Shopify has become the most popular place to sell Cannabidiol (CBD) on the internet. The platform is ideal for new businesses requiring payments, shipping, and easy-to-build web pages. However, if you’re new to the industry, you need to be wary of several legal risks. This article will guide you through the steps you need to take to sell CBD on Shopify.
To sell CBD on Shopify, set up your store and submit your attestation form. Then set up payment and shipping services that comply with local CBD laws. If you’re selling products outside of the US, you must review the legal terms for your country/state. Shopify does not provide legal advice for CBD stores.
If you’re a small business selling hemp-derived products like CBD, Shopify is an ideal place to advertise and sell your products. But, unlike other products, the laws surrounding the sale of CBD products are different and vary in different regions.
However, if you follow some procedural guidelines, it will only be a matter of time before you have a thriving online store. Sales, shipping, and payments are effortless on Shopify.
Table of Contents
Build A CBD Store On Shopify
Before you get started with the process of building a CBD Shopify store, you need to review the federal, state, and local laws of the region that you’re living in. Shopify also recommends that you monitor any updates to these laws. Also, be aware of any new advice given by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Note: If you live outside of the United States, Shopify cannot provide you with an Attestation form, and specific laws and regulations may not apply to your CBD store.
Setting up a CBD Shopify store is as simple as signing up for a trial store if you haven’t created a store yet.
Following this, you need to review and submit the Attestation for the Sale of Hemp and Hemp-Derived Products. However, the attestation is currently limited to store owners operating within the United States. The link will send you to the Shopify admin page if you operate in another region.
Once you’ve submitted your attestation, you do not need to wait for Shopify’s response. From there, you can move on to setting up your payments platform.
Shopify Payments, their built-in payment gateway, is not currently available for selling CBD products, and you will need to set up a third-party payment gateway.
Finally, you need to set up email notifications for orders and shipping. Unfortunately, SMS notifications are not supported for CBD stores on Shopify.
Once you’ve set up your CBD store on Shopify, you can set up a CBD merchant account on a third-party platform like Bankcard. First, you must fill out a form that asks for more details about your business. For example, how long have you been operating, and what are your anticipated sales volumes?
A third party will review your application, and you’ll likely have to submit a few additional documents to get your account verified.
Once you’ve set up your payment gateway, you need to edit your shipping zones. You must ensure that you only ship your products to customers from the states or regions where CBD products are legal.
Where Can You Sell CBD On Shopify?
In 2019, Shopify began supporting the sale of hemp and hemp-derived CBD products in the United States. However, you can only sell it in states where CBD sales are legal.
Fortunately, the 2014 Farm Bill kickstarted a wave of legalization across the US, and there are now just three states where CBD is illegal: Idaho, South Dakota, and Nebraska.
By 2018, Hemp-sourced CBD was federally legalized as a consequence of the 2018 Hemp Farming Act and the repurposed 2018 Farm Bill (officially the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018).
However, it is essential to note that CBD is only legal for medicinal purposes in many of these states. The states where both recreational and medical marijuana is legal are:
- Washington State
- Washington DC
Therefore, when setting up shipping zones on Shopify, you need to ensure that your products intended for recreational use are not sold in states where it isn’t legal.
If you live outside of the United States, there are six countries in which cannabis is legal for both recreational and medical purposes, including Canada, Uruguay, Georgia, Malta, Mexico, and South Africa.
However, the sale of recreational cannabis is only legal in Canada. Uruguay prohibits the purchase of cannabis for recreational purposes. But it is prohibited for foreigners. The rest of these countries have not legalized sales.
Once again, you must familiarize yourself with the legislation and other legal details surrounding the sale of CBD products. Shopify does not offer legal advice on CBD sales, so compliance is up to you.
Can You Sell THC Products on Shopify?
Many people may be confused by the difference between CBD and THC, which can blur the lines between what’s legal and what isn’t.
The 2018 Farm Bill clearly states that hemp- or cannabis-derived products may only contain a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of up to 0.3%, while some places such as the UK will only permit the sale of CBD products that are completely THC-free.
Countries in the European Union only permit concentrations of 0.2% or less, while Switzerland limits that figure to 0.1%. Before setting up your Shopify store and editing your shipping zones, you need to consider this legal issue.
So, now that you know how to set up a Shopify account for your budding CBD store, you have all the necessary information to get started! But you cannot overlook the legal implications of selling products that fall into many legal grey areas in different regions.
Before you get started, we recommend seeking legal advice to ensure that you don’t land yourself in hot water.