Updated: Jan 3
The most affordable & greatest asset of small businesses is the Internet – specifically, having a website. Your website is your first impression for new customers – is it making a good one? Take a moment to review your website and ask yourself the following questions:
Is your contact information easily found?
What about your hours of operation?
Does your website portray your pharmacy in a good light?
Is it designed well, easy to follow & contain good & relevant information?
Are you optimized for mobile phones?
Has it been updated recently to reflect new trends & standards, such as ADA compliance?
If ANY of the answers are ‘no’ or ‘I don’t know’ then it is time to update. If you don’t have a website at all, you should know that 81% of all consumers search online for a company before deciding to do business with them. They are looking at reviews, websites, & social media to find out who you are & if you deserve their business. If they cannot find you online - you don’t exist.
Why does my website need to be custom?
There are some significant benefits to having your own custom website.
First and foremost, websites are meant to be fluid – not a set it and forget it project. Search engines rank websites based on several factors, and one of the main ones is how often the content on the website is updated. If yours has not been updated recently and regularly then that will hurt your overall ranking. At a minimum your website should be updated quarterly.
Does your website ACCURATELY represent your pharmacy? Does it talk about how you impact your community? Does it highlight your team and your products and services or is it all generic content and stock photos? Are you able to feature new things as they come up?
Most independent pharmacies that we work with tout personal service as a differentiator for their pharmacy compared to others, but their website rarely has anything personal on it. If your pharmacy looks like, and reads like, every other pharmacy website then how is your pharmacy different than chain pharmacies? If your website has not been updated since 2016, are we to assume that nothing has changed in your pharmacy since then?
The 2020 pandemic changed everything, especially for small businesses. To help offset lost revenues, many independent pharmacies moved e-commerce to the forefront of their marketing strategy. In addition to giving revenue a boost, online stores have helped:
Drive traffic, which in-turn improves search engine rankings.
Improve patient engagement.
Compete with chains by:
Allowing people to place orders online for same or next day pickup/delivery.
Showcase products at the same or lower costs.
Highlighting all their products & services.
Gain new patients by offering products not available elsewhere but can be found on your online store when searching for that product.
Having a custom website with access to your online store is a great way to bring your pharmacy into the New Year and gives all of your patients – and your community – a place to interact with your pharmacy in a new way they haven’t been able to before.
2020 showed the nation that independent pharmacies are faster and better at adapting to change than most would expect. If you don’t manage your website, how quickly were you able to make changes to your hours or operating procedures during the first few months of lockdown? What would it take, right now, to get a COVID-19 testing or vaccination form put on your website? How much control do you have over the information that is posted on your website?
According to Google, the search for ‘covid-19 vaccine near me’ searches are up 500% from the beginning of January. If your pharmacy is offering vaccine, but doesn’t have anything listed on your website, you won’t be counted within those search results.
Bottom line is – having a custom website gives you the flexibility and control you need to make sure your online presence continues to grow over time. It is a simple way to really distinguish your pharmacy and allows you to ensure consistent branding across all your marketing platforms. For more information on getting a custom website for your pharmacy, call us at 515-280-2914 today.