Hemp is a unique, often misunderstood and extremely versatile plant.
There are many great uses for hemp and it’s not until you really dig into things that this becomes abundantly clear. At least, that was my experience.
The question is though, can you make money selling it? Absolutely.
Let me be clear though, I am not a hemp growing expert. I have never grown this stuff myself, and I have zero plans to do so. You do not need to grow this stuff to make money selling it. That is a fact. In this article, I’ll give you some insight into the hemp industry overall, and discuss how you can turn a profit with hemp beyond just growing it yourself.
What Is Hemp?
The answer to this question is not as black and white as I first thought. It seems just this one question is the source of a LOT of confusion among people. This is largely due to the relationship between Hemp and Marijuana and how the look near identical.
According to Wikipedia: Both plants come from the same plant species known as Cannabis Sativa, but they are actually different strains grown for different purposes. The THC component of Hemp is much lower than Marijuana, which is the part that makes you high. There are only trace elements of this within Hemp which means you cannot get high from it. Hemp also has a much higher amount of Cannabidiol (CBD) oil than Marijuana which counteracts the effects of THC.
In other words, they are the same species, but different strains of plant grown for different purposes. One gets you high, one doesn’t. There is more detail to this, but for the scope of this article, that’s all that matters.
Hemp Industry Overview
According to a 2015 CRS report, the annual sales volume within the United States Hemp market is estimated at $580 million per year and there is said to be a positive growth trend globally for hemp based products.
A large percentage of hemp based products are coming into the US from China, Canada and other countries though, which means local US farmers aren’t reaping the full benefits here and they are competing on price with foreign companies. This may change in the future, but only time will tell.
Also, depending on where you live, some countries and states are all for growing hemp, while others aren’t. If you live in the United States for example, you must obtain a permit from the DEA or risk federal charges. Yep. It’s a ‘no go’ at present.
By all means, growing it yourself is possible. If you can get approval and have the capital to invest, go for it.
But what opportunities exist for entrepreneurs who do not want to grow hemp?
As I mentioned earlier, there is a very real opportunity here. You just need to know how to find it, and tap into it.
Finding Profitable ‘Niche’ Opportunities
Unless you plan on growing it yourself… you do not want to just try and sell hemp to everyone.
This is just too broad and there are much better and smarter ways of doing things. You want to drill down and find more targeted opportunities within this space.
There are many hemp based products in the market, and as you would imagine, some are more popular than others. To get a gauge on the opportunity within this space, it’s worth looking into some trend data.
I like to use Google trends, as it shows you accurate data on what people are searching for online which gives you a good indication of what people are interested in buying.
To show you an example of what I mean, check out the screenshot below is trend data for the search term “Hemp oil”:
As you can see, the interest in hemp oil is exploding online. There is no disputing this. However, interest in “Hemp Clothing” remains quite steady as you can see below:
My point being, the opportunities vary within the overall ‘hemp’ industry so you want to sort the weeds from the
Anyways, that’s just one quick example to show you what I mean. The following list will give you some examples of ‘targeted niche ideas’ you could base a profitable business around within this industry.
Jewellery: There are bracelets, necklaces, rings and even watches made by knotting hemp twine together among many other styles. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but there certainly are people who are interested in this and will pay for it.
Foods and Nutrition: There are various kinds of hemp based food products in the market from toasted hemp seed snacks, protein supplements, juices, milks and oils among others. The common trait between these products is they all have a relatively high amount of plant based protein, they’re rich in Omega 3’s and have plenty of fibre.
Housing Insulation: This one is very cool indeed, it’s a mix of hemp and lime bonded together to make an eco friendly, and very practical insulation. It keeps you home cooler in summer and warmer in winter as you would expect, but it also absorbs moisture and humidity within the dwelling which is pretty cool. The product I am referring to is called ‘HempCrete’ and I had not heard of this until now, but it sounds very interesting.
Paper: Products such as art paper, toilet paper, cigarette and cigar paper, tea bags and filter papers are common uses of hemp based paper products. They don’t appear to be very popular these days though, but worth a mention.
Animals: It’s not all about us humans, there are hemp products for Dogs, Cats, Horses, and more. Items such as food, supplements, bedding and coats among others make this a very interesting and potentially profitable avenue.
Cosmetics: Apparently, hemp makes for great cosmetic products. Makes sense, given how moisture rich it is I suppose. I couldn’t see how popular these products are on my initial research, but there is a growing interest in natural skin care products in general so there is potential here.
Textiles: Carpets, rugs, linen and other textiles made from hemp are popular choices among eco conscious consumers.
Clothing: This is quite a common and obvious one. There has been a steady interest in hemp clothing for years, and it may very well continue that way. Apparently, this clothing is more breathable and is mold and mildew resistant. It’s also a better choice for the environment.
These are some of the main niche ideas within the hemp industry worth looking into, but there are other ideas I am sure. Get creative.
Make Money Selling Other People’s Hemp Online
The concept of selling other people’s products online may be new to you, but it’s actually quite simple when you break it down.
The first step is to pick a topic and build a simple website. Any one of the examples above are potential topics, and can easily form the basis of a profitable website within the broader ‘hemp’ space.
The second step is to get interested people to your website through Google. I know this may seem a little scary, but it truly is possible and you don’t need to be some kind of marketing guru. Not even close.
Third, you promote other companies products to the people who visit your website. A simple text link or banner advertizement are common ways in which most websites promote other people’s products.
This works incredibly well because you have a targeted group of people visiting your website and you are offering them a relevant product they would naturally be interested in buying. So, if they decide to buy something through your website, you earn a commission.
This business model is called affiliate marketing, and there are many advantages. This is how I make money on the internet myself, so I know first hand the process works. You can learn the specifics of how all of this works through a platform called Wealthy Affiliate. They give you some free beginner lessons and a free website to get you rolling.
This is how I learned to do affiliate marketing myself. It’s a great way to get started.
There’s no doubt about it, Hemp is an amazing product, and by following the right process you can make money selling it.
As you can see from the examples I provided earlier, there are a number of different niche ideas within the hemp industry. Believe it or not, each one of these ideas can form the basis of a profitable website.
While getting everything setup is dead simple with the technology available these days, it is not a ‘quick and easy’ approach to making money by any means. But you can do this and it can become a part-time or even full-time income with enough effort.
If you are more interested in growing it yourself, cool. But when you weigh up the pros and cons of each approach, affiliate marketing is an attractive model to consider.