So, you’ve seen the CBD craze as it’s grown, and now you’re wondering how to start a CBD business in the UK?
Well, yes, it’s not so hard to start a CBD business. But succeeding? That’s a different game. Be aware that even though it’s quite simple to setup your CBD brand, source your legal cannabis products and even setup an online store – there are numerous challenges that you might face on your way to making your CBD brand work.
In this guide we’ll look at how to start a CBD business in the UK (and by extension, globally), the best practice to get up and running and look at some of the challenges you might experience.
Step One: Research your market
If you’re going to start a CBD business in the UK, it’s important that you know the market. Researching your target audience and competitors will help ensure that your product is relevant and competitive. For example, is there a demand for CBD face creams? Is there already a lot of choice for CBD edibles? Or is there a gap in the market for a CBD oil?
You can also use this time to familiarize yourself with any regulations that may affect your CBD business (for instance, if they require certain certifications).
People looking for CBD products are often looking for a ‘natural’ solution, so you may also need to look into vegan, organic or locally produced certifications.
Step Two: Branding
Like any successful brand, it will often come down to your branding. Things such as your logo, your typeface (font), imagery and even brand voice will have a big influence in your future success.
This branding will often depend on who you are targeting with your CBD products.
Looking to target the Gen-Z market? Make it fun and funky, and go for emojis and trending terms.
Offering CBD products to the older generations? Work out how you can make the brand appealing to them, but avoid alienating other potential audience segments.
Step Three: Your business plan
Every business needs a plan. And CBD businesses in the UK are no different.
Your business plan should look at:
- Cost to setup your business (branding, website, online shop etc)
- Sourcing your product
- Any additional certifications needed
- Logistics such as storage, shipping and accounting for spoilage and breakages
- Marketing and customer service
Planning any business can be a headache. But it is often better to get started, rather than sweat the details.
But that said, you should never start any business without having a roadmap of some sort.
Step Four: Create your product
Now it’s time to create, or source, your CBD products. This can be in any form from oil or tincture to capsules and creams. You could even consider making CBD-infused food products such as cookies or brownies, but these will require more time if you want to get them right!
Although you can buy CBD oil wholesale and make your own products, it is probably a better idea to hire a professional team to do it for you. There are plenty of companies in the UK that can create CBD products to your specifications.
CBD wholesale or white label is easy to find online, so shop around and see what you can find.
Once you’ve created your product and tested it for quality control purposes, you’ll need to get your brand out there.
Step Five: Marketing your product
When it comes to marketing CBD products, there is a definite challenge that many face. For starters, you can’t use paid ads such as Google Ads to promote CBD brands. Facebook also frown on cannabis based products – so you’ll need to focus on other channels.
CBD marketers tend to focus heavily on a mixture of social media, affiliate marketing, organic content (blogging, videos etc) and influencer marketing.
While many of these take time to get traction going, they can be great once you get the wheels rolling. Hiring a CBD marketing company is one way to take the strain and get your brand seen.
CBD marketing is definitely more challenging than growing a normal wellness brand. But by understanding the challenges in advance, you should be able to plan for success.
Common problems for CBD brands
When it comes to growing a CBD product in the UK, or anywhere in the world, there are several typical problems you’ll need to overcome.
Firstly, many companies don’t want to be seen to do business with cannabis brands. This can include banks and payment platforms, which can obviously be a problem if you want to get paid. In the UK, most high street banks will not work with cannabis based companies including CBD brands.
But for taking payments, Vivawallet will work with UK based CBD brands.
We’ve also mentioned that marketing is a problem as you can’t use typical paid media. However, CBD brands can still use organic marketing on both social media and search engine content. A good content strategy can still be a huge help for CBD brands in the UK.
Starting a UK based CBD company is not so tricky, but there are definitely some hurdles you’ll need to jump through. With that being said, the UK CBD market is currently worth over £700 million and is predicted to hit £1 billion by 2025. So now is definitely a good time to get into the CBD business.