Patient Survival: Finding Profit in Supplements

Dec 20, 2018 | Independent Pharmacy Insights, Pharmacy Growth

Nutrition and vitamin supplement sales are a big pill to swallow – and a profitable one, say health care market researchers. According to Hamacher Resource Group, supplement market value in the retail sector reached almost $7 billion in the U.S. and is forecast to reach $278 billion by 2024.

That’s why we’ve put together a list of five possible niches your independent pharmacy can implement, and several tips on how to.

Last year, supplements were among the top three independent pharmacy revenue makers. And, nearly 78 percent of U.S. consumers reported recently that they believe dietary supplements complement healthier lifestyles.
So, how can your independent pharmacy leverage this rocketing trend? We’ll share four tips to help boost your bottom line and keep your health-focused patients coming through your door.

1. Promote to the right patients

Patients who are most interested in supplements are unlikely to be treating an acute condition. They’re likely focused on longer-term health benefits or are looking at a longer-term need such as prenatal support, immunity support or sleep challenges.
Consumers who are more likely to purchase supplements include:

  • Females and pregnant females
  • Males (particularly for energy supplements)
  • Health conscious consumers
  • Consumers on special diets
  • Diabetics
  • Patients using prescriptions that leech nutrients

2. Promote supplements starting January 1

Resolutions for better health, diet, exercise habits start on January 1. So, why not be ready to help your patients meet their resolutions by having the right supplements on hand? Promote your supplements through advertisements, coupons, blogs, social media, and end caps.

Just remember, adherence to New Year’s resolutions tends to slow down after a couple of months, so plan your inventory accordingly and watch your sales trends to plan for next year.

3. Keep your prices competitive

Surveys suggest that price is the top key influencer for your patients when purchasing supplements. Just like any of your OTC products, you only have so much room to move on pricing. This is where it’s important to watch your competitors’ prices. Can you go lower with discounts or match them? If you can’t beat the competition’s price, consider price matching plus add a little extra personal service to capture your patient’s attention and loyalty.

4. Keep supplements next to the checkout and on end caps

Surveys suggest that over 80 percent of consumers claim to buy supplements as part of a larger purchase. What that tells us is consumers don’t often head to the pharmacy just to buy supplements. Make sure that supplements are easy and convenient for consumers to spy and buy.

  • Promote supplements in your store – use strategic signage
  • Display supplements near the checkout counter
  • Place supplements on end caps
  • Offer supplement discounts if purchased with a full-priced product

Closing Thoughts

Supplements are a hot trend, but if market predictions persist, they’re a trend that’s continuing to skyrocket. But like most trend markets, supplements have their peaks and valleys. So it’s important to take a strategic approach to marketing supplements to maximize on benefits for your pharmacy’s bottom line and your patients’ health and wellness.

How does your pharmacy market its supplements in 2019? Have you tried any of these strategies? Have you found a strategy or tip that works better than another? We’d love to know and may even share those experiences in future blog posts, white papers, and e-books. If you’d like to add your experience, please contact Jessica Gardner.

And, of course, if you haven’t yet, be sure to subscribe (it takes only seconds) to our blog for more tips, insights, and bulletins that can help grow your pharmacy and save you money – all from your partners at AlliantRx.