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Why healthcare ecommerce appeals to today's shoppers

With the rising costs and demand for healthcare, today's consumers are turning to ecommerce for more of their healthcare-related purchases.

In fact, according to the Healthcare Ecommerce Global Market Report 2021, the market is expected to reach more than $643 billion in 2025, an annual growth rate of 17%.1

Online orders provide privacy, convenience, efficiency and discounts for savvy consumers. Plus, shoppers rely on product reviews to help them choose the most suitable healthcare items.

Shopping online is convenient for many aspects of daily life; consumers shop online for clothing, books, even groceries with increased frequency, so why not use the same tool for healthcare needs?

Here's why healthcare ecommerce is becoming more important.

1 | Healthcare ecommerce is convenient

In the hustle and bustle of daily life, healthcare can end up on the back burner for those short on time. With online shopping options for healthcare needs, your customers can shop at the most convenient time for them, 24/7.

Shopping online means not traveling to several stores to find what's needed. Instead, your customers can find everything on their computers.

After their online shopping spree, they don't need to lug a giant box of medical supplies from the store to their car or home because supplies can be delivered right to their doorstep for little-to-no added cost or inconvenience.

2 | Shoppers value privacy

If shoppers need medical supplies but wish to keep their conditions and illnesses private, purchasing supplies online may become their preferred option.

Instead of going into a store to purchase supplies in public, these items can be delivered in discreet packaging.

Shoppers can also look at different product options without feeling self-conscious or compromising on quality. For example, in 2013, a top-selling erectile dysfunction brand chose to make its product available online in response to counterfeit sites selling fake medication. That year alone, there were 24 million internet searches for this product.2

Is your ecommerce strategy ready to grow with consumer demand? Check out our retail ecommerce solutions to learn how we can help you get the most from your digital catalog, so you can focus on growing your business.

3 | Healthcare ecommerce offers pricing transparency

Shoppers can become overwhelmed when they browse healthcare supplies and services in a retail store, and they may find it difficult to calculate costs on the spot.

On the other hand, online shoppers can compare pricing on their own time and research various discount options. Since retailers must post prices clearly for everyone to study and compare, prices remain competitive while consumers search for the most appealing option.

The infrastructure required to support online shopping is different from brick-and-mortar retail, so you may be able to set lower price points and pass along savings for shoppers. Subscription discounts and bundled pricing are also available through many healthcare online stores and frequent-shopper rewards programs.

4 | Availability of products is key

Supply issues are frustrating for everyone. When your customers need essential healthcare items out of stock on the shelf, or if your store does not carry the product they're looking for, where else can they go? And how much of their basket will leave with them?

Online shopping opens up a world of products while eliminating certain challenges. And for customers living in rural areas, ordering online means having products available when they need them.

5 | Shoppers check (and leave) online reviews

Customers typically check reviews before ordering a new pair of boots online. This can help answer common questions for this type of product, such as sizing, comfort and durability.

The same guiding principle applies to healthcare. One of the biggest advantages of online health commerce is reading reviews of retailers and products from existing customers.

Shoppers feel empowered to purchase products online when they feel informed about the product and experience, and reading reviews helps them do so. Before ordering, savvy shoppers look for shipping speed, ease of communication, timely responsiveness and quality products.

Healthcare ecommerce on the rise

As the world of healthcare ecommerce opens up online, more shoppers trust that internet retailers can meet their medical supply and service needs. With an increase in shoppers comes an increase in reviews, which can prompt those on the fence to become your new customers.


© 2021 McKesson Medical-Surgical Inc.