[Part 2] Tips from Dispensary Design Experts with Megan Stone

In our latest series, we are exploring how dispensary owners can differentiate themselves from the competition. Retail experiences that leave a lot to be desired will only continue to survive for so long, as savvy brands are poised to leapfrog them… if they haven’t already.

These successful dispensaries which are breaking away all have one thing in common – they are investing in the customer experience and proactively shedding the old school “pot shop” vibe.

In part 2 of our three part series, we sat down with Megan Stone from High Road Design Studios.  


Megan has helped arm cannabis retailers with the power of design to combat stigma, overcome stereotypes and reinvent people’s perceptions of cannabis and those who use it. “The important thing to remember about that initial touchpoint is that it is the first impression of your brand,” said Stone. “It sets customer expectations for the experience at every touchpoint that follows.”


What is an often overlooked design element for dispensaries?

Megan: Lighting. People often think about their materials, product displays and furnishings, but a key piece of the design of any retail setting is the lighting program. Whether it’s ambient lighting or product level lighting, drawing attention and focus to the right things in your space can make or break the quality of the experience for your shoppers.


In your opinion, is there a common design element that should be avoided? Why?

Megan: Whenever possible, avoid single points of entry and exit. In high volume dispensaries, this can create bottlenecks right where you don’t want them. When customers are crossing paths as they enter and exit, it can disrupt these key moments in the customer journey. Separate entry and exit points are preferable. However, if only one point of entry is possible, try to use a double door instead of a single door to support better traffic flow.


What part of the design process do you like best?

Megan: I really enjoy programming and space planning. It’s the core of a successful design. This part of the process determines how people will move through the space and experience it.


Do you have a favorite project you’ve worked on?

Megan: Picking favorite projects is like picking favorite children. They have their good days and bad days. They all are unique and have a special place in my heart.


To learn more about dispensary design and delivering experiences that educate consumers and turn them into loyal customers, check out our recent eBook.


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