Starting a Business / CBD

5 Keys to Choosing The Best CBD Distributor

Not all wholesale CBD companies are created equal. Before partnering up, look for these factors.
5 Keys to Choosing The Best CBD Distributor
Image credit: OlegMalyshev | Getty Images
Guest Writer
Founder of Joy Organics
6 min read
Opinions expressed by Green Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As the CBD market explodes, more and more retailers are partnering with CBD brands. Doing so lets business owners provide their customers with the products they want. But it can also lead to a conundrum: How do you find and choose the right CBD oil distributor for your company?

During my time in the CBD oil business, I've unfortunately learned that there are many substandard products and brands out there. But I've also found that reputable businesses have a way of shining through. Great CBD oil companies tend to excel in five key areas. If you're considering adding CBD oil to your business, look for these five factors.

Related: Report: CBD Market To Hit $22 Billion By 2022

1. Choose a high-quality product

There's really no nice way to put this: There's a whole lot of junk out there in the CBD market. Different extraction methods and different formulations lead to a huge variety of products and price ranges. Unfortunately, very few of these products are effective. Use these four guidelines to find a product you can trust.

  • Full-spectrum: If you're going to represent a CBD brand, it should be a brand that is full-spectrum. Unlike CBD isolates, full-spectrum CBD products contain a wide variety of beneficial cannabinoids, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, protein, chlorophyll, terpenes, flavonoids, and fiber that, when combined, produce enhanced results (also known as the entourage effect). A 2015 study entitled “Overcoming the Bell-Shaped Dose-Response of Cannabidiol by Using Cannabis Extract Enriched in Cannabidiol" found that full-spectrum CBD was more effective than isolates in treating inflammatory conditions. Choosing a full-spectrum product gives your customers better results. It's that simple.

  • THC free: If it's important to you to sell a family-friendly product that anyone can use, look for an oil that is THC free. THC is the cannabinoid that makes you high. As a simple rule of thumb, if a brand isn't promoting that their product is THC free, it isn't. The process to remove THC from CBD oil creates a much higher expense for the manufacturer, so many brands choose not to do it. It may cost more, but in my experience, it's worth it to provide the option of non-psychoactive product.

  • Consistency: You'll find some companies create their own broad spectrum formula. While you may get more benefits from these products than from an isolate, these formulations tend to be inconsistent. Look for a brand that uses consistent formulations from batch to batch to ensure you know what you're getting.

  • Variety: Choose a wholesale CBD company that provides a number of different delivery methods. Products like tinctures, softgels, vapes, and salves best address different needs. Work with a business that provides a variety to ensure your customer's needs are met.​​​​​​

Related: What You Need to Know About The Endocannabinoid System

2. Choose a company with great service

The current level of growth in the CBD market is leaving most companies overwhelmed. Poorly run CBD distributors are not set up to provide a high level of service. As a result, many retailers find themselves dealing with delayed orders, missing product, and unreturned phone calls. As you choose a CBD partner, choose a company that has a level of service that leaves you feeling confident.

3. Choose a company that fits with your standards

As you consider companies to partner with, take a close look at their branding. Any brand you partner with will reflect on you. Ask yourself which brands align well with the image you want to project.

Product packaging is a great litmus test. How are their products presented? Are items sold loosely, or presented in boxes? Are the materials high quality? Is the packaging easy to display? Is the overall effect in line with other products in your store? Will it appeal to the customers you service or want to attract? Align yourself with a quality brand for the best results.

4. Choose a company with logical pricing and product selection

As you look at a company's pricing and product line, compare their offerings with your target market's ability to afford them. Most full-spectrum CBD products fall within the same price range. What differs is the types of products and the strength of their formulations. This is where it is important to understand your customers' wants and needs.

Formulation strength is where you'll notice the biggest misalignment between price point and customer interest. You'll find companies offering 2000 mg or 3000 mg formulas. Not many people are buying these. Instead, they choose formulations that are less potent, less expensive, yet still effective. For most retailers, it makes sense to focus in on these products.

Another thing to think about is the broad appeal of the products you offer. There are a lot of funky CBD products out there. I've seen items like CBD cookies and CBD spices sell very poorly. I recommend staying mainstream with the products you sell. Choose a brand that offers tinctures, softgels, salves, and other products your customers have experience with.

Related: How to Start and Market Your CBD Company

5. Choose a company with great marketing support

A company with strong marketing support will make your life much easier when it comes to educating your customers and employees on the benefits of CBD. Some good questions to ask when evaluating a brand's marketing support:

  • Does the company provide brochures?

  • Does the company make samples available to purchase that you can distribute to your customers?

  • Does the company provide product displays?

  • Does the company provide signage, banners, and other materials?

  • Can you access education materials for yourself and your employees?

  • What other marketing assistance is available that you could benefit from?

As the CBD market continues to explode, it's likely that the number of irreputable wholesale CBD businesses and products will also rise. Fret not. A small amount of research can go a long way in helping you choose the right partner for your establishment. Use these five keys as a guide to finding the partners and products that will enrich your business and improve your customer's lives.


 
By Javier Hasse
From retailers to growers, producers, and suppliers, there’s a seemingly never-ending list of startup opportunities in this emerging market. In Start Your Own Cannabis Business, marijuana, biotech, and entrepreneurship reporter Javier Hasse introduces forward-thinking entrepreneurs like you to the industry and shares hard-earned tips and success stories from pioneers and visionaries in the marijuana industry.
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