The First E-Shop in The French-Speaking Swiss Pharmaceutical Sector

Vifor Pharma is a global pioneer in the development, manufacture, and marketing of iron deficiency pharmaceuticals.

Health care providers, hospitals, and wholesalers could only order products by phone, e-mail, or fax until recently. In May 2017, Vifor Pharma decided to provide a new communication channel for its consumers by launching an e-commerce website, providing an additional chance for contact.

Vifor Pharma

An e-commerce website to meet the needs of customers and for more simplicity 

"Most of our customers order Vifor products by phone or by fax… We just wanted to offer them a new solution, which is simpler and quicker," says Pascal Schumacher, Marketing Manager at Vifor Pharma.

"As individuals, we are using e-commerce websites more and more often. So why not in the professional world as well?
Indeed, it is proving to be a logical solution for our customers now. The project was therefore to create a website, which enables them to order products 24/7 and thus optimize our processes and our logistics," he explains.

The company also wanted to be able to communicate differently with its customers.
"We didn't want just an e-shop. We wanted to be able to interact with our customers by offering them information on recently published studies, professional training, and appointments with pharmaceutical sales representatives was a crucial issue. " adds Pascal Schumacher.

Vifor Pharma - SQLI: a winning collaboration 

"To assist us with these projects, SQLI Switzerland gave us the solution which would be best suited to our organisation and our constraints. Would we be active on the project? How would we be involved? Were we going to have to produce anything?
In addition, the SQLI teams perfectly understood our customers' issues: to have a sleek-looking and modern e-commerce website, with a responsive design, running on all types of mobile devices, and offering a simple and efficient ordering process, " explains Pascal Schumacher.

From a technological standpoint, the Magento content management system is the ideal fit for Vifor Pharma's project due to its ability to manage tens of thousands of products. 

"We had high expectations in regards to the UX Design. Our customers are doctors, wholesalers and hospital pharmacists. It was therefore essential that the e-shop website easily displays the product sought, its patient description, etc. Few steps, reduce clicks to a minimum, pragmatism and speed!" says the Vifor Pharma Business Unit Director.

A revolution in a successful sector

Since January 2018, the Vifor Pharma e-commerce website has been up and running. Vifor Pharma initiated a marketing effort to tell its clients about the new ordering channel at this time. The first orders have arrived, and the response has been overwhelmingly good. 

Vifor Pharma is the first company in Switzerland to offer an e-commerce website in the medical sector. 

"We may have shaken up the well-ingrained habits of our doctor and pharmacist customers, but this new e-shop has been well received. They perfectly understood what benefits they could get from this website: less time-consuming operations, and quicker and simpler ordering," concludes Pascal Schumacher.