Before you look at issues within your business such as pricing, purchases, wages etc, you need to think about and understand the market you are targeting, and therefore the service offerings to your customers.
I broadly categorise the pharmacy market into two main groups, the first being community pharmacies and the second being pharmacy discounters.
So what distinguishes these two groups, and how does it affect their service offerings to customers?
Community pharmacies generally focus on offering extensive advice along with the medication/product their customer is purchasing.
The majority of the pharmacy sales come from their dispensary (on average around 80-85%), and with that comes personal advice from the pharmacist in regards to the particular medication being dispensed.
Front of shop sales make the remaining total sales, which may or may not require the same amount of advice given by the pharmacist.
Due to this sales mix, ie. majority of sales from the dispensary, generally the shop size is not required to be too big.
Further it is more likely that a community pharmacy will offer their customers additional professional services such as Home Medication Reviews (HMRs), Dose Administration Aids (DAA), flu vaccine shots and personal counselling.
Generally these pharmacies focus more on sale of product, and as such their front of shop sales are greater than their dispensary sales.
There will be much more product for sale in these pharmacies, and generally I see these pharmacies as being a ‘quick in and out pharmacy’ where sale of product requires little or no pharmaceutical advice.
Due to the greater volume of product for sale, these pharmacies will generally be larger in size.
While these pharmacy discounters will offer some additional professional services, it is also likely the pharmacy will offer a less extensive range of professional services than a community pharmacy will offer.
So even before you look at the many practical issues within your pharmacy such as product offerings, service offerings, stock levels, staffing requirements, and size of premises etc, you first need to take a step back and understand the pharmacy market you are targeting, and further decisions should flow on from there.
If you are looking at ways to boost the performance of your pharmacy BLG Business Advisers can help. We have a number of long-term pharmacy clients we have helped and we can give you the advice you need to make the right decision. Take this opportunity to get in touch with us online or by calling (02) 4221 2299.