Why HME/DME Manufacturers Are Loving Health Mobius
Health Mobius has seen tremendous excitement and support from manufacturers in the HME/DME space. Think about it. If you’re a manufacturer of compression garments, for example, you probably spend an enormous amount of time working with a provider to get them to sell your product in their retail location. A manufacturer rep works hard and finally gets a few styles of garments in three colors up on a shelf in a pharmacy. Nice to be in business but the fact is that same manufactures usually sells thousands of different SKUs that will not make it on a shelf. Retail stores only have so much space as it is.
Now, think about it from the patient standpoint. If a patient visits a store and the compression garments available on the shelves are not the styles, color, or compression strength that they need, they likely will leave the store and make a purchase elsewhere, usually Amazon or another online retailer.
What we’ve been able to do is take that same compression garment manufacturer’s entire catalog and make it available for providers to sell online.
Now, when to patient comes into that store, if it’s available on the shelf they buy it but if it’s not available on the shelf, now that provider has a kiosk or tablet in the store. The store’s customer service representative can walk the customer through the buying process, place the order, and the item will ship directly to the patient.
What This Means For HME & DME Manufacturers
So, what we’ve done for the manufacturer is we’ve said “You work really hard to get these seven or eight or ten SKUs into the store. We’re the vehicle for you to bring in all the rest. We’ve raised the bar for what a buying group should be. This is what a buying group should be.
In today’s day and age with technology the way it is, as a buying group, it’s not enough to simply say “Give us a royalty and give our members a discount code, and we’ll let our members know they can shop with you directly. That’s not good enough anymore.
Now, being able to not only offer a manufacturer access to your members, but to do it in a way where the manufacturer doesn’t have to increase bandwidth to accommodate the influx of customer activity, while still maintaining control of the product data, and protecting your brand’s integrity is the new standard for buying groups.
This was the reason why we got into this business in the first place. We were frustrated with visiting trade shows in this industry where the message to the providers was ‘You need to get into e-commerce” and “You need to make it easier for your patients to buy products” and “You need to sell more retail items.” The most frustrating part of for me was that nobody was handing these people the tools to be able to do that until now.
As an industry that’s been around since long before the internet, we are all trying to figure it out on our own, just how to become individual e-commerce giants. We’re trying to teach ourselves retail merchandising, where we’ve never been in that business before. We’re trying to teach ourselves how to do online customer service and operate chat bots everything else. And my position is that while some people want to grow their own food and fish for themselves, other people want a service provider and we’re that service provider.