October 8, 2012
When you type your pharmacy’s name into a search engine, does your pharmacy even show up? More than 266.2 million people in North America are online and an estimated 97 percent of consumers use the web to seek out more information about products and services. Are they missing out on finding your business?
A pharmacy that doesn’t have a functioning and well-maintained website can lose a crucial portion of the marketplace. A website gives customers a “sneak-preview” into your pharmacy.
Not everyone knows about your pharmacy, even if you’ve been in business for more than 50 years. The new family in town will want to know if you’re the right pharmacy for their needs—and they’ll likely look up your website first.
When designing a website, pharmacists should think about creating multiples pages or sections for their website. The most important parts of your site should be clearly linked and always included on your homepage. Have an “About Our Pharmacy” or “Meet Our Pharmacists” page that links to or brings up a clear description of who you are and what your pharmacy does. Also, the contact information on your website should lead to your address, telephone numbers, fax number, email address and links to any social media pages (Facebook or Twitter) you may be operating as well.
Frequently Asked Questions or FAQs are important additions to a website as well. Devoting space to answering those often simple questions such as, “What are your pick-up hours?” or “Do you offer any customer savings programs?” is an ideal way to save both your time and your patients’ time. Another time-saver is an online refill option for your patients.
Your website is a wonderful way to announce in-store or community events. You can tell customers about current specials or deals you’re offering, too. Think of your website as an opportunity to reach out to your customers, both new and established.
It is also important to remember websites do require some responsibility. They must be maintained. Regular updates are important and you can use customers’ responses to your website to gauge necessary changes.
Think of your website as a chance to bring your brand online. Are you the friendly, hometown pharmacy, or maybe the progressive pharmacy that specializes in compounding or HRT programs? A bit of both? How do you want potential patients to see you? Once you’ve chosen how you would like your pharmacy’s brand identity represented online, stick with it.
Your website is also an opportunity to showcase what makes your pharmacy unique. What services do you offer that your competitors do not? Do you employ specialized staff members, such as a nutritionist? Maybe you host a visiting nurse practitioner who presents monthly health education sessions? Do you boast the only drive-thru window in town or do you have early hours three days a week? Tell customers about these exclusive services online.