Powering the compliant cannabis market through visualization.
For Weedmaps, becoming the industry leader in all things cannabis wasn’t easy. Since its inception in 2008, the company has been on the front lines building technology that offers visibility to a variety of cannabis businesses through its SaaS-based product suit to deliver safe, legal and convenient access to consumers worldwide.
Like all e-commerce businesses, Weedmaps relies heavily on aligning its data science efforts with data analysts to build upon and develop a clear picture for several different domains that support its mission to power a transparent and inclusive global cannabis economy.
To help ramp up its capabilities and drive profitable and sustainable revenue through client engagement, Weedmaps named InfoMagnus to their Advanced Analytical team and Business Intelligence group to support in the development of custom data sets, data modeling, domain driven data analysis and custom dashboards powered by Tableau. Team members also assist in quality assurance to deliver on data quality efforts and feature release.
Engineering Growth While Delivering Business Critical Insights.
The popularity of Weedmaps has grown significantly since its humble beginnings. From 24 users in the first couple of months to an average of 1,500 visitors at the end of 2008, Weedmaps has skyrocketed to more than 12.1 million visitors per month with the average user spending more than 4 minutes on the site and averaging 4.13 pages per visit.
"The insights from Weedmaps’ Cannabis in America report validate what we see every day: The stigma around cannabis is fading as it becomes more embedded in our culture and daily lives,” said Chris Beals, CEO of WM Technology. “This report highlights attitudes and trends within the industry by providing data and information directly from consumers — an important step as we work towards the goal of building a transparent and inclusive cannabis economy.”
To harness and utilize the tsunami of data funneling in from the website and its Android and iOS applications, Weedmaps enlisted InfoMagnus data analysis's to deliver an API integration via Twilio Segment to better understand how users are interacting on the platform.
With insights that aim to unify customer touch points across platforms and channels, Weedmaps can act on website and app events that dive deep into individual user personas, while segmenting audiences to deliver messaging capabilities that reach the right customers at the right time.
To help increase the performance speed of data analysis queries, everything from website engagement data, to paid advertising, social interaction and email are collected from Segment and brought into Amazon Redshift where several different schemas are used to deliver extremely detailed user insights and behaviors. From there, InfoMagnus builds customized dashboards for product and marketing teams as well as leadership and investors to determine the current and future performance of its products and services.
Building The Future With AI-Driven Data Models.
As an online marketplace with thousands of products from hundreds of vendors, WeedMaps required a solution that would help them make sense of large and complex data sets, identify patterns and trends, help automate processes, while improving customer service and creating a more personalized experience.
In order to transform and modernize their current capabilities, InfoMagnus engineered three specific AI-driven, machine learning models that include: product classification; recency, frequency and monetary (RFM) values, and calculations for customer lifetime value.
Product Classification: With thousands of products covering a myriad of categories, Weedmaps needed a solution that would allow them to help support their curation team and reduce the tedious and manual efforts associated with product nuance. InfoMagnus developed a product classification algorithm, which uses an advanced deep-learning model to encode thousands of product names within their catalog. The new algorithm allows the curation team to process and deliver an extremely accurate cadence within product-like differentiation and can also be used to create custom recommendation engines.
RFM Modeling: The ability to understand and score high and low value customers is an important way for companies like Weedmaps to gather a holistic view of their audience.
The recency, frequency, and monetary value (RFM) model InfoMagnus developed can be used to segment customers based on their purchase behavior. This model looks at three factors: recency (how recently a customer has made a purchase), frequency (how often a customer makes a purchase), and monetary value (how much money a customer spends per purchase). By segmenting customers based on these factors, Weedmaps can better target their marketing and sales efforts. Additionally, the RFM model can also be used to predict customer churn and identify what customers are most likely to defect to a competitor.
Customer Lifetime Value: InfoMagnus also developed a customer lifetime value calculation that allows Weedmaps to determine the estimated revenue they can generate from a customer over the course of their relationship. The forecast delivers a 30, 60, and 90-day probability of an individual's loyalty to the Weedmaps brand. This calculation uses the lifetime library of Python developed by MIT and takes into account factors such as customer acquisition costs, retention rates, and average purchase values. Additionally, this calculation can also be used to help companies make decisions about marketing and pricing strategies with a 95% or higher accuracy rate.
Delivering High-Level Insights To Business Teams And Investors.
With revenues exceeding $193M in 2021, Weedmaps remains the largest e-commerce platform in the cannabis industry. But with competition around every corner, the company remains steadfast in its pursuit to continue building upon its technology and leveraging data to drive outcomes.
“… Weedmaps [is] beginning to make its unparalleled levels of cannabis industry data available to policy makers, cannabis business holders and industry investors to help them make more informed and accurate decisions,” said Beals.
Whether it is problem solving or visibility into several of the company’s domains, including products, storefronts, and delivery, leaders and advisors need access to metrics that provide daily, monthly and yearly KPIs and other operational data specific to each area of the business.
Known as “strategic pillars,” at Weedmaps, these areas of focus deliver insights to executives in the C-suite and investment arms, which allow them to make educated decisions and determinations for the clients it serves, the consumers it provides for and the many divisions within the company itself.
To allow teams, leadership, and advisors a complete 360-degree view of its business operations, InfoMagnus technologists work closely with management to analyze and assess several areas that are critical in delivering internal and global solutions. With visual insights powered by Tableau, InfoMagnus developed several customizable dashboards that give leadership the ability to consume and understand information easily, with the ability to break data down into different dimensions and attributes.
Armed with these insights, leadership can make better decisions and help develop better relationships with its retailers, expand offerings, increase revenue and increase its footprint throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, and beyond.