Published: September 2022 | Report Code: 12288 | Available Format: PDF | Pages: 109
The global online pharmacy market size stood at $68,382.3 million in 2021, which is expected to reach $261,684.5 million by 2030, advancing at a CAGR of 16.1% during 2021–2030. This is ascribed to the rising number of internet users, widening access to online services, and the surging use of e-prescriptions in hospitals and other healthcare settings.
Furthermore, the increase in teleconsultation and diagnostic support drives the e-pharmacy market growth. Over the years, healthcare facilities for the management of chronic diseases have been the hallmark of medical care. However, since the introduction of telehealth/teleconsultation, treatment pathways have changed all over the world. Nowadays, e-prescriptions can be generated through remote consultation, which can be used to purchase drugs through online pharmacies. This has led to savings in patients' time and an increase in the efficiency of healthcare providers.
Further, there is the active involvement of companies integrating their electronic health record (EHR) platforms with telehealth, which further boosts the market growth. The shortage of healthcare professionals in some regions is prompting the adoption of telehealth services. For instance, the U.S. would witness an estimated shortage of 37,800–124,000 physicians by 2034, including shortfalls in both primary and specialty care.
Furthermore, due to the unavailability of certain medications in retail pharmacy stores, a large patient pool worldwide prefers to order them online and have them home-delivered. Furthermore, e-pharmacies reduce chronically ill patients' and elderly citizens' reliance on third parties to obtain medicines and healthcare supplies.
The market for online healthcare and nutrition products is expected to progress with the highest CAGR, of around 17%, during the forecast period. This is on account of the rising awareness of nutritional products, and the augment in the sales of these products in recent years, mainly during the pandemic time. As per the study, more than 50% of U.S. consumers order health wellness and nutritional products through online channels, and this trend is going to follow in the coming years.
Whereas, the medications category held the largest share, of approximately 75%, in 2021, on account of the surge in the sales of OTC as well as prescription medications. For instance, CVS Health recorded a 1,000% increase in the sales of online prescription drugs during the pandemic.
Market Size in 2021
Revenue Forecast in 2030
Market Trends, Drivers, and Restraints; Revenue Estimation and Forecast; Segmentation Analysis; Regulatory Scenario; Impact of COVID-19; Companies’ Strategic Developments; Market Share Analysis of Key Players; Company Profiling
By Platform Type, By Product Type, By Region
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Online pharmacy products sold through app-based platforms were valued at around $40 billion in 2021. The increase in mobile usage and internet penetration, and the rise in the number of people conducting online transactions have raised the demand for online drugs through app-based platforms in recent years. For instance, there were around 106 mobile cellular subscriptions (per 100 people) in 2020, all over the world.
Moreover, the rapid growth in the e-commerce sector has driven e-pharmacies around the world to offer doorstep delivery. For instance, the e-commerce industry witnessed a dramatic increase in its share of all retail sales, from 16% in 2019 to 19% in 2020. The expanding reach of e-commerce has allowed e-pharmacies to gain a large customer base in both developed and developing countries.
In recent times, Mobile health (mHealth) is changing the paradigm of the online pharmacy market through its highly efficient assistance to both healthcare professionals and patients. In addition, mobile application usage is intensifying the role of mHealth in the market growth through several benefits such as its adequate assistance to pharmacists, tracking of patient disease history, and the calculation of individual drug doses. In addition, mHealth converts smartphones into point-of-care diagnostic tools to monitor blood pressure, which is gaining significant attraction amongst consumers.
In 2021, North America held the majority revenue share, more than 40%, in the market. This is mainly driven by the high internet penetration and increased awareness regarding online OTC drugs. For instance, around 90% of the North American population uses the internet.
Moreover, the incidence of chronic diseases in the U.S. and Canada is increasing rapidly. Six out of ten adults in the U.S. are suffering from a chronic disease. The U.S. healthcare system spends around $4.0 trillion annually, which is paving the way for the development of online pharmacies in the region. In addition, the rising pharmaceutical drug sales in the region also intensifies the market growth. For instance, in 2020, North America held around 50% of total world pharmaceutical sales.
Whereas, the APAC market is expected to register the highest CAGR, of around 17%, in the forecast period. Countries like China, Japan, and India together hold more than 60% of the online pharmacy market share in the region, owing to the increase in government regulations, the emergence of the e-commerce sector, and spur in the launch of various e-pharmacy stores. For instance, in August 2020, Amazon launched the Amazon Pharmacy in India, which lets customers purchase prescription-based medicines as well as OTC drugs through online mode.
In addition, the spur in the initiative taken by governments as well as private entities toward e-pharmacy also drives the regional market growth. For instance, in August 2020, Reliance Retail Limited acquired around 60% stakes in Netmeds Marketplace Ltd. to enhance the affordability of superior quality healthcare products to consumers through online mode.
The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the e-pharmacy market, due to the increase in consumer preference for online purchase of drugs coupled with social distancing norms, and the emergence of various online pharmacies. Moreover, the additional benefits offered by various e-pharmacies also shifted consumers toward the online purchase of drugs. For instance, in May 2021, CVS Pharmacy, a retail division of CVS Health, announced an upgrade to its CarePass membership program, with prescription delivery within hours. Additionally, the company exempted the delivery charges for CarePass members with an eligible prescription.
Further, the online sales of various healthcare items, such as face masks, hand sanitizers, antibacterial creams, and drugs, also burgeoned during the pandemic. For instance, there was a more than 600% spike in the sales of hand sanitizers from 2019 to 2020 in Canada, which resulted in a sudden increase in the market growth.
Key players in the market have been taking concrete measures to increase their market share, strengthen their product portfolio, and improve their value proposition. For instance:
The report offers comprehensive market segmentation analysis along with market estimation for the period 2017–2030.
Based on Platform Type
Based on Product Type
In 2030, the market for online pharmacies will value $261,684.5 million.
The online pharmacy industry witnesses the higher sale of OTC drugs.
The COVID-19 impact on the market for online pharmacies was positive.
The North American online pharmacy industry is the largest because of the high prevalence of chronic diseases and access to the internet here.
Players in the market for online pharmacies are expanding their digital platforms to offer many more services than just drugs and medical devices.
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