If therefore, the restrictions on mobility caused by the Pandemic and the effects of a global trend in the online market have in all likelihood accelerated growth, operators in the sector are asking themselves the appropriate questions to try and give the sector a new boost.
According to Mediobanca, there is no time to lose: “The online pharmacy market is around 5% of non-prescription sales, a figure that is still a long way from the 10%-15% of the main European countries. Much remains to be planned and realised on the digitalisation front of the services offered by Italian pharmacies. This includes, for example, the booking of services and remote consultations”.
Online pharmacy, consumer needs
The digital consumer, on the other hand, is increasingly demanding: “The management of an online pharmacy store involves several complexities that must be managed to ensure the success of the initiative. For example, online pricing should be done on a dynamic basis and this requires precise knowledge of the demand picture, supply and strategy of one’s competitors, to adapt prices commensurate with the market situation and maximise margins. Furthermore, an online storefront is required to be rich and guarantee timely delivery, given that the consumer’s natural benchmark is now the Amazon standard.
I will not dwell here on pricing techniques, which we have already covered extensively in this blog, while a reflection, taken from the same report, is important, leading us to focus on the subject of forecasting.
Online pharmacy, the importance of forecasting
As far as the assortment is concerned, in fact: “an important strategic lever is the ability to offer a complete and deep range of references to cover the customer’s health and wellness needs, enhancing the categories in which the individual pharmacy has its specialisation”.
For this reason, underlines Mediobanca: “rationalisation, coordination and possible integration of the supply chain are therefore important objectives that can be met through closer relations with intermediate distribution, to focus the assortment on the products with the greatest vocation, while reducing the number of daily deliveries and related costs”: issues on which Artificial Intelligence with refined predictive analysis techniques can guarantee a real breakthrough.