Image and potential of online pharmacies

The reputation of online pharmacies and drug mail order businesses is not globally equal. On comparing the US with Germany, for example, you will notice significant differences.

While in the US the FDA as well as renowned non-profit organizations warn of illegal online pharmacies that sell medications of dubious origin, in other countries, such as Germany, online pharmacies enjoy a very positive reputation*. Nevertheless, we are focusing on the results of the US respondents in the following.

Although in-store sales still taking the leading spot when it comes to sales in general, they come in second when focusing on the compound annual growth rate (CAGR). Speaking in numbers and focusing on the period from 2010 to 2017, we are facing a CAGR of 13 percent for online sales while the CAGR for in-store sales is at 3 percent for the same period of time.
One reason for the difference in sales is the share of persons that have not purchased drugs online yet. An interesting point even for the online-pharmacies-supporters, since 30 percent, out of the 74 percent that have not purchased pharmacies online yet, could imagine doing so.

But what are the advantages when choosing online pharmacies over in-store sales? For most of the consumers the flexibility comes in handy. Besides the advantage in price, for most of the respondents having the items delivered right to their door and being able to order 24/7 are the most important aspects.
*Statista Consumer Survey 2017 e-Commerce and Retail




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As of March 2018