Since medicine is a basic human need, a pharmacy business is a stable business idea. It’s also highly profitable, with a profit margin ranging from 15% to 50%.
However, starting a pharmacy business also requires high costs. The pharmacy location, professional fees of licensed staff, and the cost of medicines and supplies can all affect your business’ overall profitability.
Gamot Publiko’s President and CEO Melvin Lim shared four winning tips when starting a pharmacy business with Esquire.
1. Keep Your Pharmacy Stocked
According to Lim, it’s very important that your pharmacy has the right number of SKUs (stock keeping units). Availability and accessibility of medicines and health supplies are essential.
Customers often remember where they can easily buy their medicines, especially if they are maintenance medications. If your pharmacy keeps on disappointing your customers due to lack of availability, chances are they won’t try to buy from you again.
2. Make It A One-Stop Shop
If your capital can, add more essential goods to your pharmacy like hygiene products, baby essentials, little stock of canned goods, toiletries, and the like. This will make buying from your pharmacy convenient for your customers.
3. Make It Accessible And Affordable
Find ways to make purchasing in your pharmacy accessible and affordable. You can offer delivery services, call and pickup services, or online payments. Keep up with the new technologies to make buying their needs easy and convenient.
Lim also advised keeping medicines affordable and competitive. Offer choices to your customers to choose what’s affordable for them.
“It is good to offer quality generic medicines to your customers as they will be able to save money and use their savings for other essential items that their family may need,” Lim said.
4. Hire Experienced Professionals
Take experts’ advice on technical aspects of your pharmacy. First, you can find a lawyer to help you process the legal status of your pharmacy. You have to determine if your pharmacy is under sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability corporation, or corporation.
These are important legal matters that can affect the operations of your pharmacy. Seek advice on the details of an independent retail pharmacy business.
Next, hire a licensed pharmacist. They should be well-trained and knowledgeable about medicines. It’s also helpful if they have training or experience handling customers.
If you starting a pharmacy from the ground up is too taxing for you, you can also consider franchising. For example, if you want to know to start franchising the Generics Pharmacy, prepare at least P800,000 in capital.
Like any other business, a pharmacy is also meant to be profitable. However, entrepreneurs shouldn’t forget that the goal of a pharmacy is to provide access to medicines to a community.
If you have decided to franchise, keep in mind there are questions to ask your franchisor before signing a contract. Among these are the company’s history, financial stability, and more.