The independent pharmacy landscape is evolving. Pharmacists no longer limit themselves to the primary responsibilities of processing prescriptions and monitoring drug adherence. Instead, they are expanding their scope of pharmacy practice to help meet their patients’ evolving healthcare needs. A growing trend within independent pharmacies is the expansion into high-quality professional brand supplements. Stepping into the world of premium supplements can be risky if you don’t have the right partner. Many questions exist: Will professional brand companies understand your pharmacy business? What products should you stock? Can you convince customers in your area to pay a premium price for a high-quality option? What about staff education? If you have these concerns, continue reading as your solution awaits. Today, we will outline 4 reasons why Pure Encapsulations has become the independent pharmacy’s trusted professional brand partner.
WHAT YOUR PROFESSIONAL BRAND PARTNER DOESN’T KNOW CAN HURT YOU
Let’s get straight to the point. Choosing a professional supplement brand that doesn’t have independent pharmacy expertise can negatively impact your business. Here are some reasons why:
- Lack of knowledge: A brand without pharmacy expertise may not fully understand the needs and challenges of independent pharmacies. This lack of knowledge can lead to product recommendations that are not well-suited for your business needs, leading to lower sales and revenue.
- Limited support: A brand without pharmacy expertise may not provide your pharmacy the same education and support as an experienced brand. This limited support can make it more difficult for you to market and sell the brand’s products effectively.
- Limited industry partnerships: Strategic partnerships provide credibility and help establish a brand’s reputation within the pharmacy industry. Without these partnerships, a professional brand may not be viewed as trustworthy or authoritative in the marketplace.
REASON #1: PURE IS AN INDEPENDENT PHARMACY EXPERT
- Pharmacy Industry Experience: Pure Encapsulations is one of the only professional brands with a dedicated independent pharmacy support program. Our Senior Manager of Pharmacy Education spent nearly 10 years leading a team of sales and marketing reps within an independent pharmacy. His experience has provided valuable insight and knowledge about your challenges and opportunities. This knowledge has helped us develop products and services tailored to your pharmacy’s needs.
- Market research: Pure Encapsulations has a deep understanding of the needs and preferences of pharmacy customers. We stay current on industry trends and customer feedback by leveraging partnerships with Hamacher Resource Group and analysts within our Nestle Health Science team. This has allowed us advantages over our competitors in making product recommendations that you can trust.
- Strategic Pharmacy Partnerships: One key factor that has increased our credibility and expertise has been our strategic partnerships with other industry leaders. For example, we are one of the only professional brands that have secured preferred vendor partnerships with independent pharmacy GPOs. Examples include American Pharmacy Cooperative Incorporated (APCI), Independent Pharmacy Cooperative (IPC) and American Pharmacies (APEX). These types of partnerships are uncommon for professional brands. However, our partners trust the simplicity of our program and its ability to meet their pharmacy members where they are.
Pure Encapsulations pharmacy expertise is an asset to independent pharmacies. By leaning on proven industry experience of staff, detailed market insights and strong industry partnerships, Pure Encapsulations can help independent pharmacies thrive in the competitive healthcare industry.
IT’S NOT BUSINESS AS USUAL FOR INDEPENDENT PHARMACIES
According to the 2022 NCPA Digest, independent pharmacies have an average gross profit margin of 23.3%. Lack of profitability has been an ongoing industry pain. Here are a few of the challenges independent pharmacies are facing:
- Reimbursement rates: Independent pharmacies often rely on third-party payers like insurance companies, to reimburse them for prescription drugs. These reimbursement rates can be low and may not cover the actual cost of the medication, leading to lower profit margins.
- Increased competition: Independent pharmacies face significant competition from large chain pharmacies, supermarkets and online retailers. These competitors often have great resources and economies of scale, making it difficult for independent pharmacies to compete on price and services, affecting profitability.
- Regulatory changes: Changes in healthcare policy and regulation can significantly impact independent pharmacies. For example, the shift towards value-based care and the continued challenges surrounding pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) are requiring pharmacies to rethink their business model to adapt.
REASON #2: PURE ENCAPSULATIONS INCREASES PHARMACY PROFITABILITY
- Higher margins: Our products offer margins over 2X the average gross profit margin of independent pharmacies.* Our premium pricing reflects our commitment to quality and purity and is often perceived as a mark of quality by customers.
- Exclusivity: Because we are not offered in competitor chain pharmacies, independent pharmacies can be a destination for high-quality, supplements backed by verifiable science. This can help build a strong brand identity and increase customer loyalty.
- Repeat business: Many of our supplements are taken continuously, which can lead to repeat business for pharmacies. This can help pharmacies build a loyal customer base that repeatedly returns for their supplement needs.
- Reputation: We have a strong reputation in the healthcare industry and are well-known and respected by healthcare providers and consumers. By offering Pure Encapsulations, pharmacies can position themselves as leaders in the health and wellness space and build a robust and profitable business over time.
CONSUMERS WANT MORE. ARE YOU READY?
We live in a world where wellness and health are on everyone’s minds. A recent study showed that around 50% of US consumers now report wellness as a top priority in their day-to-day lives, up from 42% in 2020 (McKinsey 2022). Thus, consumers have a growing interest in products and services that promote overall health and well-being and are willing to pay a premium for these offerings. Here are some reasons why this trend is on the rise and what it means for independent pharmacies seeking to capitalize on this demand:
- Increased awareness of health issues: With the rise of social media and other digital channels, consumers have more access to health information than ever before. This increased awareness of health issues has led to a greater interest in taking a proactive approach to wellness, as opposed to simply addressing symptoms.
- Focus on holistic health: Consumers are progressively more interested in holistic health, which considers physical and emotional well-being. As a result, there is heightened demand for products and services that address all aspects of wellness.
- Aging population: As the population ages, there is a greater focus on health and wellness. Products and services promoting healthy aging, such as fitness programs and professional brand supplements are in demand.
REASON #3: PURE MEETS THE GROWING DEMAND FOR HEALTHY OPTIONS
- Science-based formulas: Our products are made with high-quality, pure ingredients and backed by verifiable science. We’re also committed to advancing the science of nutrition and sharing our passion and knowledge for the greater good. We take high standards seriously, which is why we’re the #1 most recommended professional supplement brand, ranked highest in quality and trust.1
- Clean ingredients: What makes us different isn’t just our process or what goes into our supplements—what we leave out matters, too. Our premium ingredients are sourced from trusted suppliers, then carefully manufactured and tested to ensure they are FREE FROM unnecessary ingredients like additives, fillers and preservatives.
- Expert partners: We are proud to be grounded in science every step of the way. To help guide us on this journey, we partner with licensed healthcare professionals and recognized experts in genomics, mental health and emotional well-being, weight management, immunology, gastrointestinal health and more.
Independent pharmacies are often more flexible and agile than larger chain pharmacies, which allows them to respond more quickly to changing market demands. As a result, they can adapt their offerings to meet the growing wellness product and service demand. Independent pharmacies are uniquely equipped to meet this ever-increasing demand, and Pure Encapsulations can help.
STOCKING A PROFESSIONAL BRAND CAN BE RISKY WITHOUT THE RIGHT PARTNER
While professional supplement brands offer many benefits to independent pharmacies, some risks can be detrimental if you don’t have the support of a strong brand partner:
- Price sensitivity: Professional brand supplements can be more expensive than regular vitamins, deterring some customers. In addition, customers may hesitate to pay a higher price for vitamins if they aren’t educated on their value-added benefits.
- Inventory management: Professional brands often have a more comprehensive range of products and SKUs, making choosing what to stock more difficult.
- Education: Professional brand success may require additional education for pharmacy staff, as they may not be as familiar with the products or the ingredients.
- Brand recognition: Professional brands may not be as well-known as standard retail vitamin options, making it difficult to build customer trust. This can be incredibly challenging for independent pharmacies, which may not have the same marketing reach as their local competitor chain pharmacies.
REASON #4: PURE LOWERS THE ANXIETY OF STOCKING A PROFESSIONAL BRAND
- Staff education: Pure Encapsulations supports independent pharmacies by providing dedicated sales reps with education and marketing support that builds value into our premium pricing. Additionally, we are proud to share our ever-growing knowledge of nutrition science through educational events and on-demand education to support your staff. Join us throughout the year for live education in partnership with medical experts who share effective clinical strategies for supporting health categories, such as metabolic, immune, women, neurological, cognitive health and more.
- Planogram options: Pure Encapsulations is one of the only professional brands that offer multiple planogram options for pharmacies. Our planograms take the guesswork out of inventory management and are designed to help pharmacies maximize shelf space. They also make it easy for pharmacies to cross-sell Pure products. By grouping related products, pharmacies can encourage customers to purchase complementary products, increasing their overall revenue.
- Industry credibility: Pure Encapsulations has high customer satisfaction, which has helped build a strong reputation as a trusted supplement brand. Customers appreciate the quality of the products and the education and support we provide our healthcare providers. We’ve also received numerous industry awards and accolades for our commitment to quality and science-based formulas, including the #1 most recommended brand by healthcare professionals.2 This recognition has helped increase brand visibility and awareness among healthcare professionals and customers.
Less anxiety means more confidence. Trusting Pure Encapsulations as your professional brand partner streamlines inventory management, increases revenue, enhances your reputation among consumers and creates a competitive advantage in your community.
THE CHOICE IS SIMPLE
Pure Encapsulations’ commitment to quality and purity, research-driven approach, brand recognition and customer satisfaction have made it the most trusted professional supplement brand in the pharmacy industry.
ASK THE PHARMACIST
What do you think sets Pure Encapsulations apart from other brands?
Pure Encapsulations is dedicated to supporting their pharmacy partners and have developed resources specifically to help pharmacies be successful. They are one of the few brands who have created marketing materials, planograms, shelf tags and other documents tailored to pharmacies. Their unwavering commitment to producing high-quality supplements that are verified for potency and purity allows me to have confidence when recommending their products to my patients.
Ben Holter, PharmD, RPh, MBA+
Shrivers Pharmacy and Wellness
*In comparison to average store gross profit of 23.3%, NCPA Digest, 2022.
1. Among brands surveyed, Nutrition Business Journal® 2016, 2020; Kaiser Associates 2014.
2. Among professional supplement brands surveyed, Nutrition Business Journal® 2016, 2020.
+Ben Holter is a retained advisor to Pure Encapsulations.