To compete with big box retailers, it is imperative for independent pharmacists to have a digital strategy. We walk you through the top four myths we hear from pharmacists around their hesitation with going digital.
By Anyssa Garza, PharmD, BCMAS – Digital Pharmacist Staff
At Digital Pharmacist, we work with over 7,500 local community pharmacies. We understand what creating a digital strategy means to you, and why you may (or may not) think it is important.
During these conversations, the same four misconceptions around going digital continue to pop up. With that, here’s the top four myths about going digital – debunked.
The top 4 myths, Debunked
1. My patients are older and they will never use an app.
One of the most common things we hear is “our patients would never use an app.” The data, however, tells a different story. 46% of people 65+ and 73% of people ages 50-64 are using mobile apps and those percentages increase the younger the age range gets.
As time goes on, this younger generation of tech savvy mobile users will become the majority of the population. Not to mention, as of 2017, the millennial population had about $1.3 trillion in annual buying power. Furthermore, millennials are estimated to reach $1.4 trillion in annual spending by 2020—roughly one-third of all retail spending.
If this is not convincing, millennials in the U.S. outnumber Baby Boomers by nearly 10%. This means millennials are the nation’s largest living generation, as of 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
2. My community already knows me and my pharmacy… I do not need a presence online.
Regardless of whether or not your community is aware of your pharmacy, most patients expect the convenience of 24/7 refills and access to information via the web or smartphones. What happens when a patient needs to submit a refill after your pharmacy is closed? Offering the option for 24/7 digital refills helps you capture those patients and refills that would otherwise be lost when your pharmacy is closed.
3. My business relies on customer service and not on online service.
In today’s age of technology, the two go hand-in-hand. Being digital takes convenience to the next level, which translates into great customer service. Just because the interaction is online doesn’t mean your patients are missing out on a positive customer experience. At the end of the day, they are getting customer service both online and inside your pharmacy.
4. I can’t afford to be digital.
Taking a refill over the phone will take about 5 minutes of your staff’s time not mention the inconvenience factor for the patient. Compare this with a digital refill which is effortless for you and easy and convenient for your patients.
Plus, almost half of digital refills happen when the pharmacy is closed. Digital refills help you capture patients who 1) want to refill online or via an app and 2) refill when they want including times when the pharmacy is closed. Going digital streamlines your operation and in turn, can save you and your staff time that can be better utilized in other revenue generating opportunities. With the growing number of people online, you can’t afford not to be online.
To learn more about how Digital Pharmacist platform is debunking these myths and making it easy and cost-effective for community pharmacists to be digital, schedule time with our Pharma Bot!