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Brighten Up! 8 Smart Tips for Surviving the Summer Slump

Host a cannabis event, divide up displays, reach out to loyal customers — winning solutions to drive sales during retail’s sweltering slow period.


COMMUTINGTake a Hike, Ride a Bike

Even if gas prices weren’t still near historic highs, it would be a good time to find alternative ways to get to work rather than adding to traffic in your car. That’s because it’s always a good time to choose a non-vehicular commute, whether you’re biking, walking, skating or hop-scotching your way into the shop. Not everybody’s work location allows them to avoid the highway, but for those of us who can do it, the summer months are especially great for folding a little exercise into our daily work routine.

MANAGEMENTDivide and Conquer

Create “areas of pride” in your store to promote a fun spirit of competition and a better knowledge of inventory among the staff. How to do it? Assign each sales associate or budtender their own particular area to merchandise, promote and clean each month.


SALESSummer Slump Solution

Between the hot weather, people leaving town on vacation and no “gift giving” holidays in sight, summers can be a challenge for any retailer. To breathe life into this often-slow period, consider holding your biggest blow-out sale or promotion of the year. Break out the Rolodex and reach out to your most loyal customers. Invite them to a midsummer sales bash at your shop with double-digit discounts on slow-moving inventory.

EDUCATIONFlower Power Story Hour

Host a cannabis educational event at your store. Advertise it around town. Use slides, a projector or other means to create visuals for attendees. Have an outside expert lead the lesson or even better, challenge yourself or staff to do it.

MANAGEMENTForce a Real Decision

Here’s a trick for getting real, actionable feedback from your partners and employees. The next time you ask for their opinion on a business-related matter—say, to rate a job candidate, a new product line or a business proposition—ask them for a score between 1-10 but tell them they can’t choose seven. Seven is a fudge, says speaker and author Kyle Maynard. Force the person to choose between at least an eight—they’re genuinely excited by the prospect—or a six, which usually indicates they’d pass on it.

DISPLAYLighten Up the Mood

It’s summer, so embrace the long days of sultry sunlight! Lighten the mood in your store and on your shelves and showcases. Unclutter your display spaces for a breezier look and feel that better aligns with the spirit of summer. Try to highlight brighter and lighter colors in your product placement and decorations.



It can feel good to crush some work on the weekend, but as the owner of a business, it’s good to remember that your staff aren’t thinking about work 24/7, especially on the weekends. (They’ll actually be better workers if they can effectively switch off for a few days every week.) In line with this, use the “schedule send” tool to ensure your emails to employees arrive during business hours, no matter when you send them, says Tim Harford, writing in his “The Undercover Economist” column in the Financial Times. “This is a kindness, but also trains your colleagues not to expect instant responses.”

MANAGEMENTApply an Immediacy Filter

Life is an exercise in prioritization, but it can be hard to remember that when it comes to some vague unfilled time slot weeks away. Too often, we say “yes” to a request for action that’s far off in the future—and that can frequently cause us to over-commit our time. “When you get an invitation to do something in the future, ask yourself: Would you accept this if it was scheduled for tomorrow? Not too many promises will pass that immediacy filter,” notes Wired co-founder Kevin Kelly on his blog.

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