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Harness Technology for Customer Service

Customer service has moved beyond in-person interactions. Here’s what technology can offer

For many years good customer service meant having someone who could help customers in the store and someone to man the telephone to answer any phone calls. However, the proliferation of technology from the rise of social media to all that a smartphone has to offer has changed how customer service is done.

Once a rare occurrence, online shopping has become increasingly common. According to Statista over 263 million American consumers make their purchases online1 and 56.6% of surveyed consumers said that they prefer to shop online. A 2018 report found 87% of customers begin any purchase online and 71% of them use their mobile device in store when making a purchase.2

To take advantage of what technology offers, pharmacists should consider:

Having a good website – The days of creating a website one piece of HTML code at a time are long gone. Services like Squarespace and Wix make it easier than ever to have a clean, professional-looking website. Websites should not only have contact information and make it easy to get prescription refills, but make it easy for customers to search front-end stock and determine if something would be available for in-store pickup.

Harnessing social media – Social media cannot only help define a pharmacy’s brand, but it also provides an avenue for customers to reach out with questions and concerns. It can be considered a partial replacement for the phone calls of the past.

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Using the power of Google – The search engine has become the go-to spot for any search. Google offers some services to help businesses be more visible like business profiles and email addresses for the business. Google analytics can provide insight on how many people are visiting the pharmacy’s site, where they’re coming from, and what parts of the site are the most popular. The search engine’s algorithm does change, which makes keeping on top search engine optimization trends an important way to get the most out of a pharmacy’s site.

Consider developing an app – An app may not be a necessity, but it can be a great tool for a pharmacy. It offers all of the benefits of the website and Google, but it’s exclusive to one business, which means that customers are choosing to specifically look at what that business has to offer.

The personal touch is the bedrock of independent pharmacy. Technology offers a way to extend that touch and reach customers where they are now.

References

  1. eCommerce. Reports. Statista. Accessed August 8, 2022. https://www.statista.com/outlook/dmo/ecommerce/united-states
  2. Alaimo D. 87% of shoppers now begin product searches online. News article. Retail Dive. Published August 15, 2018. Accessed August 8, 2022. https://www.retaildive.com/news/87-of-shoppers-now-begin-product-searches-online/530139/


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