Online medicine business has become especially profitable in the pandemic times. At NEKLO, we’ve studied successful cases and concluded that the key to sustainable returns and rewards on this market is the company’s opting for custom pharmacy app development.
Launching an online pharmacy service that drives revenue requires both meeting strict demands of law reinforcements as well as providing a satisfactory user experience.
In this article, we’ve discovered how do online pharmacies work, overviewed the core features, peculiarities, as well as pros and cons of the medicine delivery app development, and made up a plan of how to make your own pharmacy online.
Introduction: Why Drugstores Need Pharmacy App Development?
In 2021, global spending on medicine continues to grow. According to Statista, the spending will increase to 1,590 billion US Dollars by 2024. The tendency also shows that the demand for ordering pharmaceutical supplies online and home delivery is growing as never before, making online drugstores and pharmacy apps a preferred way for customers to get their prescriptions.
On this wave of moving online, currently operating online pharmacies got a unique chance to completely transform their customer experience. Along with an online medicine delivery app, companies offer solutions that can cover lots of other health-related needs, such as:
- Solutions offering an online chat with a pharmacist;
- Solutions that can find and show you a medicine which is equivalent to the prescribed one;
- Solutions that remind you of the day and time to take medications, as well as about running out of medications;
- Solutions that send notifications when you buy drugs that are incompatible and don’t go together.
IT services companies that implement the above (or other) functionality in their provided epharmacy services are easily entering the big competition for the market leader title. We believe this is because most pharmacy delivery apps have similar basic functionality allowing users to select medicines, put them in the basket and order the delivery or pickup at a nearby drugstore.
Below we’ll discover the rewards that custom-developed websites and mobile apps for pharmacy bring to business owners, as well as what features a medicine delivery app should include.
By the way, if you want to add some tech to your existing brick-and-mortar pharmacy, why not opt for iBeacon? Discover how we use them in this article.
The Rewards of Having a Pharmacy Mobile App & Website
Our team has managed to get an expert quote from a healthcare practitioner Kimberly Rozen. She shared her insight on the state of the ePharmacy market today and why it is worth starting selling medicine online.
Here’s what she thinks:
“From my standpoint as a pharmacist delivering continuous healthcare amidst the pandemic, with the closure of OPDs in the private and public hospitals, there has been great unrest among the patients with other diseases. With nowhere to go and to exercise and save themselves from the virus exposure at the hospitals, opens the door for medicine delivery provisioning in this time of crisis.
There is a growing demand for pharmacy ecommerce. Online pharmacies offer better pricing than offline stores, with increased access, lower transaction and product costs, convenience, and greater anonymity for consumers. They offer accessibility to people with limited mobility and people in remote areas.
The ePharmacy concept offers a next-day medicine delivery service with no required minimum order, making it an efficient choice among other online drugstores. Orders can be placed on the company or drugstore website by searching for your needed medicines, uploading your prescription, or sending a message.”
– Kimberly Rozen, a Clinical Pharmacist (RPh) at a government hospital in the Philippines, currently managing the Ant & Garden Pest Control company.
As a custom web application development company, we can definitely say that a pharmaceutical web site or a pharmacist app are a working tool for attracting customers, increasing online orders, and collecting feedback.
Here are some of the most valuable benefits custom app development brings to the pharmacist business:
1. No capital costs
With an on-demand medicine delivery app, there is no need to rent and equip premises, hire staff for a new drugstore, deal with monthly salaries and taxes. You will only have to pay for the application development services.
2. Minimal risks and short launch time
Even if you are new to ecommerce, we can assure you that you can start your own pharmacy online quickly and with minimal risks. If you like the format and want to have flexibility, it’s worth a try. Your operating brick-and-mortar drugstore may serve as a storage space, while the main services are provided through a pharmacy web site or a mobile app.
3. Healthy and consistent sales
Your private online pharmacy is open 24/7. The assortment is not limited to a shop window and premises. Moreover, the medicine catalog is updated instantly, notifications about new products come to customers in time, and chances of return-customer base growth are higher because you can always offer a personalized discount.
Once, we have already covered the benefits of on-demand apps for the healthcare industry in our Blog. So, take a look.
Pharmacy App Development: How Online Pharmacy Service Works?
If we have managed to convince you to opt for the services of a software vendor to start your pharmacy online, we’d suggest you turn to a custom software development company rather than individual developers. Why? NEKLO specialists explain in this article.
One of the first things your trusted technology company will create will be an interactive prototype and customer-friendly pharmacy website design. It will show you how the users will see the application and how they will interact with it.
By choosing the most appropriate implementation option for each function, it’s also necessary to enable the user to customize the app. For example, the user may choose to display products in the catalog by tiles or in a list, filter products by price, by popularity, by name. A flexible interface allows the application to be handy and personalized for each customer.
How does the medicine ordering process look like? The basic algorithm of the ordering and delivery process of a pharmacy delivery app includes the following:
- Search. The users find the necessary medicine or its equivalent.
- Verification. The users are able to upload the prescription if required.
- Cart preparation. The users add medicine to the cart.
- Order placement. The users check the order and select the shipping option.
- Payment. The users select the preferable payment method.
If you are thinking about starting your own online pharmacy, you will need to select an ecommerce platform. In this article, we discover why Magento can be a good choice.
Core Features of a Medicine Delivery App & Online Pharmacy Website
Then, there’s also a place for defining the features of the future solution. You can choose to implement a digital discount card, to facilitate the shopping process, and a lot more.
What are the core features of an on-demand app for pharmacies? We’ve analyzed the needs of drugstores’ customers and the features provided by the best pharmacy websites, and built several scenarios for the interaction between the user and a mobile application.
As a result, we’ve identified 6 core pharmacy app features.
1. Product catalog with all the listings
Online product catalogs are usually extended. The feature allows customers to select among all available items, book and pick up medicines in the pharmacy or get them delivered.
Additionally, product catalog enables customers to:
- Independently study the assortment;
- Compare prices;
- Monitor the arrival of medicine that is out of stock;
- Add medicine to the favourites;
- Track orders;
- Make payments through various payment options.
2. Virtual discount card for regular customers
A virtual discount card functions as a digital analogue of a plastic loyalty card in a mobile application, which is always at hand. A discount can be obtained both online and at an offline drugstore by showing a smartphone screen at the checkout with the discount number.
3. QR or barcode scanning for information
Best pharmacy apps provide their users with a quick availability check and a price check of a product as it is time-saving. Customers don’t need to enter the product name manually but simply scan the product’s QR or barcode with the phone camera. The application will recognize it and provide relevant information.
4. Online-tailored special deals and discounts
Through a website and a custom-developed app, customers can learn about current promotional offers and plan purchases taking into account the discounts.
5. Instant feedback that stays on your page
Through product reviews, customers share opinions on medicine. They can also turn to a drugstore for help with choosing medicine for example in a couple of taps and get a prompt response. The feature enables your customers with an opportunity to report the level of service, the quality of items, and ask a question regarding the operation of the mobile app.
6. Map to guide customers to offline store
A map of brick-and-mortar drugstores with automatic location detection for quick route planning around the city facilitates offline visits.
By the way, if you are interested in launching an app in the food delivery industry, we have an article covering this topic too. Read it in our blog by the link Food Ordering App Development: Types & Features.
The development of a pharmacy app or a custom pharmacy website is a long-term investment. However, don’t be afraid of the online pharmacy start up costs as it’s all about establishing a new channel for attracting a fast-growing mobile audience and for increasing the loyalty of your existing customer base.
If you are thinking about how to start a pharmacy delivery service, we are ready to help you through our mobile and web app development services. From the primary consultation to building up your customized software to delivering expert support, at NEKLO we will work to deliver a solution for your business needs.
Let’s find the way to deliver your products and services to customers easily and fast.