7 Simple A/B Tests to Improve Your Vitamins and Supplements eCommerce Site

7 Simple A/B Tests to Improve Your Vitamins and Supplements eCommerce Site

No matter how much time and resources you devote to building the most modern, most user-friendly vitamins and supplements eCommerce website, there are always going to be features that can be improved upon. That’s where A/B testing comes in. 

A/B testing comes down to making small adjustments to your website until you find the combination that resonates most with your audience. This means that there are few “ah-ha!” moments; with A/B testing it’s all about baby steps. But be patient, let the testing data inform you, and you will reap serious rewards. 

Whether this is your first attempt at A/B testing or you’re already on a never-ending quest for ways to improve your eCommerce site and increase sales conversions, here are seven simple A/B tests to try for your vitamins and supplements eCommerce site.

Show Your Product Alone or In Context?

Of course, you are going to feature your products with great, high-res images, but what’s the best way to display them? Do users want to see your products posed with a model or in some other dynamic setting, or do they simply want to see the products against a solid background? There’s a good chance the answer is both, and you could include both image types as Ritual does, but A/B testing will tell you if one product image type resonates with your audience more strongly than the other.

Product Videos

Every single bit of research and data shows that video is the future. Even the most crisp, beautiful high-res images have limitations. Video is as close as merchants can get to bringing their product to life, short of having customers physically hold the products in their hands. If you haven’t yet fully committed to product videos, start with a few for some select products and see how they perform. If you already have product videos, test out an auto-play option and add captions to make it accessible and to catch the eye of customers surfing your site with their sound off.

List View vs Mosaic

It’s the job of your website to make it as easy as possible for customers to find the right product. But, what’s the best way to organize your products visually? For some, a grid view is more successful. For others, a mosaic produces better results. Try A/B testing the visual layout of your product pages and compare the user engagement for a list view versus a mosaic view. You could also ultimately provide both view options via small buttons above the product results, as iHerb does if you find that your shoppers respond well to having the choice.

BIGGER calls to action

Customers should never have to search for what they’re looking for on your page. It should always be fairly obvious where they should go for what they need. If they can’t find where to check out or add to cart then your site is failing. Those are the two most important elements of your store and when it comes to those CTAs, bigger is better. But what design, color scheme, and wording on your buttons work best? Test it out.

Feature Contact Information

It may seem like something small, but adding your contact information can have a big impact on your conversions. Relationships are built on trust, and customer/merchant relationships are no different. Customers want to know how to get in touch with you if something goes awry. Try prominently listing your email address, phone number, and (if applicable) physical location across the top of your site and see if your conversions are boosted. iHerb has a link to “24/7 Support” in the top right corner of their site to ensure customer service is only a click away for their shoppers. 

Static Image over Carousel

Carousels have fallen out of favor in recent years. Testing has shown they can often be distracting to customers, causing them to overlook details that merchants are often trying to get noticed, such as sales and new products. Vitamins and supplements eCommerce customers also crave control, which auto-carousels remove. So if you’re using a carousel (banner slider) at the top of your pages, try swapping that out for a static hero image with a single, clear proposition, as Now Foods has done. You may find that one bold image and message resonates more than a flurry of images and options.

Highlight a Price Reduction

If you’ve recently reduced the price of an item, make sure your customers know about it by showing them visually. But what’s the most effective way to show them? That’s what you need to test. Perhaps it’s a ‘slashed’ price, different colored text like Now Foods uses on their website, or an icon on the product image. There’s only one way to find out which works best for your site: A/B test it.

What to Prioritize With A/B Testing

You can avoid costly mistakes with your A/B testing if you know what to prioritize. Here are some things to do and keep in mind as you begin.

Test Your Most Profitable Pages First 

Start where the money is. Begin testing on the pages that bring you the most traffic and the most money to build on that success. 

Assign A/B Testing to a Single Person 

Give one person on your team the responsibility of A/B testing management, implementation, monitoring and reporting. The term “too many cooks in the kitchen” definitely applies to A/B testing. Keep things simple and empower a single person to handle these aspects.

Don’t Forget About Mobile 

Perform A/B tests on both mobile and desktop. Results for mobile can be 180 degrees from results you see on the desktop. What works for one doesn’t necessarily work for the other.

Start Big 

Begin by testing the larger elements on your pages; hero images, purchase buttons, product descriptions. Don’t get bogged down with testing the smaller elements until you’ve tested the larger elements and improved those first.

Test a Single Element at a Time 

Select one element at a time to test, otherwise, your results are going to be skewed and you won’t be able to determine what elements that are being tested are affecting the page.

Our team has a lot of experience in A/B testing to determine the most profitable outcome for vitamins and supplements eCommerce websites. If you’re ready to get the absolute most out of your website, contact us – and we’ll be happy to assist you.

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UPDATED: Unique eCommerce Challenges Facing the Supplements Industry

UPDATED: Unique eCommerce Challenges Facing the Supplements Industry

No matter how you slice it, eCommerce is everywhere. Every day, more companies are moving their business online. This comes with some perks and some challenges. The pharmaceutical industry is no different, but the challenges for this industry are unique. Read on to discover the challenges you might face as you bring (or expand) your pharma business online — and how you can have the best chance to succeed.

Challenge 1: Heavy regulations aren’t so easy to implement online.

In doctors’ offices, hospitals and pharmacies, the world of supplements and medications is heavily regulated. But with the rise of eCommerce, many over-the-counter supplements and prescription medications can now be sold online by anyone. In fact, studies show that 66% of countries around the world have no laws in place that regulate the online sales of medicine. In the United States, authorities do have many laws and regulations in place and try to step in to make sure that the public is receiving legitimate medications from legitimate sources. Unfortunately, however, this doesn’t always happen. As a result, each month, these US regulations shut down around 1,500 websites that sell medications to consumers without appropriate safeguards.

As a retailer of supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals, you have an obligation to stay-up-to-date with regulations and do your best to make sure your sales are legal and legitimate. If you don’t, regulatory authorities can then step in and produce a “buyers beware” message to help ensure that consumers are smart in their buying decisions. If your site runs counter to their message by selling any products with warnings attached to them you could lose credibility. 

Challenge 2: With online sales, there’s too little involvement by a healthcare professional.

Now that so many medications and supplements are available online, they’re easily accessed by anyone—whether or not there’s a doctor or pharmacist involved. This can lead to risky situations, with many people ordering supplements online without a diagnosis from a doctor or any idea of the right dosage from a pharmacist. This can easily cause supplements to be used in the wrong way or a patient taking too much of a certain supplement.

Supplements eCommerce retailers should always sell only legitimate products in recommended amounts. Failing to do so can easily land you in legal hot water. In August 2020, the FDA sent a warning letter to RX Easy Meds because they were “misbranding” their products. Before selling any supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals online, it’s vital to check the FDA’s website so you don’t find yourself in legal hot water too.

Challenge 3: All pharma eCommerce companies must not violate HIPAA regulations.

As a supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals retailer with an online business, you’re subject to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations, so it’s important to be aware of how to comply with them. 

HIPAA regulations can be extensive and complex. They ask companies to implement rules to protect patients’ health information, limit all sharing of confidential personal data and train all employees about security and confidentiality. As a result, you have to choose the right HIPAA-savvy eCommerce development partners so that your customers’ personal information is always secure and never exposed online or elsewhere. If you aren’t careful enough, hackers can breach your customers’ healthcare records, which can quickly send you down a road of unending legal troubles. Plus, customers are quick to abandon any company that makes them feel that their private information is at risk.

Conclusion

As your pharma company grows its eCommerce presence, you’re sure to face challenges along the way. It’s a great idea for online merchants to continually check in with legal counsel to make sure that all of their activity is above reproach. Failing to do so can quickly lead to items slipping through the cracks and then exposing a company to devastating losses. However, by knowing what’s coming and tackling those challenges in a smart way, your online sales are sure to be a success.

To find out how InteractOne can help with your supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals eCommerce business, contact us today.

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UPDATED: Upsell Strategies for Vitamins & Supplements eCommerce

UPDATED: Upsell Strategies for Vitamins & Supplements eCommerce

Upselling is an extremely powerful tool for an eCommerce website, bringing in extra revenue and increasing brand loyalty in a whole new way. We recently wrote about the art of upselling apparel and accessories online, but how does upselling differ for supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals eCommerce websites? Aside from increasing order value and bringing in extra revenue for merchants, it can improve the user experience and enhance customer care. With that in mind, why not try it? Here are three strategies for upselling on your supplements, vitamins or nutraceuticals eCommerce website.

Use “You Also Might Like” algorithms.

Most eCommerce websites use analytics all the time for a reason—because it works! When eCommerce sites use “You Might Also Like” algorithms, they’re simply analyzing the data about which products each customer views or purchases and then serving up similar items that the customer might also like to purchase.

In terms of supplements or vitamins eCommerce stores, here are a couple of examples: If a patient views a joint health supplement on your website, it’s a good idea to automatically populate suggested related items for the “You Might Also Like” section. This could include multivitamins or calcium supplements. For customers with diabetes, you can—and should—recommend supplements that can help replenish lost nutrients, such as vitamin B12.

A best practice for this tactic is to show these complementary items on the product page first, then on the shopping cart page, and finally on the order confirmation page. This provides three separate instances where you can work the magic of upselling. Your web programmer or development partner can easily add a “You Might Also Like” section that suggests certain products based on customer behavior and preferences.

Tie-in Personalization

Just as you can tailor product recommendations based on previous buying patterns, you can also tailor these recommendations with demographics-based personalization. For example, you can give certain recommendations based on age group, geographic location or family status. There are certain vitamins that are generally recommended for people in each age group, some vitamins can be more effective in certain parts of the country, and some vitamins are better for women, men, or a woman who is pregnant or breastfeeding. 

By obtaining a little personal information about customers and implementing it into your messaging, your supplements eCommerce store can make tailored recommendations that make sense.

In addition, because supplements should be consumed regularly (and they’re typically not just a one-off purchase), it’s a good idea to offer a discount for multiples. This not only increases your average sale, but also keeps your supply fresh.

Focus on solutions, not sales.

Yes, you’re in business to make money, but you won’t make much money at all if your customers don’t find your store useful. That’s why it’s important to keep sales in the back of your mind and make patient care your priority.

When you consider your customers’ needs first and foremost, you’ll be able to make informed decisions on how to upsell. Don’t think about simply suggesting the most expensive products. Instead, think about what will increase the effectiveness of your customers’ vitamin and supplement regimen and truly improve their health. 

When you suggest the right vitamins for each specific scenario, your customers receive better care. This inevitably leads to extra revenue for your eCommerce business.

Conclusion

When it’s done well, upselling can be a powerful tool to increase sales and overall profitability for your company, as well as introduce customers to new products. However, it can be difficult to build all of these upselling opportunities into a webstore or CRM system. That’s why we recommend working with a strong development team instead of trying to figure out and implement everything on your own.

InteractOne has years of experience managing upsells. We are a team of eCommerce website development and solution specialists who can help you map out and implement a powerful upsell strategy. Contact us today so that we can begin working together.

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February Vitamins & Supplements Orange Report

February Vitamins & Supplements Orange Report

February 2020 ORANGE REPORT

For this month’s Orange Report, we’re sharing a few of our best and most recent blogs that speak on all things Magento, eCommerce, and Digital Marketing. Like always, we encourage everyone using Magento to make the most of its functionalities by incorporating the very best Magento extensions and news.

SIGN UP FOR THE ORANGE REPORT

Everything you need to know about eCommerce, digital marketing, and Magento.

Your Go-To Guide for Selling Supplements Online

Your go-to guide — complete with benefits, guidelines and more — to begin successfully selling health supplements online today.

Top 3 Online Demographics of Supplement Buyers

Who is buying supplements online? Where can you find them? And how can you get them to your site? Keep reading to learn.

top-magento-extensions-of-2020-interactone-shipperhq

Padawan Series: Social Posts Your Brand Should Implement

There are many types of social media posts you can create for your account that can earn more followers, brand awareness and purchases. 

Decrease These Website Distractions; Increase Your Conversions

No matter what segment of the eCommerce industry your webstore is in, odds are there are an astonishing number of site elements on your site that overwhelm guests with useless tools, elements, and features.

What Vitamins, Supplements and Nutraceuticals Brands Must Know About Establishing A Loyalty Program

What Vitamins, Supplements and Nutraceuticals Brands Must Know About Establishing A Loyalty Program

As a vitamins, supplements, and nutraceuticals eCommerce retailer, if you’re missing a loyalty program, then you’re missing a lot. In today’s day and age, loyalty programs give a unique opportunity for eCommerce stores to form deeper, closer relationships with their customers. Read on to learn all about the benefits of a loyalty program, best practices, and more — so your online store can start reaping the benefits of a loyalty program today.

What is an eCommerce store loyalty program?

A loyalty program for an eCommerce store is a customer retention tool meant to keep customers engaged and loyal to your store. This leads to loyal customers shopping on your site more often and buying in higher quantities.

Many loyalty programs offer points for every dollar spent. Once enough points are accumulated, customers can either use those points to save money on their next purchase or redeem the points for a reward. In physical stores, loyalty programs usually come via a card you scan during checkout. For eCommerce stores, however, the merchant typically asks you to sign in, which then allows your loyalty information to populate and update based on any new purchases.

How popular are loyalty programs?

The most popular type of loyalty program in America are found at grocery stores. In fact, 74% of US adults are members of a grocery store’s loyalty program. However, pharmacies are not far behind. Studies show that 70% of US adults are members of at least one pharmacy or drugstore loyalty program.

What are the best practices of a loyalty program?

As you build your pharma eCommerce store’s loyalty program, keep these five tips in mind:

Use personalization. Today’s customers don’t want generic content. They appreciate customization that makes them feel personally engaged with a brand. Developing a specific loyalty program that helps customers monitor their unique health condition and gives personalized, relevant advice and offers goes a long way.

Focus your loyalty program on your existing customers, not on recruiting new customers. When it comes to loyalty programs, 80% of income comes from the top 20% of loyal customers. That’s why it’s important to keep your existing customers satisfied with your reward program. Look at your research and analytics to see what products and offers resonate with this audience, and then keep these rewards coming.

Introduce a progressive web app (PWA) instead of a plastic loyalty card. The days of plastic loyalty cards are nearly gone, as people increasingly have more information on their phones and less in their wallets. As a result, it’s a good idea to have your eCommerce store’s loyalty program easily accessible via phone. That way, customers can see their medication reminders, notifications, rewards and more all in a quick tap. For more info on PWAs, check out a blog post  we recently wrote about how pharmaceutical brands can profit from a PWA.

Give opportunities for customers to add more to their carts. A good loyalty program should incentivize its members to add more to their carts than they originally intended. To do this, offer “double-point campaigns” (such as: “Add this to your cart today and you’ll receive double the points on your entire purchase!”) and other targeted offers.

Host social media contests. The most successful loyalty programs encourage their members to interact with their brand on social media. Give your members points if they link their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts. Then, offer rewards for participating in social media contests. This is great for your members because they get more points and freebies, and it’s great for you because you get your supplement or vitamin brand’s name out there even more.

What are the benefits of a loyalty program?

There are three main benefits of creating a loyalty program for your supplements eCommerce site:

It increases brand awareness. Loyalty programs are straightforward ways to increase customers’ awareness of your brand and store. Over time, loyalty programs lead to customers becoming more and more attached and, well, loyal. This helps eCommerce stores maintain and build customer relationships for the long haul.

It helps you track your customers’ buying habits. With loyalty programs, it’s easy to keep track of what your customers buy. This helps you better manage inventory, offer relevant sales/specials and enhance your CRM database.

It builds brand advocates. As people come back to your store more often and engage more, they become brand advocates among their network of family and friends. This word-of-mouth marketing is invaluable, as it is sometimes shown to be trusted even more than a doctor’s advice. But don’t forget: Once these brand advocates are vocal about their loyalty to your store, they must feel appreciated. You can do this by offering exclusive offers just for them.

How has COVID-19 changed loyalty programs?

Even before the global pandemic, consumer shopping behavior was happening more and more online — but COVID-19 has only accelerated this change. People are beginning to engage differently. They want to feel connected to their favorite brands and they want value that they can’t find elsewhere. For many companies, the answer to this is a stand-out loyalty program. Giving customers access to personalized information, offers and rewards goes a long way.

Ready to start — or enhance — your online store’s loyalty program?

At InteractOne, this is one of our specialties. As a senior-level Magento partner, we know Magento loyalty functionality. Plus, we partner with leading eCommerce loyalty program companies, such as Nosto and Yotpo.

To see what we can do for your supplement or vitamin eCommerce store’s loyalty program, contact us today.

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Top 3 Online Demographics of Supplement Buyers

Top 3 Online Demographics of Supplement Buyers

Health supplement use has never been more popular than it is today. In fact, since the 1970s, there’s been a 40% increase in supplement use in adults 50 and older, and a 23% increase in adults younger than 50. In 2019, the supplement market was valued at $163 billion — and it’s forecasted to grow exponentially over the next few years.

As a supplement eCommerce retailer, this is great news for you. But who exactly is buying these supplements online? Where can you find them? And how can you get them to your site? Keep reading to learn about why people buy health supplements online, as well as the top three demographics of online supplement buyers.

Why do people buy health supplements online?

No matter who your audience is, the most common reason that people buy supplements online is because they’re experiencing some kind of pain, ache or health problem and they want to feel better. Other popular reasons that people buy/take supplements are to ensure that they get the recommended amount of vitamins, improve their energy levels, boost their immune system, improve any digestive issues and/or to lower their cholesterol.

In addition, a growing number of people are turning to health supplements because they don’t feel that they receive the right nutrients in their food alone. As a result, they try supplements in the forms of vitamins, minerals, botanicals and more. Many choose to buy them online because it’s quick, easy, convenient and doesn’t require a trip to the store.

What are the top three demographics of online health supplements buyers?

There’s a wide variety of people who buy health supplements online. According to our research, here are three of the top demographics:

1. Women 60+ in the United States 

In a nationwide survey, 49% of adults in the US say that they take health supplements. This group is made up of mostly women (54%), although men are beginning to take more supplements as time goes on. In addition, results of the survey also show that supplement use increases with age. In the age group of 20 to 39, 34% of people took supplements. In the age group of 40 to 59, it was 50%. And in the age group of 60+, 67% say they buy/take supplements. 

Where you can find this demographic elsewhere: When looking at where you can find this top demographic (women 60+) online, many are visiting dating sites, retirement living sites, travel sites, AARP’s website and Facebook. Advertising your online supplement store on any of these sites will definitely yield some valuable results.

2. People 60+ with health insurance

Of all Americans without health insurance, 31% say they buy their supplements online. However, of all Americans with health insurance, 53% say they buy their supplements online. That’s largely because more and more people are taking a personal, vested interest in their health and consider themselves to be digitally savvy. As a result, they’re looking for medications and supplements online vs. in a doctor’s office.

Where you can find this demographic elsewhere: For starters, this audience can be found on many different health insurance websites, such as Anthem, United Healthcare, Cigna, Aetna and more. In addition, this audience frequently visits retirement websites and websites about aging. Advertising your eCommerce store in these places is a great idea.

3. People who report high levels of exercise

When people who rarely exercise were surveyed, 43% of them say they buy supplements online. However, when people who report high levels of exercise were surveyed, 56% of this group say they buy supplements online. 

Where you can find this demographic elsewhere: Not surprisingly, this demographic is all over websites featuring topics such as gyms, health, fitness, weight loss and stress management. Getting a catchy banner ad and/or a short blog post about your supplement eCommerce store on any of these types of websites will inevitably increase the traffic to your site — and then increase your sales.

Conclusion

When you’re trying to acquire new customers, finding them where they are online is key. It’s the first step to getting them familiar with your eCommerce store before their interest is piqued and they land on your site’s beloved “Shop” page.

At InteractOne, we work closely with our clients to find these audiences and then increase the high-converting traffic to their own sites. To learn more about how we can help your company, contact us today.

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Evolving Pharma Trends and What to Expect in 2021

Evolving Pharma Trends and What to Expect in 2021

With so many brick and mortar stores closing last year due to the pandemic, online shopping has become even more popular, and basically essential—especially in the pharmaceutical and supplements world. This has meant vast changes in the way pharma eCommerce websites must operate; a lot of nice-to-haves are quickly becoming essential. Pharma retailers are finding they have to either stay up-to-date on the ever-changing world of eCommerce, or fall behind. 

We’ve been monitoring the market closely and observed some key trends in pharma eCommerce becoming increasingly prominent. Read on for what to expect in the pharma industry in 2021.

Quick, Inexpensive Order Fulfillment is Key

A growing number of people are abandoning their cart as they shop online. Two of the main reasons for this are high shipping costs and long shipping times. People don’t want to spend much on shipping, and they want their orders yesterday (thanks Amazon for both of these). If they have their cart full but then the shipping charge comes up as way more than they were anticipating and/or they won’t receive their order for a while, they abandon their cart and move on to the next site that promises products in a quicker, cheaper way.

To combat this problem, make sure—if you can—that your pharma/supplement company’s shipping costs are low (or free after a certain amount) and that your shipping times are short. It’s usually worth it to make your products a little bit more expensive, by building in some of your shipping costs, if it means keeping the customer’s shipping costs low. In the long run, it’s also usually worth it for your company to take a bit of a hit if it means getting your customers their products more quickly.

If you have a physical building and an eCommerce website, it may be worth it to tap into the new trend of BOPIS, or Buy Online, Pick up In Store. Customers like this option because even though they still need to go to a brick and mortar store, they don’t need to spend time shopping around, as their order is exactly what they requested and it’s already waiting for them when they arrive. If your company doesn’t have a physical location, consider partnering with companies that do have one and also cater to BOPIS customers, such as Kohls.

Pop-up Shops Are Popular for a Reason

With eCommerce on the rise and in-store sales on the decline, in-person pop-up shops may not sound like a great idea. However, over the past few years, eCommerce retailers have learned that pop-up shops do very well. Their unique physical presence helps spread awareness of your company to a new audience.

When picking a spot for your pharma/supplements pop-up shop, choose wisely. Where does your target audience hang out? Where does your brand fit in? Think about cities, towns and then physical locations. The most common places for pop-up shops are vacant storefronts and kiosks in shopping malls. Setting up shop at a farmer’s market is also a good idea for a pharmaceutical audience. When you catch your customers in the right place, you’ll get their attention—and their business.

A Shoppable Instagram Is Essential

One new perk of Instagram for eCommerce retailers is that this platform can now be used to sell products directly. The key here is to have an active Instagram page and then to tag any products you feature. If a post resonates with your customers, they can simply click the photo to see more information and then buy your products in just a few clicks, right from the Instagram app.

Another good, relevant strategy is to partner with influencers who share your company’s vision and can create and share shoppable content for your pharma brand. At InteractOne, we know the value of a great influencer. Read some of our recent blog posts about the rise and power of nano influencers and social media tactics proven to increase traffic to your webstore.

Subscription Services Satisfy Everyone

Year after year, the demand for subscription services only increases, and that’s because they’re a win-win for both customers and merchants.

For customers, they know exactly what they’re getting and when they’re getting it. Their beloved products are delivered regularly as scheduled and always just as expected. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that!

For merchants, having customers enrolled in a subscription service allows the companies to better forecast what’s needed and thus have better management of their inventory. Plus, it’s much better for a company to have a lot of dedicated customers that are loyal to the company week after week, month after month, than to have a handful of one-off customers who order once and then forget to return.

Drone Delivery Is Here to Stay

In 2020 drone delivery became a mainstream reality, with an estimated three million operational drones in the air. With the ever-present desire for convenience, coupled with extended periods of social distancing, drone deliveries are predicted to become even more popular in 2021.

The benefit of drone delivery for eCommerce retailers is that most packages can be delivered within 30 minutes. That makes for a lot of happy customers! Plus, drone delivery can save companies millions of dollars in shipping costs.

The drone industry really took off in 2015, when the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) streamlined the registration process for companies. However, there still hasn’t been a pharmaceutical company that has fully integrated drones into their operations. With the need to protect patient safety being so important, most pharma companies are hesitant to take the leap just yet. However, as drone delivery companies continue to learn and grow, it’s just a matter of time before pharma companies jump on the bandwagon.

Automated Marketing Driven by Artificial Intelligence

Many businesses are already utilizing Artificial Intelligence in their marketing, and those that continue to do so will keep winning big. That’s because artificial intelligence helps businesses qualify leads faster and more accurately, and helps them show visitors more appropriate content. By delivering a progressive sequence of questions in automated chat conversations, businesses can quickly identify customers’ needs and then sort them into specific personas based on these needs. The AI then shows the customer relevant content that meets those needs. This reduces demand on human customer service, and assists visitors quickly and efficiently. It’s another win-win for businesses and customers, saving everyone time.

Video Content is Vital

Much has been said about video and its huge effect across all industries, but its influence is only growing. As more websites incorporate video content, it only proves to be more powerful and popular with consumers. The more compelling your content, the more likely you are to attract and retain customers.

The possibilities with video are as wide-ranging as your imagination. In the past year we’ve seen everything from short explainers on products and services, to full-blown series of videos like the Mayo Clinic Minutes, which offers general health and wellness tips.

Businesses that engage in social listening and pay close attention to what their audiences are searching for, and that then cater to those needs with easily digestible video content, will be the winners in 2021 and beyond.

Conclusion

These are just seven of the key evolving trends we’re seeing in the pharma/supplements eCommerce space. Want to find out more, and take advantage of these trends? InteractOne can help your pharma or supplement business stay ahead of the curve and increase sales. Contact us today for more.

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Your Go-To Guide for Selling Supplements Online

Your Go-To Guide for Selling Supplements Online

Your go-to guide for selling health supplements online (DTC)

As a health supplement distributor or manufacturer, you’ve got the team and processes  to sell your products via the B2B distribution chain. But what about when you want to begin selling directly to consumers (DTC)? Selling health supplements online DTC is more popular than ever, and the market is growing every day. But don’t be intimidated. Here’s your go-to guide — complete with benefits, guidelines and more — so you can begin successfully selling health supplements online today.

Benefits of selling health supplements online

The future is digital. There’s no denying it. Seemingly everything is going online, especially in a post-COVID world. And when it comes to selling health supplements, it’s no different. The vast majority of health companies choose to sell online for many reasons, including:

  • There’s no need to spend money on a brick and mortar store. This cuts overhead costs tremendously. No rent to pay, no store to clean. Just a website to run.
  • You can be open 24/7. When you run a business online, there are no open and close times. You’re available to your customers any time they need supplements.

Overall, selling health supplements online is simpler and much less expensive for your company than selling in a brick and mortar store. But, it’s not just the “wild west” in the digital space. Selling supplements online comes with its own set of rules and limitations.

Government guidelines

When selling supplements online directly to consumers, there are a lot of government guidelines to consider. The supplement space can be tricky because omitting information or having incorrect information can get retailers in hot water very quickly.

In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the production and sale of all health supplements. Here’s what they require to be listed on each product:

  • All ingredients
  • The manufacturer
  • The packaging site
  • A product description
  • The word “supplement”

Here’s a link to a page on the FDA website that explains more about these requirements.

In addition, it is illegal to make any claim that a supplement will treat a condition or provide medicinal benefits. You absolutely cannot claim that your product will help people achieve anything at all unless you can back it up with authentic scientific studies. If you do make a claim, it must be accompanied by the following text: “This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.”

If supplements are mislabeled in any way, companies will receive a letter from the FDA. Every year, the FDA sends hundreds of letters to various organizations for mislabeling their products. Once a company receives a letter from the FDA, they have 15 days to respond and remedy the situation. If a company fails to do so, the FDA will enforce recalls and/or seizures of products.

Selling health supplements on social media

In today’s day and age, social media is absolutely vital for selling health supplements. It is widely known in the supplement world that using social media effectively is generally the “magic trick” for a successful supplement business. There are a few crucial things to consider as you begin to market your health supplements on social media.

  • Choose the right social platforms. You might think that selling the maximum amount of health supplements means having a big presence on every social media channel. Sometimes it does, but usually it doesn’t. Usually, with each specific supplement, not every social media network will be a good fit. Begin the process of selling on social media by identifying your customers and choosing a social network (or two) that gives you the best and most appropriate opportunity to speak to your target market.  
  • Build your network. You can start this process by searching for relevant keywords or hashtags (such as “health supplements” or #healthsupplements). Once you’ve found some people interested in your space, respond to their questions, comment on their posts, like their content and share their relevant posts. The goal is that they check out your page, like what they see and become a loyal customer. Selling supplements and building an audience on social media can be time consuming and competitive, but interacting with your audience in meaningful ways will help you gain ground.
  • Market differently on each social media platform.  Let’s say your research has taught you that your brand should focus on Instagram. In that case, partnering with an influencer can help you sell much more effectively. However, if your audience is more active on Facebook, Pinterest, eBay, etc., then there are other best practices to use. Keep in mind the best social networks for your specific product and audience, and then market and sell with that in mind. Whatever platforms you end up choosing, you must prioritize monitoring those platforms. Platform users are prone to comment and sometimes in a negative,  sometimes trolling style. Merchants need to be ready and armed with responses to defend claims and diffuse negative comments.

Don’t have a digital presence yet?

If your company isn’t online just yet, don’t worry. There’s no better time to start your health supplement eCommerce site.

Conclusion

Once you’ve created an amazing line of health supplements, it’s time to share them with the world — and what better place to do that than online? After you’ve mastered the government guidelines and learned how to effectively market to your target audience, all that’s left to do is sell.

There are excellent eCommerce platforms available on which to build your webstore. We can help you choose the correct one to meet your needs – and help you create and market your eCommerce presence.

To learn more about how InteractOne can help you sell health supplements online directly to consumers, contact us.

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Smart Email Strategies to Increase Pharmaceutical Sales

Smart Email Strategies to Increase Pharmaceutical Sales

When it comes to selling supplements, vitamins and nutraceuticals, email is king. In fact, when surveyed, most doctors across the country say that they prefer this type of communication over all other potential marketing channels. So why is email so popular in the supplements world, and how can you be sure that your emails are effective? Keep reading to learn all of this and more.

What’s the benefit of email for healthcare professionals?

You might be wondering why so many doctors prefer email over many other routes of communication. It all comes down to time. The benefit of email for healthcare professionals is that it can be done on their own time. Doctors are extraordinarily busy people, and making time to hear from a sales rep, download apps, or fetch their snail mail is unlikely to happen very often. However, emails can be opened quickly and easily when it’s convenient for them.

What’s the benefit of email for pharma marketers?

Sending a sales rep or snail mail can be sufficient in some cases, but these modes of communication make it hard to measure results and ROI. With email, however, getting results and measuring ROI is pretty simple and very effective.

When supplements eCommerce retailers have a good CRM program in place and use it to send an email, they instantly know who opened the email (or didn’t open it), when they opened it and what actions they took from it. Open rates, click-through rates, and bounce rates are readily available, which makes subsequent marketing efforts even easier. After a few emails, supplements marketers can reliably see what information is most important for the recipients and then create more effective emails going forward.

An additional benefit of email is that the vast majority of your recipients will actually receive your message. Emails have a delivery rate of 90% or more, whereas even viral posts on social media typically only reach about 5% of your social audience.

Top email marketing strategies

A lot of research has been done about what’s best to do (and not do) with emails in order to increase pharma sales. Here are a few key takeaways.

Make the emails mobile friendly. A whopping 80% of healthcare professionals say that they mostly read emails on their phones, not their computers. As a result, emails need to be adapted to various devices and screens in a mobile-friendly format.

Make the emails personalized and targeted. Doing this creates a better experience for each recipient. After you discover which person clicks on which content, you can use that information to personalize subsequent email communications. Your recipients will feel heard and thus become more engaged with your company.

Include tips and offers they don’t get elsewhere. Having unique tips in your emails is powerful for your audience. The most successful things to include in pharma emails include tips for remembering to take your medicine on time, as well as exclusive offers they can use when they order in your online store.

Do subject line testing. Subject line testing has been shown to exponentially increase your open rates and customer loyalty. This may sound simple, but it’s vital! If your recipients don’t like or understand the subject line of your email, they won’t open it… and that ends the line of communication. Subject line testing is crucial, but studies show that most email campaigns don’t take advantage of A/B subject line testing. Missing out on this means missing out on a lot of potential engagement. In addition, it’s often a good idea to include a teaser for the tips that are included in the email in the subject line.

Consider the frequency and timing of your emails. In general, it’s best to begin sending emails every other week and then increase it to once a week. Then, you can send them more frequently once someone is opening your emails and engaging with them. However, in terms of timing, things aren’t so cut and dry. Test the timing of your emails to see when your audience engages the most. Just like it’s important to A/B test subject lines, it’s also important to A/B test the best times to send emails. You’ll learn a lot from this and then be able to increase your open rates as a result.

Tips for supplements-specific emails

There are best practices for emails, and then there are best practices for supplement emails. The supplement space carries many unique limitations that must be considered when creating and sending emails.

To start, a supplements email must be completely optimized before the medical and legal approval process can begin. Ignoring this rule limits your ability to make changes that can improve open rates, click-through rates, and ROI. In addition, making sure that your emails are optimized before submitting them to the medical and legal team has been shown to get the project done much faster.

Another example of a supplements-specific email tip is to fill the email with pertinent, relevant, supplements-related information. The more specific the information, the more useful it is for the recipient—and the greater the chance that the recipient will engage with your brand. For example, if your company knows when each recipient should refill their prescriptions, you can send a timely email when it’s time to do so. Your recipients will appreciate your attention to detail and dedication to their unique needs.

Conclusion

With email on the rise, creating effective emails has never been more important. And with healthcare professionals relying more and more on email for most of their communications, it’s vital that pharma retailers optimize emails as much as possible. Employing certain strategies can pay off in a big way when it comes to customer loyalty and engagement.

To find out how InteractOne can help with email marketing for your supplements eCommerce website, contact us today.

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Standing Out in a Crowd: How to Market Your Pharmaceuticals

Standing Out in a Crowd: How to Market Your Pharmaceuticals

When marketing pharmaceuticals, doing so online is a great strategy. In fact, in 2020, pharma marketers will spend $3 billion on digital advertising alone. Simply put, pharma companies can no longer rely on brand name recognition and print advertising to drive their sales. They must pivot to create a remarkable presence online.

However, with almost all pharma companies heading this direction—and with differentiation between existing products getting smaller—how do you ensure that your pharmaceuticals make an impact in the digital world? Keep reading to learn the top three most effective strategies for marketing your pharmaceuticals online—so they stand out from the competition.

Tap in to the biggest trends in pharma marketing.

The digital world is huge—and some pharma marketers aren’t sure where to start. Research tells us that the hottest current trends in pharma marketing strategies involve videos and social media. Posting videos on your website and on your social media channels is crucial for growing awareness of your product and therefore your sales.

However, just posting frequently isn’t enough. Once the videos and social media campaigns have launched, it’s important to keep a close eye on interactions and conversions in order to keep people engaged with your pharma brand.

Another growing trend to implement when marketing pharmaceuticals online is to go easy on the branded content. In fact, unbranded content is becoming even more powerful. For example, if you create a website about a specific condition—without even mentioning your products by name, but instead giving general information—consumers can relate to the story and facts you present on that site. Once they’re drawn in this way, pharma companies can then give a subtle nod to their product. This informs your audience about your product by pulling on their heartstrings, not shoving it in their faces.

If you can combine all three of these ideas—videos, social media and unbranded content—you have a recipe for success online.

Lead with the problem, finish with the solution.

Many pharma companies begin their online marketing with their product name and what it does. Then, they end up back pedaling to get to the problem with which their customers are struggling. Along the way, it’s easy for customers to get lost and thus lose interest.

One simple (but powerful) way to avoid this is to lead your online marketing with the problem. For example: “Does mild exercise cause you to have trouble breathing?” or “Do your legs feel tingly when you wake up?” That way, customers feel an instant connection and continue reading (or watching or clicking) to see what solution your product can offer.

Especially when marketing online, where space is small and people have limited time and small attention spans, it’s important to pique your customer’s interest right away. This problem-first approach easily lends itself to many digital mediums—banner ads, e-newsletters, videos, websites, social media posts and more.

Use specific analytics and keywords to come up first in search results.

The pharma space online is congested, to say the least. Someone searching for a pharmaceutical solution to their specific problem is faced with countless pages of search results that are all promising a great solution.

However, your pharma company can stand out simply by using a few keywords to position your solution at the top of search results. First, analyze existing search results to find commonly-searched keywords. Then, create digital content with those keywords included. Next, be sure that your unique content is published on websites that have high traffic and good reputations in the pharma world. Finally, optimize your content until search engines rank it on the first page.

Conclusion

With pharma marketers spending more and more on digital advertising each day, it’s never been more important to ensure that your pharmaceuticals stand out online. By following these top three tips, you’re on your way to successfully differentiating yourself from the competition—yielding unmatched results in your brand awareness, brand loyalty and profits.

To learn more about how InteractOne can help you improve your pharmaceutical marketing online, contact us today.

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