Your Pharmacy Online

If you want to be noticed in today’s world, online is where you need to be. This is where your pharmacy’s future customers reside, and it’s where they’re waiting to find you.

People today don’t always want to run to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription. With the recent pandemic, along with customer demands, healthcare services have gone virtual and ordering prescriptions online has become crucial. Consumers have become comfortable with the instant gratification offered by the web, so it’s vital that your pharmacy keeps up with social technology.

If you’d like to draw in new customers to your pharmacy in the new year, here are the essentials your pharmacy needs:


Having a pharmacy website is the first step to building your digital storefront. It’ll be your own personal canvas where you can publish all the information about your products and services. If you’d like an easy-peasy way to set up your own website, check out free builder tools like Wix, Weebly, and Mailchimp. They provide templates that are simple to use for basic websites.

But first, check out your competitions’ websites. What makes them stand out? What are their unique selling points? If you already have a website, look to see if there’s anything you’d like to improve. Is it personable enough? All of this is important because your website reflects your pharmacy. It should tell visitors what sets you apart from others.

Add a personal photo of yourself, your employees, and add some photos of your physical pharmacy store inside and out. When you bring out the emotional connection between you and your website users, they genuinely feel it and find your pharmacy more relatable.

Once your website is designed, look at it through the eyes of a patient. Be sure it’s user friendly and includes the following:

  • Easy to navigate
  • Design that matches up with your brand
  • Easy to read and understand
  • Main points are highlighted
  • All pages have the same text size, font, and color scheme

If your pharmacy already has a website, when was the last time it was updated? If the design or the information currently posted dates back more than a year, it’s time to make some changes. An outdated website will send viewers to your competitors’ sites instead.

Drive more patients to your site by including such things as a health blog, refill and transfer page, online shop, and a contact page. Keep these pages updated regularly, and your website will be hopping with regular patient visits.

Social Media

If you don’t have a business account on a social media platform, now’s the time. The first step is to determine which platform your customers are most likely to spend time on. Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are your best bets for most consumer-facing businesses.

Once you choose your platform, check out other pharmacy pages and what they post. What types of posts get the most “likes” or comments? How many followers do they have? This is key information for what to post on your own pharmacy page.

As you create your business account, don’t forget to include important information like where your pharmacy is located, hours of operation, services offered, your contact information, and links to your website.

Once you have created your social media page, you’re ready to make your first post. You might want to start by introducing your pharmacy team. Be sure to include a photo of the entire crew! Photos are an important part of successful social media posts. You can also start posts on how to book an appointment in your pharmacy, pharmacy updates, and any promotions or offers you have right now.

Social media isn’t just about posting. As a business owner, it also means engaging with your followers. You do this by responding to comments and replying to messages. If you block out 15 minutes a day to hop onto your social pages and respond to or like comments, your followers will know you care.

Your social media pages can be a relatable way to promote wellness while influencing patient behaviors. You’ll also collect irreplaceable engagement and feedback.

Google My Business

This is an important social media marketing tool. It’s not only free, but it’s easy to use and it helps customers find your location. Be sure to include all of your important information such as your pharmacy hours, street address, phone number, email address, and website address.


Your customers have a lot of questions, and while you have the answers, you don’t always have the time. Your technicians are busy juggling multiple tasks, such as filling medications and helping patients.

Customers are anxious. Some want to know the side effects of their medications. Others inquire whether their two medications taken together might cause bad side effects. The longer it takes you to answer their questions, the more their anxiety builds. That’s why chatbots are your saving grace.

Chatbots offer confidentiality and support, even for the most awkward questions. They allow your customers the ability to upload images to the bot. If their medication request shows it’s not available over the counter, they can upload a photo or screenshot of their prescription to be verified by the chatbot or by your staff.

Did you know that a chatbot has a broadcast feature that you can use to schedule reminders for your customers to refill or take their medications. A chatbot also has a great memory. It remembers everything and even saves every interaction it has with your customers on the interface. This means your employees can access each interaction with your customers.

Keep in mind that medical chatbots aren’t set up to deal with every single request. In fact, they can’t verify prescriptions, nor can they handle every single question asked. They can, however, seamlessly transition from automated responses to live responses from a virtual agent. Plus, the agent can view the entire conversational history on the platform, so the customers don’t have to repeat their questions.

Your pharmacy has a lot to gain using a chatbot. It’ll answer almost any question and offers round-the-clock support seven days a week (including live assistance and multimedia). With this amazing technology, your customers’ journey becomes so much easier.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing today’s practice of pharmacy and health care. For example, the ways in which pharmacists deliver care today is more than just filling prescriptions. Pharmacies are changing patient outcomes by improving medication management and simplifying workflow. Here’s how:

  • Medication Management

One of the key areas in which AI can make an impression is with medication management. Decision support systems driven by AI help pharmacists select the right drug, choose the right dosage, and identify possible drug interactions and adverse events. This improves clinical judgment and reduces medication errors.

AI algorithms analyze large data sets and correctly identify possible drug candidates. By doing this, the algorithms are changing the drug discovery process. And with new drugs being developed at a fast pace, there’s the possibility of new treatments for various illnesses emerging.

AI can also influence personalized treatment through care plans based on a patient’s genetic makeup, lifestyle and medical history. This lessens the possibility of adverse events.

  • Workflow and Performance

AI simplifies many processes such as pharmacy workflow. It also frees pharmacists from a variety of tasks so they can focus on patient care. This is all due to a method of AI known as robotic dispensing.

Today, many large pharmaceutical companies are adopting AI-automated dispensing systems. The systems are equipped with AI technology, which accurately packages and labels medications. This improves efficiency and reduces dispensing errors.

Inventory management is another procedure AI can help pharmacies with. The AI-powered algorithms can predict the demand for a drug and boost inventory management, all while managing enough stock levels and lowering waste.

As a pharmacist, you have concerns when it comes to medication errors and patient safety. The good news is AI technology can help detect and prevent errors such as incorrect dosages or possible drug interactions. This will minimize unfortunate events and readmissions to hospitals.

AI has a lot of potential. However, the implementation of it in pharmacies faces some challenges. The initial expense required for AI integration may be seen as challenging by some pharmacies with limited finances and resources.

To get pharmacists on track with AI-driven operations, education and training may be necessary to build their trust. Cooperation between pharmacists, AI developers, and healthcare providers will be what eventually drives change and refines AI tools to meet the distinct needs of pharmacies.

Technology is always changing. So, be sure to stay on top of what’s new and “all the rage” in pharmacy. Don’t balk when it comes to trying something new. Embrace it, and watch your business and patient base grow.

From the Magazine

This article was published in our quarterly print magazine, which covers relevant topics in greater depth featuring leading experts in the industry. Subscribe to receive the quarterly print issue in your mailbox. All registered independent pharmacies in the U.S. are eligible to receive a free subscription.

More articles from the December 2023 issue:

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