CVS investing in dental services to compete with e-commerce giants (Orthodontists aren’t smiling about it)
Amazon has long been dominating the digital shoppersphere, causing many an established company to panic. Business owners are scrabbling to find new and innovative ways to attract and retain new customers in the hopes that they can compete. Just as all of the other search engines have to contend with the reflex response: “Hold on a moment, I’ll Google it;” retailers have to try and overcome: “You’ll definitely be able to buy it on Amazon.”
The fact is, as consumers, we like to keep things simple. That’s why mall complexes have always been so popular; the ability to do all of your shopping under one roof and then stop for a spot of lunch or a coffee is better than having to drive all over town. We like the convenience of it, and what could be more convenient than logging onto one incredibly easy to use website that sells everything that you could possibly ask for? That’s the keyword today: convenience.
That is why in 2018, CVS Health made the decision to start offering delivery services on prescription drugs & other medication; in an attempt to keep up with the delivery giant, Amazon. This experimentation is continuing on into 2019, with a new transformation that has been causing quite a lot of controversy in the dental world.
I’ll give you something to smile about
The likes of CVS and Walgreens are now turning to offering services in stores in order to compete with other e-commerce giants. They’re certainly not the first to adopt this kind of approach. Take Nike for example: they’re embracing the bricks & mortar by attempting to revolutionize the way that retail works through implementing state-of-the-art technology in their stores. (Include link to previous Nike blog post) By offering a more personal service in their physical stores, they will be able to connect with their audience and drive more traffic through their business both physically & electronically.
So, how does this apply to CVS and Walgreens? Well, rather than simply sticking to pharmaceuticals and other medical supplies, they will now be offering dental services in stores. Such services include discreet teeth straightening, a service which would otherwise only be available via your local orthodontist. As you can imagine, these new plans have not been so well received by orthodontists as their “bread & butter” services are going to be made more accessible, and likely more affordable too.
Meeting high-demand and adapting with the times
Whilst orthodontists are certainly going to experience a significant hit with the likes of CVS and Walgreens offering similar services in their stores, if they embrace the challenge and find new ways to make their services more attractive, they shouldn’t be too hard pushed to survive. They must innovate, just like CVS and Walgreens have had to.
The fact is, in this modern-Instaworthy world, everyone is after that straight, white smile. As such, the global dentist’s market is set to increase to a whopping $18.4 billion by 2025. Teeth whitening alone is a $5.5 billion industry as it is. CVS and Walgreens have recognized this and made the incredibly shrewd decision to offer such services in a most personalized and convenient manner. This is the future: ease, convenience, and affordability.
It’s not just scary, but expensive too!
Another important thing to recognize is that many people shy away from going to the dentist because they’re afraid. It’s not just about the bill that they’ll get at the end of the interaction, but the fear of going in in the first place. Now, with CVS Health, an established and trusted brand, we’re likely to see a significant rise in people seeking out dental care. As they’ve said in a recent statement: “CVS Health and SmileDirectClub are aligned in the mission to put the customer at the center of their care by providing easier access to more affordable, more convenient health solutions with proven outcomes.”