This story was delivered to Insider Intelligence Digital Health Briefing subscribers earlier this morning.Insider Intelligence publishes hundreds of insights, charts, and forecasts on the Digital Health industry with the Digital Health Briefing. You can learn more about subscribing here.The retail pharmacy giant is expanding on its cloud partnership with Microsoft and striking a deal with Adobe to personalize its customers’ pharmacy, immunization, and retail experiences online, per Forbes. Walgreens is launching tailored prescription experiences for patients with new digital tools to create a more personalized experience and up customer engagement: For example, the pharmacy can alert a customer of an available prescription when they’re inside the drugstore to avoid an unnecessary second trip.
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Walgreens’ earnings dropped off this year — but investing in tech to streamline the healthcare experience and boost customer engagement should help it attract and retain convenience-hungry customers. The drugstore giant witnessed dwindling earnings over the past few years, with a 14% decline in its net income margin from 2017 to 2019.This year, it experienced a brief surge in sales in early March amid the pandemic, but fell back into a decline as consumers remained indoors — and out of its stores. However, it’s leveraged its partnership with Microsoft to help drive up consumer business: For example, Walgreens expanded its telehealth platform in April to include a Microsoft-powered coronavirus screening bot in an effort to bolster customer engagement on its Find Care app — which saw visits increase by 40% in Q2 2020. So, it’s no surprise the retail pharmacy behemoth plans to keep investing in new tech tools to attract customers.And we think its Adobe-powered digital platform will bode well with a majority of US patients (51%) who peg convenience of care as an important factor in their healthcare decision-making process. Placing an emphasis on a strong digital experience should also help Walgreens offset its slower foot traffic amid the pandemic by reeling in customers to use its other services — like online retail, for instance. Walgreens’ new personalized platforms should help it level off with competitors Walmart and CVS — both of which have recently expanded their digital healthcare services. Walmart recently acquired startup CareZone’s prescription management platform to enhance its affordable primary care services. And CVS Health began working with both self-driving startup Nuro and DoorDash to respectively test prescription and non-prescription medication delivery amid the pandemic.We think these moves signal that retail pharmacy giants are forging ahead with digital transformation and partnerships with tech firms to remain competitive — or risk losing out to massive, tech-savvy entrants with substantial consumer bases, like Amazon’s PillPack.Want to read more stories like this one? Here’s how you can gain access:Join other Insider Intelligence clients who receive this Briefing, along with other Digital Health forecasts, briefings, charts, and research reports to their inboxes each day.>>Become a ClientExplore related topics more in depth.>>Browse Our CoverageAre you a current Insider Intelligence client? Log in here.