It is truly a calling to run an independent pharmacy. People who choose to be in this line of work do it because it’s immensely fulfilling, both on a professional and a personal level. You must know that the teams that support the pharmacists and the pharmacists themselves are vital to the well-being and health of both the communities they serve and your business.
There are many things you need to know when you run a pharmacy, and the drug commercialization process is only one of them. Let’s take a quick peek at a few other things that you need to know if you want to be successful in your endeavor.
Owners of pharma companies aren’t the only ones who need to be careful. Pharmacy owners also need to ensure that their staff is active when it comes to the sales process – specifically in the consultative part of it. One thing is that an employee should never answer a question by saying they don’t know. They should immediately find an answer as quickly as possible. This might be in person, via email, or on the phone, but follow-up is critical in this process. They should also recognize the necessary level of engagement for each customer. As an example, an elderly person may require a different service level than the rushed exec who only has time to come on their lunch break.
Independent pharmacies tend to run on thin profit margins. This is the force that drives them to control their costs while still having the ability to provide the service and quality that their clients have come to expect from a business they think of as a healthcare partner.
Do you appreciate being pressured into buying something you don’t truly have a need for? Probably not. Not too many people do. You should try to be ready to demonstrate clearly what the value of a purchase is to your customers. You might upsell by suggesting private or off-label products or ones that complement whatever they’re already buying. Be sure you point out exactly how it might save them a bit of money. As an example, if they’re purchasing a medication that has a side effect of dehydration, let them know that the spring water currently on sale is of great value.
By not pushing purchases that aren’t necessary and having knowledge of the savings your customers will get for whatever you suggest they buy, you’re actually increasing the transparency of your business, and this will increase the trust you get from your customers.
You don’t need to be a large chain pharmacy to offer your customers a loyalty program. These can be as complex or as simple as you choose to make them. You might do something as simple as offering customers 10% off coupons when they make larger purchases. Put your minimum purchase requirements right on the coupons, and this can easily increase your sales. It also gives your customers additional power when making purchases. As you continue doing this kind of promotion, you’ll start to notice some of their purchasing patterns, and this data can assist you with the creation of additional rewards.
Running any type of business can be rewarding financially, but if you run an independent pharmacy, you’ll also be able to realize professional and personal rewards that go far beyond your financial bottom line. By using the tips you’ve just read, your business can continue providing the excellence and quality your customers have come to expect. You can also continue to maintain a respected and strong presence in your community while maintaining your profit margin.