How to Sell More Skin Care Products (And Why Your Pharmacy Can)

How to Sell More Skin Care Products (And Why Your Pharmacy Can) by Elements magazine |

Skin care is often thought of as a category that revolves around beauty, but it can be a complement to your pharmacy’s service offerings, too.

A skin care section in your front end can function as a companion to your pharmacy’s care services, as a source for preventative health care tools, and it could even make your pharmacy a destination for skin care issues, if you make the category your pharmacy’s niche.

Skin care is one of the top five growth-opportunity categories for pharmacies, according to a 2015 study by Hamacher Resource Group (HRG). From 2011 to 2013, HRG found that skin care category products grew by 107 percent in community pharmacies, and the section is primed for continued growth.

Skin care can have many faces. Here’s a look at why a skin care department is important for your pharmacy, and how this category can enhance sales by rounding out your pharmacy’s service offerings.

Why skin care matters

Skin care is important to your patients’ health, and it can positively influence your pharmacy’s bottom line.

From a patient health perspective, concern about skin care protection and maintenance is growing. Skin cancer is now the most common cancer in the U.S. according to the American Academy of Dermatology, and 41 percent of U.S. adults report purchasing sunscreen on a regular basis, according to a June 2014 Harris Interactive poll.

For patients with diabetes, skin care is essential. As you know, diabetes shrinks the periphery nerves causing patients with diabetes to improperly sweat, which can result in dry or cracked skin. These wounds can lead to infections and complications, so a daily skin care regimen is an important part of the health care plan for a patient with diabetes.

Making skin care a niche

Connect the care and services your pharmacy provides with your skin care products to make skin care a successful—and relevant—category in your front end.

Here are a few examples of how you can bridge your pharmacy’s services into skin care product recommendations.

The service you offer: Diabetes counseling
The skin care product to recommend: Daily moisturizers
Patients with diabetes have trouble sweating properly after nerve damage in the periphery. When you’re educating these patients about examining their skin daily for wounds, recommend a daily moisturizer from your skin care section to help combat dry skin as a part of their daily regimen.  

The service you offer: Wellness programs
The skin care product to recommend: Sunscreen
During dietary and exercise counseling sessions or programs at your pharmacy, include some information about the importance of selecting the right sunscreen.

For avid long-distance runners, carry and recommend a long-lasting sweat-proof sunscreen that they won’t have to reapply half way through their run. Or, feature a waterproof sunscreen for patients who swim for exercise.

Don’t forget to stock and recommend spray or roll-on sunscreen for patients with children. The easy application methods will help make protecting their skin less of a fight.

The service you offer: Flu shot immunizations
The skin care products to recommend: Hand cleansers, sanitizers and moisturizers
For patients interested in staying healthy during cold and flu season, stock hand sanitizers and cleansers in your skin care section to give them added protection.

Also, recommend these products to patients who just got their flu shot, who are high-risk for the flu, or who are especially concerned with getting sick because of their exposure to germs at their work, such as health care professionals or teachers.

Also, stock moisturizers in your skin care section and remind patients that while frequent hand washing can help keep them healthy during cold and flu season, it can also dry out their skin. Recommend a good moisturizer or lotion to prevent cracked, dry skin during the winter.

The service you offer: Smoking cessation
The skin care product to recommend: Age-defying, restorative creams
When patients quit smoking with your pharmacy’s smoking cessation program, help them undo some of the damage that smoking has done to their skin by carrying and recommending age-defying and restorative creams in your skin care section.

Tying these products to your smoking cessation program will give patients an added benefit when they quit smoking.

The service you offer: Post-operative prescriptions
The skin care product to recommend: Wound or scar care
When patients fill painkillers or other post-operative prescriptions, consult with them and their doctor about post-operative wound or scar care.

Help patients find the right product to transition from the dressings into bandages, and advise them about how to prevent infections, and how to minimize scarring.

Helping patients find the right product for their wound will not only provide your pharmacy with additional sales, but also help patients heal their skin when it’s most vulnerable.

The service you offer: Pregnancy consultations
The skin care product to recommend: Skin care products for baby
If your pharmacy provides new-parents services, or medication consultations for pregnant mothers, be sure to include baby products in your skin care section.

Recommend products to protect, wash and care for the skin of newborns, toddlers and children. These products will boost your sales and parents will appreciate that you provide them with skin care protection for their whole family.

You can also offer products for mom, too. Creams that help prevent or reduce stretch marks, or skin butters that help address cracked skin from breast-feeding, can enhance the value of your pharmacy for new moms.

Revitalize your pharmacy’s front end. Learn more about front-end merchandising.

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Elements is written and produced by PBA Health, a buy-side solutions company.

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