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Customer Feedback on Loyalty Program Best Practices

A new study by Maritz Motivation Solutions dispels some of the assumptions that many retailers held about consumer loyalty programs. With data gathered from surveying 2,000 consumers, Maritz was able to disprove four myths retailers have about their consumers and loyalty programs.

  • Myth #1: Consumers don’t want to pay to join loyalty programs. The survey found that 52 percent of respondents would not be willing to pay to join a loyalty program, but the remaining 48 percent would be willing. The fee paid for annual membership can offset the costs of running the loyalty program.
  • Myth #2. Convincing customers to join a loyalty program is the same as engaging them. Program enrollment is only a minimal level of commitment. The best time to capture member engagement is within the first six months of membership through aggressive communication and by making rewards attainable.
  • Myth #3. Members of loyalty programs are concerned with redemption only. Data from the survey shows that this is not necessarily a correct assumption. It’s recommended that retailers balance reward messages with opportunities to earn points. Loyalty members also appreciate tools that allow them to track their earnings progress.
  • Myth #4. Members of loyalty programs remain loyal. All retailers should be remember that all members are at constant risk of changing their loyalty. To retain high-value members, planning surprise rewards can be a good strategy.

The survey found that 43 percent of consumers join a loyalty program because they want to earn rewards. Sixty percent of consumers feel that the reason why companies maintain loyalty programs is to entice them to buy more from them. Consumers don’t fully realize that companies actually want a relationship with them. This study suggests that companies have an opportunity to engage more in the relationship side of loyalty with their program members.

Independent Pharmacies Staying Competitive

After decades of the number of independent pharmacies shrinking due to closures and buyouts, they are now making a comeback. This is no small feat. Larger pharmacies often have an advantage over the independents because they contract with insurers to handle prescription plans for their health plans through larger PBMs. But despite this advantage, the number of independent pharmacies has been increasing by almost 3 percent each year.

Part of the resurgence could be because of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. More people have insurance, so they are able to afford prescription medications. Perhaps the most important advantage that an independent pharmacy has over its larger competitors is that they are capable of giving more personalized service to their customers.

For some, developing niches that align with old-fashioned service has been a way to keep people coming back. By offering services such as specialized multi-dose packaging, home delivery or carrying medical devices and home healthcare equipment, independent pharmacies are providing a valuable service to their customers. Read more about how independent pharmacies are staying competitive here.

No matter the size of your pharmacy business, AlphaScrip’s proven partnerships support major chains and independent pharmacies.

Tips for Reducing Pharmacy Wait Times

Wait times are a major concern for medical facilities and pharmacies alike. People who need treatment don’t like waiting, after all, and it’s in the pharmacy’s best interest to improve the customer experience. Here are some of the latest tips for cutting wait time and ensuring customers are able to receive their prescriptions faster.

Standardized Process

If you operate in multiple locations, having standardized processes, procedures and computer programs saves a lot of time and frustration, both for pharmacists who may work shifts in multiple stores and for the customers.

Proper Labeling

Labeling a bottle so it doesn’t cover the barcode saves time; yes, just a little bit of time, but multiply that by all the prescriptions you process, and the savings add up.

Automated Counts

For commonly prescribed medications, automating counts can save a ton of time. You still have to double-check manually, but automation cuts down the time it takes to count individual pills and may even improve accuracy.

Managing Stock

Keep inventory organized and up-to-date, making sure to order medications and supplies well before you run out.

Timing of Refills

There’s definitely a balance to strike between the convenience of automatic refills and the inconvenience of having to re-shelve medications that patients never pick up. Whether you send notifications to customers regarding their prescription status, or wait to fill prescriptions on demand, assess how your current practices affect efficiency and customer satisfaction.

Transparency

When you do have a wait time, letting your customers know makes a world of difference. Apologizing for a wait has also been shown to increase patient satisfaction in clinical settings, and the same principle applies in pharmacies.