The United States healthcare industry employs 20 million people, the largest sector in the country. Add in an aging population and it’s no wonder the industry shows no signs of shrinking. In fact, five of the fastest 10 growing jobs in the United States fall under the umbrella of the healthcare industry. With the industry already massive along with the projected growth, it’s no surprise that the medical apparel business is also booming.
The 10 billion dollar medical apparel industry (in America alone) has been ripe for change for some time. Consider the scrubs that healthcare professionals wear – they all seem the same. While a medical facility might like their employees to wear a uniform so that patients/customers can easily identify workers, those uniforms can be individualized and improved.
Making Scrubs Attractive
A few years back, two medical apparel companies burst onto the scene: Figs and Jaanuu. The two companies make the same essential promise and that is to improve scrubs and make the shapeless, scratchy, and dull medical apparel a thing of the past. The two have clearly struck a chord as they have drawn investors and raised millions of dollars.
People want clothes that fit them and help them look their best. The two companies are promising that and more. Descriptions of the scrubs include innovative, comfortable and functional, fashionable, and stylish. They come in a wide variety of colors and fit in an appealing way. In addition, the scrubs have anti-microbial technology and feature wrinkle-free and stain-repellent fabrics with.
There’s a reasoning behind the redesigned better fitting and more attractive scrubs that Figs and Jaanuu and others are producing. When people are in clothes which make them feel good about themselves, the belief is they will feel more pride in themselves and the work they are doing. This translates to people being more productive and doing a better job at their required tasks. Another positive is that the better fitting scrubs will enable health care professionals to be more comfortable and less distracted.
While the two start-ups are making a mark in the industry, they are not alone. The big boy on the block is Strategic Partners which according to a 2017 Bloomberg article controls approximately 40% of the scrubs market. As the largest player in the market and one that has been around longer, Strategic has both positives and negatives.
In general, entrenched companies struggle with change and are often less innovative. They tend to have patterns and formulas that have worked and don’t see a reason to change, sometimes till it’s too late. On the other hand, they have established name recognition and loyal customers. They also have the facilities such as warehousing, supply chains, and distribution centers, etc. – in place to fill massive orders.
Utilizing Technology to Compete
These days, technology can help newer companies such as Jaanuu and Figs compete with the top industry players. The two medical apparel suppliers use their own online store, Amazon eCommerce, and digital marketing. When either B2B or B2C eCommerce companies have their own online store, they can more easily manage supply and maintain lesser amounts of inventory. Since companies like Jaanuu and Figs are not overwhelmed by mountains of particular items, they are able to be more creative, offer a wider range of stock, and even customize the material.
Jaanu and Figs bill themselves as higher end medical apparel. This aspiration and pitch brings about enhanced expectations from customers in regards to service. Speedy delivery, a forgiving return policy, and a knowledgeable and helpful staff are a minimum. With their own online store, Jaanu and Figs have a leg up as they aim to maintain this type of service.
The most important factor in determining the success or failure of an online store is visitation. If a company is not driving traffic to their website, nothing else matters. Like many other companies, Jaanu and Figs utilize Amazon eCommerce. Simply using them helps sites get found. Plus with Amazon being ubiquitous, it has gained the trust of consumers. Amazon eCommerce includes a checkout option which means customers can use their existing Amazon account leading to a speedier transaction. There’s no need for a new merchant account or to have separate shopping cart software. Each of these features adds convenience
Digital marketing also allows smaller and or newer companies, like Figs and Jaanu to compete with bigger more established entities.
Even a very reasonable budget can enable the newbie or smaller company to reach a large, significant, or even niche audience. That budget may be spent via social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, etc, where the costs for promotion are minimal. Perhaps a company will blog on its own website or send out a series of emails to potential (or past or current) customers which again includes minimal costs. A company that is willing and able to think in creative ways can reach their customers in countless ways that do not cost an exorbitant amount of money.
Reaching the desired customer means understanding them. Where do they spend his/her time on line? What draws them to your merchandise? What issues is she/he dealing with that your product can answer? Knowing the answers to these and other questions can help companies, such as Jaanu and Figs, create a marketing campaign that enables them to reach their target audience.
Uniform Market is the most used platform by the top medical apparel companies for both B2B and B2C companies. One of the reasons Uniform Market is favored by the top medical apparel companies, rather than generic e-commerce platforms such as Shopify, Magento, or Wix, is because it includes industry specific ecommerce features. Medical apparel companies can choose from existing templates, design their own store or Uniform Market can design a custom store. A wide variety of features, including a host of checkout methods and shipping options, make it easy for both for both B2B and B2C medical apparel companies to run an ecommerce site that will delight customers.
If you are a B2B or B2C medical apparel company, it’s an exciting time as the market is thriving. No matter the size or experience of your company, if you are creating high quality scrubs such as Jaanu or Fig, you can utilize an ecommerce platform and compete with anyone. Uniform Market can create a platform for your company that will wow your customers and allow you to keep your focus on making sure they keep coming back.