Credit cards have become a commonly accepted payment in the U.S. and around the world, and your cannabis business has much to gain from making this available to your customers. 

Research on consumer payment preferences by BAI Research and Hitachi Consulting found that 41 percent of shoppers have reduced the amount of cash they use, and a whopping 97% indicated they were using debit and credit cards instead. With those kinds of numbers, it’s an obvious customer preference. 

But accepting credit cards brings more to the table than just convenience for customers. Cannabis dispensaries, processors, and wholesalers can benefit from offering credit card payments in five key ways:

1. Bring more legitimacy to your brand

As cannabis businesses emerge in the market, being able to display the logos of cards you accept on your website or at the in-store register gives you an edge over the competition. Offering to accept these payments builds rapport with your customers as a trustworthy vendor and will keep them coming back.

2. Increase sales

Cash-only policies certainly have their pros, but the list of negatives is long. One of those down sides is that customers can only purchase as much as the cash they brought with them will allow. Being more flexible and accepting credit card payments gives customers the flexibility to spend more at their convenience. It will also attract more customers who want an easy and legal way to pay that doesn’t attract attention. Especially in busy areas, it can be stressful for people to have to carry a large amount of cash to make a purchase. 

3. Improve cash flow

The speed at which money gets into your business’s bank account is paramount to keeping operations moving efficiently. With the swipe of a card (or the wave of a chip), the money will be on its way to your account, quickly settled and processed within a matter of days in most cases. No more waiting for the large cash deposits to be made by employees to receive all the funds. And speaking of those large cash deposits…

4. Increase safety for onsite staff

When a business is cash-only, the large stacks in the safe can attract theft and burglary. This increases the possibility of staff getting hurt while onsite or while transporting funds for purchases or deposits. Accepting credit cards allows for more transactions to be digital, which means that most transactions will be swift and relatively painless with no coins to count. 

5. Reduce the risk of theft

Having a great deal of cash on-hand can attract unwanted attention. Burglars will often cause property damage while in the act of taking any cash or product they can find. All payments made by credit or debit card are safe, though. The logos of accepted credit cards on your door sends a message to would-be thieves that you are more than just a cash business. 

Has your business begun to accept credit or debit cards? What obstacles have you seen along the way? We want to hear about it in the comments below. 

About the Author: Brian Ellis

With 6 years' experience in business journalism, Brian is the person we turn to for anything related to the business of cannabis. His news coverage spans topics including marijuana business and finance. Brian's work features on,, , and