When recreational cannabis was first implemented in Colorado and Washington State two years ago, consumers were met with a sometimes confusing and frustrating buying process. One dispensary could offer a strain for half of the price of their local competitors. Prices were a bit more predictable, consumer based and market-driven when recreational sales in Oregon started last fall, but there seems to still be a need for a user-driven cannabis search service that caters to less experienced consumers.
According to their blog, Daniel Nelson, founder and CEO of Wikileaf saw that need, so he and his colleagues designed the site to stress price transparency in the industry. Wikileaf enables cannabis users to get the right strains in their area at the best price.
Wikileaf’s website gets about 150,000 unique monthly visits from patients in various U.S. states. While the majority of the site’s users are looking for medical dispensaries, they have been expanding to include recreational cannabis searches in Colorado, Washington and Oregon. Alaska has also legalized, but legislatures have been unable to reach an accord on how to regulate the state’s industry.
The Wikileaf site is designed for users to browse dispensaries by cost, and directly compare prices. Site users type in how much weed they want to buy and then can see average prices for dispensaries in their area. Search filters allow users to find specific strains, with results giving basic information like average THC level and typical effects.
This cannabis search website model is not a unique thing. However, the people at Wikileaf seem to think that they are competing with better-known cannabis search brands like Leafly by appealing to a broader market. Wikileaf gives fewer specifics on strains and the effects, which could make the site easy to navigate and understand for newbies. User accessibility is a top priority for the Seattle based business.
Wikileaf was acquired by Nesta Holding co. in 2015. The cannabis search engine service has expanded to accommodate queries from 12 different states and is always looking to add more strains and dispensaries to its roster.
As the legal cannabis industry continues to expand and grow, so will the need for its related technology. Just like the effects of specific strains on individuals, one size usually doesn’t fit all.
Do you use a cannabis search engine like Leafly or Wikileaf? If so, which one is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!