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Build Online Pharmacy App with Pharmacy eCommerce Features for 2X More Revenue

Quick Summary: The idea of taking your pharmacy business to e-commerce is not new. But during the pandemic, it emerged as the extremely popular way to purchase medicines due to the Covid-19 restrictions. Consumers seem to be turning to the internet pharmacy market due to its convenience, low cost, and other benefits.

Now in the post-pandemic world, online pharmacies are not just the convenient way of taking prescriptions and delivering medications at patients’ doorsteps. In the age of digital health care, the role of pharmacy and pharmacists is evolving, making it vital to take your pharmacy business online.

However, if you still have doubts on why to take your pharmacy online or start an online pharmacy? Continue reading to find your answer.

Why start an online pharmacy in the USA?

Today, consumers are prioritizing their health and wellness like never before. According to the study conducted, the global online pharmacy market is expected to reach USD 202.3 billion by 2027 with a CAGR of 16.8%, during the forecast period from 2021-2027.

Further, the “U.S. Online Pharmacy Market- Industry outlook and forecast 2021-2026” report shows a rise in Direct-To-Patient drug sales, increased demand for advanced ecommerce technologies, and high adoption of eprescription among US customers.

To stay up in the pharmacy business, owners must understand the need of going online with the eCommerce platform.

Consumer demands and expectations:

In the year 2020, the medication segment in the US accounted for approximately 76% of the US online pharmacy market share. The reason was the increasing demand for patient medications, rising consumer preference for online pharmacy platforms due to convenience, reduced cost, and time efficiency.

However, consumer expectations are more, they expect a higher level of service, personalization, the flexibility of choice, and innovation.

Competitive landscape:

During the pandemic, pharmacies stores witnessed low traffic due to the stay-at-home restrictions and the Covid-19 related job losses had affected millions to lose their health insurance. At the same time, an eCommerce gainst entered into the online pharmacy market (Amazon launched its online pharmacy for medication), and some big medicine warehouses announced same-day medication delivery.

With all these challenges, small and medium-sized business owners found it difficult to compete in the market. The only way to survive is to offer better online services to local customers.

Regulatory efforts to create friendly policies and laws for digital health:

Regulation that enforces lower medication prices has created a threat for offline pharmacy businesses. Besides that, earlier it seemed to be restrictive to go for the online pharmacy.

However, the situation is changing slowly as telehealth is permitted in half of US states and the government has recognized the need to add new policies for regulating online pharmacies.

Technological advancement:

Pharmacies can benefit by investing in advanced technologies. Integration of the online pharmacy with the technologies such as AI, RPA, data analytics, and IoT can help pharmacists a lot by reducing the manual work related to inventory management and supply chain, supporting patients 24/7 through bots, analyzing the patient’s demand, and much more.

New technologies not only keep the pharmacy business on track but also provide pharmacists or business owners a clear and deeper view on how to make the processes more efficient by generating meaningful insights.

Benefits of developing an online pharmacy application in the USA

Investing in the online pharmacy can drive your pharmacy business towards excellence and provide the following benefits for consumers and business owners.

Benefits for consumers (patients):

  • Saves time and efforts
  • Provides competitive prices
  • Contactless delivery of medication 24/7
  • Secure patient information and prioritize patient privacy

Benefits for owners:

  • Increases customer reach
  • Improves inventory and supply chain management
  • Helps in brand establishment
  • Helps in building up a loyal customer base
  • Improves productivity

Online pharmacy app development: Types and key features

1) Basic types of online pharmacy app:

Before developing an online pharmacy application, find out which type of app you want to build as there are mainly three types of pharmacy apps based on the business model.

  • Individual app for single pharmacy store or brand
  • Aggregator app for multiple pharmacies
  • Direct manufacturer to consumer app

2) Key features of online pharmacy app for aggregator business model:

Here we will see how to build a medication delivery app for aggregators’ business models using the following app modules.

  • Customer app for patients
  • Aggregator app for pharmacy stores
  • Admin panel app to manage app backend
  • Medication delivery app for the delivery person

Customer app features:

  • User account
  • Account configuration settings and privacy
  • Advanced and basic search medicine functionality with filtering option
  • Locate the nearest store
  • Upload prescription
  • Place order
  • Add to Cart
  • Secure payment gateway
  • Add coupon and discounts
  • Claim for the drugs that are covered under health insurance
  • Track your order
  • Drug information (composition, manufacturing, and expiry date, side effects )
  • Refill medication, Refill reminder
  • Notification and Feedback
  • Rewards, discount coupons, and gift
  • Pill reminder
  • Order history
  • Medication management for individual and family
  • Connect with pharmacist
  • Contact store
  • Access to useful information, articles, news, and other content
  • Place return or replacement request

Aggregators/Pharmacist web panel features:

  • Pharmacy registration
  • Account configuration
  • Search and find drug details
  • Notification and alert
  • Prescription checker
  • Order management
  • Inventory management
  • Invoice generator
  • Sales and billing
  • Customer support
  • Shipment and delivery management
  • Connect with Admin
  • Analyze sales and generate financial report
  • Reward program management
  • Discount coupons and gift card management
  • Insurance claim management

Admin panel features:

  • Admin profile and registration
  • Configuration setting and Privacy
  • User role management
  • Aggregator management
  • Customer management
  • supplier, Shipment, Inventory, and delivery management
  • Marketing and sales team management
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Compliance management
  • Connect with store/aggregators

Medication delivery app for the delivery person features:

  • Admin profile and registration
  • Configuration setting and Privacy
  • Notification and alert
  • GPS route guide
  • Performance history
  • Calls and messaging
  • Medication Delivery manager
  • Feedback and ratings

Top online pharmacy apps in the USA

1. CVS Pharmacy (4.7 stars with 569K rating):

CVS is the largest pharmacy chain in the USA. Currently serving more than 5 million customers in the USA. The company is owned by CVS Health (Consumer Value Store Health).

CVC Pharmacy App

Features:

  • User-friendly interface
  • Search medication
  • Shop using prescription with a single scan
  • Discount, deals, and rewards
  • Refill prescription
  • Check drug interaction
  • Healthcare provider services(search and call doctors and physicians)
  • Video counseling with a healthcare provider
  • Order prints and more from your device and online albums for same-day pickup

2. Capsule Pharmacy (4.9 stars with 5.7K Ratings):

The app offers their customers same-day medication delivery with zero delivery charges.

Capsule Pharmacy App

Features:

  • Manage prescribed medication for individual and family
  • Easy medication refilling
  • Same day medication delivery free of charges
  • Chat or message pharmacist for any query
  • The app coordinates with doctors and medical insurers if required

3. Pill Pack by Amazon Pharmacy:

Pill pack is an Amazon-owned online medication delivery service that provides free medication delivery within two days. It is unique in the sense that it provides personalized medication packaging, simplifying medication management.

Pill Pack by Amazon

Features:

  • Medication order and delivery
  • Medication management for individual and family
  • Delivers refills
  • Works with health insurance plans
  • Access to caregiver
  • 24/7 Support from pharmacies
  • Pay with amazon prime option to save maximum

How can you make more money by adding pharmacy eCommerce features in your online pharmacy app?

To build a holistic model of an online pharmacy app, one must consider all stakeholders including customers, pharmacists, manufacturers, doctors, insurance, and physicians. To better understand this model we can take a previous example of a Pill Pack online pharmacy service by Amazon.

The business model combines insurers, pharmacists, manufacturers, and customers in the one-loop to deliver better care. So if you are contemplating building the best online pharmacy delivery app you can get the idea from the above top pharmacy apps in the USA.

In all three apps, you can see most of its features are taken from the eCommerce service such as on-demand delivery, customer support, add to cart features, add discounts and coupons, and so on.

Taking your pharmacy business online with eCommerce features provides you with faster and better outcomes. Moreover, it gives you full control over your business and empowers you to make better decisions with its analytical features and insights.

And most importantly, you can sell multiple healthcare and wellness products online including perfumes, supplements, oral care items, skincare items, OTC medicines, senior care items etc.

This will allow you to double your revenue streams which ultimately results in double revenue.

The compliance requirement for the online pharmacy app development

Growing drug shortages and poor regulatory compliance are a threat to online pharmacies and the entire healthcare system. According to the recent survey conducted in 2017 by the US National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), found that nearly 96% of websites selling prescription medicines were acting unlawfully.

However, if we see the number of customers that are preferring to buy online medication in the US is rapidly increasing. Even though the demand is high, medicines are not like buying groceries and fashion accessories, patient life is at stake. Therefore, there is a strong reason behind the regulation of online pharmacies.

Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacy has to call USA policymakers to reform drug importation policies. It has also been critical towards the introduction of the regulation of patient data protection. So that criminals can not buy patients’ information from the domain to carry out illegal activities and online scams.

App compliant with HIPAA is more secure as it will keep all your patients’ data highly secure. HIPAA has several technical requirements which your app must address. Basically, HIPAA governs the way you are storing, using and sharing the personal health information of the patients. Meaning, if your app is compliant with HIPAA, your app will automatically become more secure.

How can we help you to build an online pharmacy app with eCommerce features?

In the third wave of digital eCommerce, the role of pharmacies and pharmacists has drastically evolved and still has a great potential to change the economics of pharmacies.

If you are planning to be a part of this transforming ecosystem, it’s time to move forward and make smart decisions for your pharma business. You can build an app according to your requirements and business model and choose between web app, mobile app, cross-platform app, MVP app etc.

We at SyS Creations can help you to make better decisions about your app development. We are a healthcare-focused IT company with expertise in healthcare enterprise consultation, app development, designing, and analytics.

Our team includes healthcare app developers, UI/UX designers, business analysts, QA engineers and healthcare compliance specialists who have solid experience in the healthcare domain.

What makes us unique is our healthcare knowledge, our Canadian quality of work, American quality of innovation, QA process and post-app launch support.