Sales Channels Transform During the PandemicBy Miriam Bello | Mon, 09/20/2021 - 09:30
Q: How did the pandemic affect GoFarma’s operations and market share?
AJ: During the pandemic, some people wanted to be careful. They avoided going to the pharmacy and preferred to have their medicines delivered at home. As a result, demand increased but so did competition because traditional pharmacies started to implement phone apps and deliveries. Demand also changed during the pandemic, with some products attracting greater demand and others less. In general terms, our sales figures grew during the pandemic.
Q: Considering the growing competition, what makes GoFarma the best available option?
GH: Our focus has been on home delivery since we began this business, long before the pandemic. The outbreak did not cause any big changes to our business model and we have significant experience in what we do. We also took advantage of GoFarma’s good reputation. Clients usually use their judgement to avoid unnecessary risks to their health and prefer to make their purchases from pharmacies they trust.
AJ: Our expertise is reflected in our customer service, medicines, delivery and shipping costs. We were ready before the pandemic, which meant we did not need to change much to adapt. Our most important competitive advantages are our reasonable prices and quality customer service. While our number of competitors increased during the pandemic, GoFarma remained well positioned thanks to our experience.
Q: How have client preferences regarding communication channels changed during the last year?
AJ: Preferences have been gradually changing as more clients started to buy through our webpage and app. However, over half of them continue to place their orders over the phone. This is because the population segment that usually requires more medicines — seniors — normally prefer traditional purchasing channels. Nevertheless, the pandemic restrictions forced many people to get more acquainted with their devices and accelerated technological growth. We’ve noticed that some clients who used to make phone calls have migrated on their own to our webpage and app. Our online sales doubled in the past year and they continue to grow exponentially. There is still a long way to go in the Mexican digital industry but we are certainly progressing.
A: How did the pandemic affect the sales performance of your products?
AJ: Unexpectedly, certain medicines became scarce but we maintained our business model of providing competitive prices. We may have lost some sales due to the medicine shortage that the entire country suffered but new medicines became popular and increased in demand.
GH: Medicines like ivermectin and azithromycin, which were very seldomly requested before the pandemic hit, suddenly became very popular and we had to restrict their sale. We limited the number of units per client to avoid self-medication unless the client had a doctor’s prescription.
Q: What are GoFarma’s expansion plans?
AJ: We plan to expand to another city in the near future to take our service to different markets in Mexico. We began shipping to the entire country this year. In this case, we do not offer the traditional immediate delivery we provide in Nuevo Leon. People from across the country who order through our webpage usually do so because they could not find the medication they were looking for anywhere else, which is common in the industry.
Q: What makes GoFarma en tu empresa different from the traditional service and what does it offer to its clients?
GH: GoFarma en tu empresa is a B2B service focused on companies looking to supply their infirmaries or maybe buy first aid kits for their offices. In these cases, we offer credit and price quotes adapted to our clients’ needs.
AJ: We also offer wholesale prices. We have many companies in our portfolio, which are attracted by our wholesale prices and quick deliveries. Usually, our clients receive their products the next day and always with the quality they expect. They can also put in urgent requests for medications, which we will deliver immediately.
GoFarma is an online and multichannel platform that provides medications through home delivery. Its portfolio includes patented medications, generics and OTCs.