I’ll admit it – I’m a total tech geek. So, you can imagine I was pretty excited when I found out I was getting the chance to interview the CEO of Wikileaf.com. If you haven’t been to Wikileaf yet I highly recommend giving it a test run. They took the idea of dispensary location and flipped it on its head. What do I mean by that? Check out my interview below to find out.
Mary Jane’s Diary (MJD): When was Wikileaf created, and what kind of growth have you seen?
Dan (D): The idea of Wikileaf came to me in late 2012 and I began working on it with a few developers in early 2013. It took us a good 9 months of building the platform before we finally launched the product on Wikileaf.com on January 22, 2014. Since we launched a year and 4 months ago we’ve received a great deal of press. We were even featured as one of Entrepreneur Magazine’s Top 100 Brilliant Business Ideas of 2014. That was a huge confidence boost for us but more importantly a positive signal that main stream business publications were starting to take Cannabis companies, and the industry as a whole, more seriously. Since January of 2014 we’ve seen our traffic grow steadily at roughly 20% month over month. We just hit 250,000 pageviews last month and expect to be at 1,000,000 pageviews monthly by April of 2016.
MJD: Can you tell us a little bit about the team members over at Wikileaf?
D: As far as the Wikileaf team goes, I have one full stack project manager that I’ve worked with for years who has 2 full time employees under him and another part time designer. We also have 2 data entry/research people and a writer who compiles our strain content…so including myself we’re a lean team of 6!
MJD: There are several dispensary locator sites to choose from. What makes Wikileaf different?
D: What sets Wikileaf apart from the other dispensary locator sites out there is that we use a reverse auction model. This means that the consumer specifies how much he/she intends to spend at the dispensary and then the results are filtered based on how many grams he/she can get for this price from various dispensaries and/or delivery services in her neighborhood. We feel it’s the most consumer-centric model out there and allows us to display far more price points than simply how much for a gram, eighth, quarter, etc.
MJD: What has been the toughest part of starting and/or running Wikileaf?
D: The toughest part of running Wikileaf has been time management. My natural focus is and always has been on building the product. Regularly adding the features that dispensaries and consumers have requested and keeping the overall design simple and slick. Unfortunately there is a lot more to building a company than simply focusing on the product. Seeking out investors and continually keeping dialogue open between us and our clients (dispensaries) is something we need to invest more of our time on moving forward.
MJD: What does the future hold for Wikileaf? Any upcoming developments you can tell us about?
D: We’re constantly adding features to the site. We release a new update roughly every month. Last month we just launched our premium partner dispensary platform. This enables the dispensaries and delivery services we work closest with to have higher visibility on our site. We also add data on new Cannabis strains regularly and are always welcoming new dispensaries and delivery services onto the site. Plus, stay tuned for both our Apple and Android apps that will launch later this year or early 2016!
MJD: Which do you prefer – indica or sativa?
D: I’m almost always into Indica. It’s far more relaxing for me and more mellow than Sativa. That’s not to say I never enjoy a good Sativa though. If I’m out and about with some friends during the day being active we’ll opt for a Sativa. We usually hit up Sativa’s for instance when we’re up early in the morning fishing since those strains seem to be more of a stimulant. But most of the time I’m all about the mellow Indica high.
When I’m doing interviews and reviews I’m not just looking for good products (although that part is super important). I’m also looking for good people who work behind the scenes to bring these products and services to life. Dan is a super cool guy who really seems to care about the cannabis community.
Go to wikileaf.com, and tell me what you think in the comments below.