In recent times, several businesses have leveraged the power of digital transformation to scale up and bring substantial positive impacts to their audience. The global pharmacy industry has been among those at the forefront of this revolution.

Online pharmacy business was already on the up before COVID-19 with the pandemic helping fuel further growth. According to the latest market reports, the global online pharmacy market will reach $38.2 billion by 2030.

If you are looking to make the most of the changing times and give your friendly neighborhood pharmacy business the much-needed makeover with on-demand pharmacy delivery services, read on to know more about what’s trending in the industry and how you can set yourself apart from the competition by employing an on-demand pharmacy app development company to help sort out the technical side of things.

What’s Trending in Online Pharmacy Delivery?

With the increasing adoption of technology among the global population and changing consumer behavior towards paying a premium for convenience, the online pharmacy industry has gained immense popularity in recent years. As a result, certain well-defined industry trends have emerged.

Growth in annual spends on medicines 

Annual spending on medicines has been on an upward trajectory since 2010 with people buying medicines on their smartphones from the comfort of their homes. According to a Statista finding in 2023, global expenditure on medicines was around $1.5 trillion in 2022 compared to only around $887 billion in 2010 – it is expected to jump to $1.9 trillion by 2027.

Online pharmacies have witnessed a growth in medicine order medicine fulfillment volumes in tune with the rise in medical spending and there are several factors at play here. Better accessibility to technology and the convenience of having medicines delivered to the doorstep have boosted overall consumer spending, prompting more businesses to enter the on-demand pharmacy delivery services and address the unmet demands. 

Several of them also offer heavy discounts which has been an important factor in luring customers away from the physical retail outlets. No matter which business you are in, everyone loves a good discount.

Increased patient engagement

As more people consult self-help platforms to access medicines and medical services, this has resulted in increased patient engagement. Not only can you search online for a doctor but also see what others have to say about them. Increasing digitization in the pharmacy business now allows patients to overcome past barriers to accessing local medical services alongside providing a gateway to global service providers.

Changing consumer behavior among the elderly

According to a Pew Research Centre survey from January 2022, 83% of adults in the USA aged 50-64 and 61% of those aged 65 and above-owned smartphones – a remarkable improvement from 34% and 13% respectively reported a decade ago. As the global elderly population becomes increasingly tech-savvy, it has also triggered a shift in consumer behavior. Today, more senior citizens are shopping online to meet their daily medicine requirements rather than relying on someone to pick it up for them from the local pharmacy.

Challenges for the Online Pharmacy Delivery Industry

The online pharmacy industry faces its fair share of challenges that it must deal with. Here is a look at what is ailing the industry at the moment.

The presence of unlicensed pharmacies

With online pharmacies experiencing unprecedented popularity growth, certain unlicensed pharmacies have jumped on to the bandwagon looking to make some quick profits. However, they have ended up earning a bad name for on-demand pharmacy delivery services and created mistrust between the patients and genuine service providers. Multiple negative experiences have made patients wary of online purchases for their regular medication needs as they can no longer trust the authenticity of the delivered goods.

Expired medicine delivery

There have been instances of patients complaining about the delivery of expired medicines. An expired medicine is not safe for consumption – when such a product is delivered, it is not only a potential health hazard but also leaves the patients without their required medicines. There are also considerable impacts on the supply chain as the pharmacy must now decide how to deal with the expired medicines. Moreover, it takes time to provide a replacement medicine and the service provider may not be able to deliver within the stipulated timeframe, resulting in backlogs, unwanted chaos, and frustration for all involved.

Lack of standardized industry practices

Currently, the online pharmacy industry does not have any clear industry standards which is reason enough for many people to stay away from it. As a result, it is not able to meet its growth potential.

How You Can Benefit From Pharmacy App Development

Those who are new to the online medicine delivery business can benefit from medicine delivery app development in the following ways:

Automated order dispatch and optimized delivery route:

A medicine delivery app will help you optimize the delivery route and save significantly on fuel expenses. You can also do away with manual route planning which can be time-consuming. Simply enter the destinations and the app will provide the most efficient delivery route.

Predictive ETAs:

Your customers would like to have an idea of when the order will arrive. With predictive ETA, the app will provide an estimated delivery time while also letting customers track their orders. A dynamic predictive ETA allows dispatchers to notify customers in the event of any changes to delivery estimates while a secure, two-way communication feature lets customers provide important delivery instructions to the drivers.

Maintain delivery records:

The delivery person can use the pharmacy app to record proof of delivery through photographs, digitize customer signatures, or scan medication barcodes. It can also be used to scan customer ID for age-proof validation which can be a regulatory requirement for fulfilling certain orders. This way, you can remotely monitor the delivery status while also having a record of completed deliveries.

Want to Experience These Pharmacy App Development Benefits?

We are here to help! At EMed HealthTech, we are an online pharmacy app development company with a track record of successfully delivering 500+ pharmacy apps, including some of the leading on-demand pharmacy delivery services. We have a team of highly qualified and experienced professionals who have helped meet unique customer requirements across more than 34 countries.

Get in touch with our experts today to know more about how our development team can help with a thoughtful app development solution for your online pharmacy business.