessories. A popular dispensary will take into account feedback from their community and rotate in and out of their dispensaries what their customers want. 

Related article: 10 Ways to simplify dispensary operations with cannabis pos software


The demeanor, hospitality, and knowledge base of your budtender plays a major role in the consumer buying experience for cannabis. Buying marijuana isn’t like buying your regular 6-pack, and the customer is often not a cannabis expert.

A good dispensary will have staff with a wide knowledge of the different types of cannabis products sold, how the customer can consume them, and be able to answer any questions customers might have. They should be able to recommend an array of products and specific dosages based on your specific needs. 


This one is a bit of a no-brainer – but your dispensary should have a generally nice ambiance to it. Not everyone that buys cannabis feels completely comfortable shopping quite yet. So a good dispensary will make you feel comfortable and at ease during your buying experience. Some things to consider are lighting, layout, music, staff presence/attire, smell, and temperature. 

Related: Signs of using wrong cannabis dispensary pos software

Community promotion 

Community backlash can often be an issue for dispensaries. Though weed may be legal (medically or recreationally), not everyone in the community is always excited about the opening of a new dispensary in the area. 

A good dispensary will have community programs in an attempt to bridge the gap and end the stigma surrounding cannabis in the area as well as general promotion. Some examples may be participating in local events like fairs and gatherings, adopting highways for cleanup, or facilitating donations and fundraisers.

They can also offer in house information seminars, cooking classes, or even lectures from activists or prominent members of the surrounding cannabis community.

Related article: State Medical Cannabis Dispensary Laws | State Recreational Marijuana Laws

Lab testing 

Depending on the state, not all dispensaries are required to test their products for the validity of the cannabis. However a good dispensary will thoroughly test or buy thoroughly tested products.

Testing for extracts of pathogens, checking to see if their edibles are appropriately labelled, as well as testing for cannabinoid and terpenoid profiles. And the dispensary should be willing to share this information with you. 


Not always necessary – but it is a bonus to have a well known, established dispensary. It’s always good to have recommendations from local physicians or nurses, as well as other cannabis activists in the area.