Election

Marijuana Sales Jumped Nationwide on Election Week

Dispensary sales have been on the rise for most of 2020, but they saw an even bigger jump during election week.
Dispensary sales have been on the rise for most of 2020, but they saw an even bigger jump during election week. Jacqueline Collins
click to enlarge Dispensary sales have been on the rise for most of 2020, but they saw an even bigger jump during election week. - JACQUELINE COLLINS
Dispensary sales have been on the rise for most of 2020, but they saw an even bigger jump during election week.
Jacqueline Collins
If you found yourself relieving the stress of voting by indulging in marijuana, you weren't alone. Online dispensary orders across the country made a huge jump on election day, according to marijuana e-commerce company I Heart Jane. And even though Coloradans were able to vote by mail, this state experienced its own major bump.

Jane compared online dispensary orders placed on its website from Tuesday, November 3, to those of the previous four Tuesdays, and found that 1,600 dispensaries using the service across the country saw a 60 percent rise in sales dollars on election day. The days immediately following also registered a rise, with November 4 and November 5 logging 46 percent and 37 percent increases, respectively, over similar adjusted averages from past weeks.

The 202 Colorado dispensaries using Jane experienced a 55.2 percent increase in sales figures on election day, according to the company, representing a customer increase of about 4,000 people. Although Colorado's election results were clear relatively early, Jane data shows that Colorado dispensaries kept bringing in the dough for the next two days, with pot shops seeing Jane orders rise 42.5 percent on November 4 compared to previous Wednesdays, and a 44.8 percent increase on November 5 compared to recent Thursdays.

Jane's data set only includes online orders, but because the coronavirus pandemic has increased online cannabis sales, Jane CEO Socrates Rosenfeld considers the data representative of cannabis sales trends.


click to enlarge An hour-by-hour breakdown of e-commerce cannabis sales on election day, November 3, compared to average Tuesday sales. - COURTESY OF I HEART JANE
An hour-by-hour breakdown of e-commerce cannabis sales on election day, November 3, compared to average Tuesday sales.
Courtesy of I Heart Jane
“17 percent of all orders at the beginning of the year were online, compared to the 83 percent that were offline,” Rosenfeld says. “At the peak of COVID, 52 percent of all orders were online, and that was about April or May. Today, though, it has settled at around 45 percent, so one out of every two orders is online versus offline.”

Although the legal pot market experiences predictable retail surges that correspond with holidays like stoner-favorite April 20 (aka 4/20), July 4 and Christmas, the increase in sales on election day is unusual, Rosenfeld says.

“Election day is new,” he explains. “Election day is perhaps a new every-four-years spike, but even in the midterm [elections], there was no spike. This one...there was a major spike in people ordering and shopping for cannabis.”

Marijuana products seeing the biggest spikes were those often used to relax or sleep, according to Jane ordering data. Tinctures and sublingual products had a 13.5 percent increase in sales, and capsules saw an 8.9 percent rise.

“I think the pandemic really highlighted [that], in times of stress and anxiety and uncertainty, people are starting to realize that cannabis is a product that they can rely on," Rosenfeld says. "It is really becoming a part of the American wellness routine.”

Marijuana wasn't the only in-demand indulgence on election day. Drizly, the e-commerce and alcohol delivery platform, reported a 68 percent increase in sales on November 3 compared to the previous four Tuesdays, while Grubhub reported that the most popular orders on election night were either cheesy, fried, or both.

"The big takeaway from all that data was that, Democrat or Republican, it doesn’t matter, no matter who you voted for for president," Rosenfeld concludes. "The one thing we could agree on was the fact that cannabis was here helping people, and will be here to stay." With voters in five different states approving recreational or medical legalization on election night, a 5-5 sweep, that point is hard to argue.
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Clara Geoghegan is a recent graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder, where she majored in anthropology with an emphasis on public health. She worked at Radio 1190’s News Underground and freelanced for Denverite. She is now the cannabis intern at Westword.
Contact: Clara Geoghegan