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SEO: Pharmacy’s Missing Secret Weapon

In this presentation delivered at The Pharmacy Show in 2021, Saam talks about how Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) can help plant your private services on the first page of Google and drive significant revenue from them

 

SEO_ Pharmacy’s Missing Secret Weapon

The presentation has been transcribed below:

 

Slide 2

That graph represents the most remarkable story for a particular independent pharmacy up in Scotland.

Can you see that red arrow there…that’s when I still classed the business as a pharmacy back in May 2020.

Its private service offering was doing well but like most other pharmacies, its bread and butter were prescriptions.
But fast forward to today, I can no longer call this business a pharmacy. A more accurate description would be along the lines of:

Slide 3

“Hollistic Primary Healthcare Hub”

Let that slide sink in for a second.

Look at how the private service offering today now dwarves its NHS services, and look at the variety there. Not only can you get your prescription, but this “pharmacy” can also help you:

  • Get your yellow fever vaccine before you travel
  • Remove that excess build-up of wax in your ears
  • Feel more energetic with a Vitamin B12 injection
  • Clear up your chest infection with antibiotics through its private GP offering
  • Access a dentist immediately to help with your persistent toothache
  • Help you lose weight via the most powerful POM treatment on the market

And much, much more…

It truly is a one-stop-shop for many of your healthcare needs.

Slide 4

Whatsmore, this business is absolutely thriving financially. The private service side is generating more revenue than its NHS side, and much more profit. Prescriptions have become their secondary source of income. They are now working on automating more of their prescription journey so that profits can improve on that side too.

Slide 5

For me, that’s the future of Community Pharmacy. Automating the prescription journey as much as possible and focussing on the provision and growth of clinical services.

Not only will you be building more avenues of revenue, but you’re stepping away from the mundane tasks of checking prescriptions towards a more fulfilled holistic service approach, and improving access to healthcare in your area.

This kind of opportunity exists for all pharmacies around the Nation. It’s how your gonna survive and massively thrive.

Slide 6

Now, getting to this position requires that you innovate and think about your business in a different way.

There are many factors that you have to consider, such as:

  • Getting trained to provide these services in the first place
  • Making sure you have the right resource levels to deliver
  • You’ve developed strong SOP’s , and so on.

Essentially, you need to be in a position to be able to deliver these services well to your patients.

But aside from delivery, you will not get towards the success levels of this pharmacy without the right digital infrastructure around your services, and investing in marketing. And in terms of marketing, one of the secret weapons to driving 100’s of clinic bookings every month is Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO.

SEO is what I’m gonna talk about primarily in this session. It is the most underutilised marketing tactic in pharmacy but one that offers the biggest opportunity, and I firmly believe it can change the landscape of Clinical Community Pharmacy.

Slide 7

So just before we get into the juicy world of SEO, a little bit about me. I’m a pharmacist..have been for the last 14 yrs, and I’ve managed all sizes of pharmacy businesses, from large chain multiples to the single independent.

But for the last 8 years, I’ve been building websites and marketing digitally, two things which I absolutely adore doing. So much so, I ended up building Pharmacy Mentor, which is a specialist marketing and development agency, for pharmacies.

Now, of all the marketing channels that I know, SEO has always been my fave.

But, also I know how business-changing SEO can be. And it’s one of the main reasons Pharmacy Mentor gets business…if you take your phone out now open chrome and type either of the words “Pharmacy Marketing” or “Pharmacy Website Design” – you’ll see PM right at the top there, just below the Ads. That’s SEO. I want people to find our company for those specific keywords.

Slide 8

So what is Search Engine Optimisation exactly?

In the words of the SEO guru himself, Neil Patel, he describes SEO as “the process of taking steps to help a website or piece of content rank higher on Google.”

So, just from that definition there, we know we need a website or content online to make this work.

Slide 9

To take it a bit further, SEO is all about ranking higher on Google organically and not paying Google to be at the top.

Now, this bit is really important to understand. SEO involves optimising a piece of digital content so that when someone searches for something in particular, in a search engine like Google, that piece of content shows up towards the top of the results.

You can always pay for Advertising space to drive traffic immediately. However, if you can get there without paying for Ads, you’re gonna yield a much stronger return on investment and it will be much more cost-effective for you in the long run.

Slide 10

To help you understand this visually, take a look at the following slide. Let’s say you’re a pharmacy owner, which in this audience, most of you probably are, and you’re looking for some help to grow your EPS numbers. You’ve heard from a friend of yours that another pharmacy grew their item numbers quite successfully by doing a mailshot in their area. So, you decide to do some research into it.

You log onto Google, and you search for something like “mailshot service pharmacy” or “mailshot for a pharmacy”, for example.

Get your phone out now and try it yourselves now if you can log onto Google.

Right at the top there, you can see company’s paying for that Ad space and are getting charged every time someone clicks on the link. This is Pay Per Click.

But, right underneath this, you can see a page for our company that has been optimised for those keywords. We don’t pay to be there and we don’t pay every time someone clicks on the link. And of course, out of all of those options on the slide there, you’re gonna click on our link because it talks to you so perfectly. “Let’s drive prescription numbers” – Yes, please – click! And because of this article and the way that it speaks to pharmacy owners on Google, we get business from it.

That’s SEO in action right there.

Now the thing is, this pharmacy owner had never heard of Pharmacy Mentor before today. They would have never have typed the words “Pharmacy Mentor” into Google.

Slide 11

Rather, pharmacy owners are looking for the services they require on Google and that’s how our company gets found. Over the years, we’ve optimised content for 100’s of pharmacy owner specific keywords and as a result, we obtain 10,000’s of page views every month that is super targeted for our audience.

Slide 12

Also, incredibly interestingly, with Google’s Keyword Planner, I can check what kind of monthly search volume each keyword has which will help me work out which of them I should focus on more than others.
And this can even be location-specific. So, for example, if I wanted to find out how many searches were made for the keyword “pharmacy websites” in Manchester, I can view that data.

Slide 13

So, how does all this translate for your business?

What keywords should you guys be focussing on?

And what do you then do with those keywords?

Slide 14

Well, the best place to start off when trying to find these is to follow the basic formula that you can see on the screen right there.

That formula, although very simple looking, is worth hundreds of thousands every year to a pharmacy, especially one that offers private clinics. And I’m not exaggerating in the slightest here.

Now, it’s worth mentioning that there really isn’t a limit to the number of keywords you can target. There are 100’s, if not 1000’s of them of various lengths and combinations, and that’s one of the reasons SEO is a never-ending game. You can’t really run out of SEO and I’ll talk more about the other reasons why a tad later.

Slide 15

So, following this formula:

1. Firstly, make a list of all the services and products you really want to push and make more money from:

  • NHS and Private Prescriptions
  • Flu vaccineTravel Clinic
  • Yellow fever vaccineMeningitis Vaccine (Hajj and Umrah)
  • Malaria TabletsAesthetics Clinic
  • Botox
  • Lip fillers
  • Vampire Facial

2. List the geographical locations you want to target

3. Begin developing the keyword list using the formula above:

So, understanding the services I want to promote and where my target audience are, some of these would be:

  • Yellow fever vaccine Warrington
  • Flu Vaccine Warrington
  • Lip fillers Warrington

And so on.

So as you can see there, I’m now starting to create a list of top-level, highly powerful keywords for my business.

So let’s say I’ve made a list of 20 keywords and I’ve checked on Google’s keywords planner that they are in fact being searched for by people in my area.

What now?

Slide 16

Well, it’s time for me to start creating content. I need to get some content up online and I need to optimise it for the keywords I’ve just listed. That’s where my website comes into play.

So, how do you optimise content exactly?

I’ve only got a short time with you guys today, I can’t go into the full details of optimisation, because it’s technical and extensive.

There is so much you can do to make your content appear higher in search results, but the two things I should mention for now are the following:

  • Make sure you create and optimise an entire page for each service and keyword that you want to target, and blog consistently every month.
  • The more content you can create…

If you get these two nailed, you can expect to begin driving tonnes more traffic to your website, hence revenue and profit.

But like I said before, SEO is a never ending game. My advice of creating optimised content on your website through service pages and blogging represents about 20% of the vast universe that SEO is. Site Speed, SSL certificates, site maps and metadata to mention a few all play a role in ranking your content higher. But the real reason you can’t run out is the world of backlinks and off-page SEO.

Slide 17

So, going back to the formula and on-page optimisation, this is exactly the strategy we executed when working with this pharmacy I showed you at the start. We took care of a lot of technical SEO for them naturally, which I’ll remind you is very important, but we followed the same formula I described before.

We developed a keyword and content strategy for them and got to work creating optimised content on the website.

The graph shows how many website link clicks and how many people have viewed those links on Google since May 2020 last year.

Now, I can’t deny that Covid helped our cause a lot in this scenario but it’s the optimised content that we have developed, and continue doing so, that has caused the increase you can see here.

You see, COVID accelerated digital behavioural change. People became glued to their phones and began looking for services and products near them at a level never seen before in human history. People didn’t know what was open or closed and people had to do their research via Google.

For this particular pharmacy, COVID testing services, ear wax removal, phlebotomy and private GP proved to be hugely popular keywords in their area.

If you have a look at that green box there, it tells you that over the period of this time, we developed 70,000 website clicks and over 2 million people have seen these links on Google. Purely organically. That’s a mind blowing result.

That’s why this pharmacy is generating £millions of pounds in revenue every year from private services, and the more work we do for them in terms of SEO, the more they will make.

And that’s really why I can no longer class this business as a pharmacy.

Slide 18

So, how do you get started?

Well, of course, you can try to find the time to learn how to do all of this yourself and if you do want to, I’ve popped some really useful links there to help get you started.

But, your pharmacy owners. And that means you haven’t got much time.

So the best thing for you to do would be to find a freelancer or an agency that specialise in SEO to do it for you.

But remember, first and foremost, you need a good, solid website to begin developing the optimised content on, and you need to develop a content keyword strategy to work from.

And lastly, this is a long-term strategy designed to develop traffic and revenue over time. It’s important to note that you’re not going to see results immediately. It takes time for Google and other search engines to index the content you create and it’s not certain how long this can take. It may take a week to index, or 3 months. Plus, we need to keep on top of how Google is altering their bots and algorithms at all times.

But you have to start somewhere and if you’re offering private services, the marketing channel that I would be focussing on is SEO.

Slide 19

My name’s Saam and we’d love to talk to you about how wwe can help your pharmacy business succeed.


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marketing ehc & ed in pharmacy
Emergency Contraception & Erectile Dysfunction services are such important services, providing care to people in vulnerable situations. But navigating ethics, regulations, and public perceptions when promoting these services is tricky.

Marketing Emergency Hormone Contraception and Erectile Dysfunction (EHC & ED) is important to get right. Not only does it help deliver care and change lives for the people in your community, but marketed correctly, these services help keep your business profitable and sustainable.

So let’s take a look at effectively marketing your ED & EHC services in 5 simple steps.

1. Sensitivity first

As a pharmacist, you don’t need me telling you that Erectile Dysfunction & Emergency Hormone Contraception are both sensitive services from a patient’s perspective. Discretion, judgement free delivery of these services is a must. And whilst neutrality is one thing, compassion also goes a long way.

You probably manage your services in this way – but not everyone does. Patients may have previous bad experiences, so make your pharmacy’s approach clear.

Remember: your entire pharmacy team needs to be 100% sure on how to manage these patient experiences. Semi-regular briefings help keep everyone on the same page.

2. Perfect Patient Experience

Other than your pharmacy team’s conduct, there are ways of providing a service which your community values.

The main things they value with both services are discretion, safety and effectiveness.

That’s one of the main draws of the direct online route – people ideally want complete privacy.

Whilst you might not win over every single patient who might’ve otherwise gone online, providing an environment promoting privacy gives a convenient alternative.

Consider offering at least one of the following:

  • A Pharmacy Messenger/WhatsApp channel for patients to communicate through.
  • Online booking facilities for private consultation rooms.
  • Video Consultations

3. Advertising Do’s & Don’t’s for EHC & ED

As per medicine advertising guidelines, you cannot directly advertise Prescription-Only Medicines (POM’s). It’s good practice to promote the service or condition you’re treating rather than the medicine itself.

  • DO
  • DO show sensitivity in your wording of any advertising of your service
  • DO make use of Local SEO & Sponsored Social Media Ads to advertise your service.
  • DO make sure you aren’t violating terms and conditions when using Facebook & Google.
  • DO Ask Pharmacy Mentor for advice if you aren’t sure.
  • DON’T
  • DON’T Include ED or EHC in any discounts or special offers. This makes patients feel like you’re charging more than you could ordinarily.
  • DON’T Advertise POM’s directly. Always advertise the condition or service.
  • DON’T forget your pharmacy reputation is affected by the style of your advertising, for better or worse.
  • DON’T try to compete on price – compete on service and trust instead.

Making your EHC & ED Services get clicks on Google

There are two stages of getting clicks on Google.

The first is appearing on Google in the first place. But we’ll cover that in the next section.

But let’s say that, either through publishing relevant content on your website, or paying to appear on Google through Google Advertising you appear on Google, like in this image below.

google results for ehc pill

How do you ensure your website is the one that gets clicked, instead of your competition?

Put your USP in your headline

Your opening line on anything promoting your service is like a headline of a newspaper. Grabbing your audience immediately is the name of the game, but it requires balance, so you aren’t perceived as clickbait or spammy, especially on sensitive subjects like ED & EHC.

There’s limited space for your headlines, so prioritising is key.

What is your main USP? The reason your consumers choose you over your competitors? Those should be in your headline.

The Superdrug advert below does a good job with “No Doctors Visit Required.” This addresses a concern of their target market (convenience) and therefore speaks more directly to them than other Ads.

google results for morning after pill near me

For Community Pharmacy, your USP might be safety and professional advice in-person. Or it might be that patients can collect immediately without waiting for delivery.

For patients who don’t want to leave their home, consider offering a video consultation.

Remember, this headline is solely about getting the click. Once the patient has clicked on your headline, this can link to a webpage with much more information. You don’t have to put everything about your service in the headline.

Promoting Your Service through Social Media Adverts (Paid)

Social Media (especially paid advertising through social media) is a great place to promote private services. Especially ones that people often delay treatment for, such as Erectile Dysfunction.

However, sensitivity is once again paramount.

Avoid profiling. Social Media sites terms and conditions prohibits negative profiling in social media copy.

You can restrict EHC marketing to women and ED to men – but you can’t specify your target audience using your copy – this is profiling.

Examples of Adverts that Meta (formerly Facebook) Will & Won’t Accept:

An example of unacceptable profiling in a Meta Ad:

Are you a young, nervous woman who needs the Morning After Pill?

Middle-aged and struggling with ED?

The phrasing of “young & nervous” makes the person reading the advert feel targeted. And whilst that’s acceptable for some forms of advertising, when it comes to sensitive subjects like EHC, ED & Weight Loss, it’s prohibited.

Also avoid words like “struggling” as it paints a negative light and Meta doesn’t want their users feeling negatively whilst using their Instagram & Facebook.

Example of acceptable Meta Ad copy:

Need professional, confidential advice about the Morning After Pill?

Get professional, medical support for ED and feel your best self!

 

Difficulties in advertising – don’t get banned

It’s becoming increasingly difficult for pharmacies to advertise online at all without LegitScript.

Companies like Meta & Google were previously pretty lax on advertising around medicine. But since the pandemic, with an increase in illegitimate drugs being sold online, their regulations are far stricter. Pharmacies have found themselves permanently banned from advertising for advertising in a way previously deemed fine.

Not sure if you need LegitScript Certification?

Talk to Pharmacy Mentor and we’ll discuss whether you need certification based on your advertising activity.

4. Providing Information & Guidance Online

As a pharmacist, you’re the most convenient source of trusted healthcare advice in your local community.

It’s this advice which is what direct online solutions cannot offer, and it’s what increases your market share, promoted correctly. One of the biggest concerns with emergency contraception, as an example, is safety. People feel reassured having a qualified professional in front of them telling them it’s safe.

google questions about ehc

However, giving guidance online is important. People typing in these questions in your local area finding you as the source of the answer means more patients. Younger people especially search for advice online before seeking it elsewhere. Creating content for your website around both EHC & ED means when your community searches these questions, you appear with answers.

Once they visit your site for the answers, you simply guide them towards your pharmacy for their treatment.

Whilst many pharmacy services are seasonal, Emergency contraception & Erectile Dysfunction demand is consistent through the year, meaning a stable source of revenue for your pharmacy.

google trends for marketing ehc & ed

5. A New Way to Serve Your Community

For Community Pharmacy, your competition, as usual, is Online Direct Suppliers, offering convenience (not having to leave the house) as their USP with same-day or next-day delivery.

With our Independent Prescribing Website Add-on, you can rival this service. Take orders, payments and approve online risk-assessment forms. This process saves you time by automating all the administrative processes, gives you an audit trail, and lets you focus on care.

After that, encouraging the patient to collect in the pharmacy is the best port-of-call, as you can then give them the advice they need with the meds. We even built a specific “Pay Now, Collect-In-Store” option for Community Pharmacy.

To request a Live Demo of this type of website in action, please use that link and get in touch.

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case study: novonordisk

About

Novo Nordisk is a leading Global healthcare company. They provide world-class weight management medicine such as Saxenda and the more recent Wegovy injection pens. There is a lot of regulation around this area of medicine, specifically regarding how to promote it. So Pharmacy Mentor worked together with Novo Nordisk, creating a webinar series and educating pharmacists on how they can market their weight management clinic effectively and ethically.

Challenges

  • Marketing for private weight management clinics needs appeal to prospective patients whilst also following regulations – a hard balance.
  • There is a lot of advertising and promotion in existence that breaches advertising regulations and so it’s extremely important to show pharmacists that there are guidelines.

How we did it

Pharmacy Mentor ran a Webinar “How to Market your Weight Management Service” which was commissioned and funded by Novo Nordisk.

We developed the content in conjunction with the Novo Nordisk team and delivered the webinar four times.

Limiting each session to 50 pharmacists meant more chances for attending pharmacists to ask questions at the end about their pharmacy’s specific situation.

The four sessions ran as live events delivered by our CEO, Saam Ali.

Results

Over 150 pharmacists registered and attended 1 of the 4 webinars, and feedback was overwhelmingly positive, with both the Novo Nordisk team and the attending pharmacists learning a lot and enjoying the session.

a testimonial from a pharmacist who attended the webinar

 

Want to start your digital journey with us? Simply get in touch with us and we’ll be glad to help.

The demand for a Covid-19 Vaccine will be sky-high. How do you market the Covid-19 vaccine as a pharmacy professionally and effectively?

How and when will Community Pharmacies be able to offer the Covid-19 vaccine?

The Covid-19 vaccine is getting its first major rollout in the UK. Community pharmacy is expected to play a part in the massive vaccination drive. However, because of the specific storage requirements of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines, it’s unlikely many will play a part initially, so it might be a while until you can market the Covid-19 Vaccine for your pharmacy.

If you think your pharmacy might be eligible to be a primary location for Covid-19 vaccinations, see this publication from the PSNC for guidance and requirements in becoming a vaccination site.

We won’t go into how to offer a Covid-19 vaccine in this article though, as that’s been covered plenty of times by the governing bodies in pharmacy.

What we’re going to cover is how to market the vaccine if you do end up offering it. The tips we’ll cover will both drive people to your Covid-19 vaccine service AND make your life easier.

  1. How to use Facebook, including setting up auto-replies and posting.
  2. Creating a dedicated COVID-19 vaccine page on your website
  3. Updating your Google Business Profile
  4. Advertising Your Service (without breaching policies)

1. How to use Facebook to generate awareness, build trust, and save you time

The vast majority of the UK will have Facebook profiles, and it’s a source of information that is widely shared. As a trusted healthcare provider, sharing accurate advice with links to the NHS or the UK Gov. site helps build trust in your community and keeps them aware of when they might be eligible for the vaccine.

 

example of a facebook health post for covid

An example of a Facebook post you should share with your community,

 

Every pharmacy gets those people who come in and want to ask you every question under the sun whilst 10 customers look at their watches in the queue behind them. Imagine being able to tell them that they can find all the information on your Facebook page, and if they still have any questions to send you a message on there. (More on this below!)

It is unclear at this early stage as to whether you will be allowed to promote a COVID-19 vaccine service on Facebook at all. During the pandemic, Facebook have been extremely strict on allowing any promotion of anything which claims to protect against COVID-19. Whether this changes with approved vaccinations remains to be seen. You should always check with your friendly neighbourhood Pharmacy Mentor before promoting via Facebook. We keep ourselves up-to-date with exactly what you are and aren’t allowed to promote on Facebook. You don’t want to end up with your Facebook page being banned.

auto replies on facebook to help manage covid-19 vaccine service

Auto-replies on Facebook

Set Up Auto-Replies on Your Messages Inbox

This useful trick is for busy pharmacists who don’t have time to answer messages on Facebook. It also gives a channel of communication for your patients who prefer using Facebook.

Think of all the common questions you get asked about services.

Is it free?

What are your opening hours?

Do I have to book? Etc, etc. 

We manage a lot of Pharmacy Pages, we know the types of questions people ask. It’s normally something they could Google, but prefer to stay on Facebook.

Instead of their message going into a black hole and making you look bad at responding, you can set up an automated response to Frequently Asked Questions.

You should always try to answer the question if possible. But you can also give them a call-to-action as well. Include links or phone numbers in this response, whatever your preference and tell them how to book or where to find out more information.

2. Create a dedicated Covid-19 Vaccine page on your website

 

example website page for covid-19 service

Example page for a client of ours

 

Your website is your online shop window, so make sure you or your developer updates it to reflect that you’re providing the Covid-19 vaccine service. As soon as the user lands on the site, they can’t miss it. Have one button which leads to a blog post/web page about the service for the patient to learn more, and one that jumps straight to a booking calendar link for people who want to jump straight in.

Pharmacies we worked with did similar things for Covid-19 PCR Testing.

The content of this dedicated page should make both yours and your patients’ lives easier. Set expectations. Give information. Answer Frequently Asked Questions.

All of this helps streamline your processes and create more revenue.

Screening & Risk Assessment Forms

Most clinical services have elements of risk, meaning patients often need screening for pre-existing health conditions or other factors that can present risks such as age or current medications. Most recently at the time of writing, people receiving the Covid-19 vaccine appear to be at risk if they have strong allergic reactions.

Rather than waiting for the patient to come all the way into the pharmacy, or you having to phone them, why not have a form on your website that they can fill in? It saves both parties time and hassle.

Let people book their Covid-19 Vaccine online with you

Another amazing time-saver for you, and more convenience for your customer, keeping your phone lines free and your vaccinations organised automatically. Adding a booking calendar to your website allows you to take bookings not only for Covid-19 Vaccines, but for any other service you offer like Flu Jabs.

If your customer is booking at any time when your pharmacy isn’t open, the ability to book online is critical for making sure their experience with you gets off to a good start.

You aren’t just competing with other pharmacies for convenience….people can book their hair appointments online nowadays. They expect you to provide this option, and it doesn’t give the best impression of you if you don’t.

It’s worth mentioning that for most other services, it’s also a huge advantage to allow people to pay for their service when they book it. For one, it’s another major convenience for them. But it’s also a really committing action. People are a lot less likely to call up and cancel appointments when they’ve paid for them.

3. Update your Google My Business

 

a google my business post showing the public helpful information about Covid-19 policies

Superb marketing tool

 

First things first, if you don’t already have a Google My Business profile, get one. For popular businesses like pharmacies they often get automatically generated. But if you’re not in charge of what’s on your profile, you don’t know what people are seeing when they find you online.

Presuming you’ve already got control of your account, for major pharmacy events like flu season and Covid-19, you want to make sure it’s updated so when people Google vaccines, they are reassured by your presence. Take the example above for Covid-19. People seeing this pharmacy are aware of the safety measures in place before attending. This lets your patient know what to expect and reassures them that you’re the right place to go.

If you’d like to set up your pharmacy on Google My Business, then you can take this quick course which will walk you through the whole process, step-by-step. Using instructional videos, the Drive Pharmacy Footfall with Google course will teach you how to use the tools within Google My Business to attract new customers.

4. Harness Google Ads and organic rankings

 

a range of google ads for covid-19 PCR tests

Be sure to check the Google Ads policies first

 

How do people who don’t know about your pharmacy find you? Heck, how does anyone find anything these days? Google, of course! (Other search engines are available.) Though being found on Google is pretty competitive.

How do you make sure you appear on Google when people are searching? Well, two ways really.

The easiest way is Google Ads

As shown in the image above. See how many ads show up before you even get a look-in with an organic page? The downside to Google Ads? Cost. The cost gets higher and higher the more competitive the search you’re trying to be top of is.

Note: It may not be possible to run Google Ads for the COVID Vaccine through your pharmacy due to the changing Google Ads policies.  Stay up to date today and seek our guidance if necessary.

If you’re willing to test for a return on investment, Google Ads is a fantastic way to help you get the thousands of visitors that flow through Google every day to your website.

The most sustainable way is optimising your web page for SEO

Remember that dedicated web page we talked about earlier? Well, optimised in the right way, Google shows your article to more people. If your optimised web page is top of Google, that’s like being one of those department stores at the entrance to a shopping mall. People have to go through you first every time. Unlike those department stores, you don’t have to pay a premium rent (that’s Google Ads). With an optimised web page, Google rewards you for giving it a super relevant and optimised page to show people by showing it to people first, for free.

Interested in seeing this in action for a pharmacy? Check out this in-depth look at getting found on Google. It’s a case study of using the power of Google to promote COVID-19 PCR tests for a pharmacy, back when no one else was really doing it.

Avoiding Facebook Advertising

We won’t go into this in too much detail, but Facebook’s Ads Policy, which you won’t (and that’s fine), prevents you from promoting almost everything to do with COVID-19 right now. Recently you couldn’t promote so much as a face mask without facing a suspension of your Ads account. But this may change in the future.

You should also avoid posting too much on your Facebook page about any COVID-19 service, as we have seen pharmacies have their entire pages banned for such activity. Again, this may change, and we’ll update this article if it does.

But for now, avoid Facebook for directly promoting the COVID-19 Vaccine.

 


Need help with promoting your pharmacy services? Simply get in touch.

PCR Test Pharmacy
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a massive period of uncertainty for pretty much everyone. But where there is chaos, there is also opportunity. In this particular case, for pharmacies, the opportunity was marketing PCR Tests.

The Opportunity

The demand for PCR tests quickly picked up when lockdown was lifted and people were allowed to travel again.

pcr test google trends

This graph shows the popularity of the search on Google over the past 12 months.

The Results

Pharmacy Mentor harnessed this demand for our clients who offered PCR testing. We also recommended that other pharmacies begin to offer PCR testing through their pharmacy as a result of the trend analysis. 

Here are the stats for one of them:

website statistics marketing pcr tests showing 89 thousand page views and 28 thousand new users

Off the wall statistics for an independent pharmacy website.

This reads like a marketing symphony. Imagine for a second that this was a physical pharmacy…

  • New users: – 28,702 people have walked into your pharmacy off the street. 28,702 people.
  • Sessions: – Those people came into the pharmacy on average 1.54 times.
  • Page Views: – Of the 90k page views, the consultation form page had 18.5k views. So, of those 28,000 people who walked into your pharmacy to ask about PCR tests, 18,500 signed up for a consultation.

Good Problems

It’s really been a bit of a problem. Because it’s not easy to cope with such demand.

Fortunately, the fact we have Telegram & WhatsApp support for our clients means they get instant support whenever they need it. And this did need quite a bit of support!

A separate phone-line and email had to be created for PCR requests and all other requests on their website. Fortunately, having created their website too, so we could do this immediately.

On-site consultations needed to become online consultations to make room for flu jab appointments. I’ll say that again. To make room for flu jab appointments. The pharmacy was wall-to-wall booked with PCR consultations.

Then online consultations booked up. We had to turn the form off temporarily because there was too much demand and people couldn’t book appointments.

We’ve had to evolve the website to be able to accept online payments to streamline the money coming into the business. Not a bad problem to have.

“Please help, I have so many calls and requests per day, I can’t process it all.” At its peak, marketing PCR tests was making this pharmacy £5k/day.

How we did it

You’ll likely want to understand how this happens, to get similar results for your pharmacy.

Two words. Keyword Optimisation.

Understanding how Google works, we created and optimised two articles for their website (yes, you need a website for this to work). Our keyword research found the terms that people mostly used to search. We published each article – making it both user-friendly (easy to read, easy to use) and Google-friendly (clearly optimised for keywords and formatted well).

A couple of weeks later, due to the lack of competition, the articles topped Google for the relevant keywords, beating the Government websites.

We created a digital form on the site for people to fill in so they could book everything online, as well as a payment mechanism. Two reasons for this:

  1. It’s easier for you as a pharmacist to manage.
  2. It’s better for the customer/patient – because when people are searching the internet:
  • They aren’t always in a position to pick up the phone
  • Phone lines might be busy
  • Your pharmacy might be closed when they’re searching for the service (in the evening!)

You lose customers by not allowing them to do everything online.

Able to act with our finger on the pulse

There was obviously the matter of timing, too. That’s why we’re the perfect healthcare partner. We know the heartbeat of healthcare when it comes to marketing throughout the year.

Overall, the investment on this project from the pharmacy was around £500. This resulted in making £1,000’s/day.

When the opportunity knocked, we answered.

Our monthly marketing packs give you access to what is essentially a remote marketing department. With constant dialogues from our team, you’ve got instant access to the trends and the tactics that maximise impact – from those trends, for your pharmacy.

PCR testing is an exceptional bubble, for sure. If you do offer PCR tests, get in touch now because we can maximise your impact.

But this strategy works for all the PGDs and on-site services you offer, as well as eCommerce. There’s a massive vacuum on Google in the world of healthcare. Waiting for pharmacies like yours to fill it – and fulfil the demand of all the thousands of searches happening every day.

Looking for help in marketing your services better and building an online presence? Please get in touch with us. We’ll be glad to help.