For pharmacies, it has become more important than ever to have a strategy in place for the add on sales that make up for shrinking prescription margins. There’s no one size fits all solution to make this happen, but there are some key things that every pharmacy can focus on to improve front-end sales.
These are some of the top tips taken from a recent CLIMB panel discussion with experts Gary Glisson and Stephanie Zimmerman.
Take advantage of the time you’re in front of your patients- Any time you have a patient fill out a form, or chat with them one on one, you have an opportunity to gather data that can be used later. Add questions that can help you better help patients to your vaccination and patient intake forms. Ask questions like “Are you having issues with pain, sleep or anxiety?”. Or “are you taking a multivitamin or probiotic. Also make sure you get an email address. While this may seem a little daunting, or simply uncomfortable to start, we think you’ll find that for the most part, patients like to interact with their pharmacy team and are generally open to answering questions.
Use the data in your pharmacy and point-of-sale system – Now it’s all about making use of the data you’ve gathered, plus all the other data that’s created with every prescription fill and patient interaction. Data in your pharmacy system can help you make appropriate recommendations to patients based on questions you’ve answered. And the data in your point-of-sale reports will help you understand what areas of your pharmacy are profitable. Once you understand the data, that’s when you can manage it and make improvements.
Grab the low hanging fruit – There are a couple of areas where many pharmacies find high profit margins on add on sales. One of these is supplements like multivitamins, probiotics and more. You can even recommend supplements based on drug induced nutrient depletion using a point-of-sale integrated program. CBD products also represent a growing opportunity for many pharmacy businesses. Of course, these are just a couple of options. If neither of them offers a good fit for your pharmacy, think about other areas where you might use data and expertise to create add on sales.
Become a go to expert in specific areas of your pharmacy – Remember that pharmacists consistently rank as some of the most trusted professionals. That trust and expertise are valuable, so use them to your advantage. Whether you’re focusing on supplements, CBD, point-of-care testing, DME or something else entirely, make your pharmacy a destination for that product or service.
Educate your staff – None of these strategies count for much if you don’t educate your staff in the systems, processes, sales strategies and more. Make sure they know how to use the technology available to them. Your vendor might offer training programs tailored to your goals. Team members should be comfortable with product discussions to the extent possible and know when to bring in a pharmacist to answer patient questions and offer guidance.
Use testimonials – When patients experience positive outcomes, share their successes. If a patient tells you that your advice on a new product helped them, you can put that quote on your website and place a display or sign next to the product. Testimonials are incredibly powerful marketing tools.
Marketing matters – Use the data you’ve created and gathered. Whether it’s a targeted email with coupons, or a newsletter with tips and upcoming deals. Or maybe just a place where you share important health information. Emails and social are a great way to keep the lines of communication open with your customers and to keep your business top of mind for them.
You can watch the full panel discussion for in depth information on these topics and more. CLIMB registrants can watch previous CLIMB content any time. And registration is just a couple of clicks away!Reserve Your Seat Today!