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The Biggest Opportunities with the Release of the Bose and Walgreens’ Hearing Aids

The hearing industry is abuzz with the latest news – Bose and Walgreens have jumped into the ring to be the newest hearing aid manufacturers. And while they are just starting to sell hearing aids to select states, their sales are online, and Walgreens is also selling in-stores.

Here is a brief run-down of their hearing aids:

Lexie Lumen Hearing Aids at Walgreens 

*Will be available for sale in hundreds of Walgreens stores in Arizona, Colorado, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.

Their Lexie hearing aid advertises:

  • Directional hearing (microphones that amplify sounds while canceling out others).
  • Adaptive noise reduction.
  • Autofit technology (through an algorithm that customizes devices to a specific hearing profile).
  • Telecoil technology that captures speech for speaking on the phone or when in public places.
  • Crisp phone calls and crystal clear sound.
  • Advanced battery power and easy to replace batteries.
  • Sweat proof technology.

Lexie Lumen hearing aids are available for purchase in-store as well as on walgreens.com and Walgreens Find Care.  

SoundControl™ Hearing Aids by Bose 

*Currently available in Massachusetts, Montana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. 

Bose SoundControl™ Hearing Aids are available for purchase online. 

The SoundControl™ hearing aid advertises:

  • Hearing enhancement for mild to moderate hearing loss.
  • Clinically proven self-tuning, so the user can amplify the sounds they want to hear.
  • A comfortable, discreet fit.
  • Self-fit design.
  • High-quality audio.
  • Comprehensive world-class support.
  • Replaceable batteries.

The SoundControl™ hearing aid also has a 90-day risk-free trial.

The Biggest Opportunities to Come from the Release of These Hearing Aids

  1. According to the Cochlear Center for Hearing and Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, 38 million Americans have a hearing loss significant enough to interfere with daily communication. Of those people, only 14% currently wear hearing aids. There are millions of people who could benefit from hearing aids, and when OTC hearing aids are finally hitting the market, you can be ready to sell hearing aids through your practice’s website. This is a huge opportunity to cast a wider net, engage patients early in their hearing health journey, and capture more revenue.
  2. It is no secret that most hearing aid users are 70 years of age and generally have a moderate or severe hearing impairment. This type of patient is typically not interested in navigating hearing aids alone and rely on the expertise of a hearing professional. This group may seek more affordable options (like those mentioned above) but they will not stray from the professional support that is required.
  3. Accessible delivery options such as telehealth and e-commerce offer easy usability for the more modern patient. They will be the ones who prefer unbundled practices and ask about hearing aids from big box retailers. Now this patient group will be technologically savvy but able to afford the new hearing aid releases. You can easily adapt and customize your business practices to accommodate this patient to capture their business by incorporating telehealth and e-commerce into your regular business practices.

How You Can Use OTC Hearing Aids To Your Benefit

Assess your Business Model

Do you bundle your services, or have you unbundled them? Yes, there are pros and cons for both options, but selling OTC hearing aids can be used as a gateway to higher technology.

Set Up an E-Commerce Store

You may think you still have time to prepare for over-the-counter hearing aids, but the reality is, companies are already selling hearing aids online. And while you may not be able to sell OTC hearing aids right this minute, you can sell hearing-related products and tools now. Plus, you will be ready for when you can sell OTC hearing aids when they are formally FDA-approved.

Boost Your Online Presence

If patients can’t find you, they can’t buy from you. By increasing your online visibility, you enable more patients to connect with your business, and not your competitors.

  • Establish a Lead Funnel – SEO and PPC
  • Make a Good Impression – Website
  • Keep Them Engaged – Social Medial, Blogs, Continuous Management

And Audiology Plus has a ready-made e-commerce platform specifically for hearing care professionals who want to start selling products NOW. 

With .Shop, you will open new revenue streams, serve more patients, and increase profitability. Schedule a demo today to see for yourself. 

E-Commerce in the Pandemic

How the Pandemic Created and Continues to Create Explosive Growth in E-Commerce

Now that it has been over a year since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, it might be starting to feel like the way we live life now is the only way we ever lived. But if you take a moment to think back to when the first lockdowns began—in March and April 2020 for many US, Canadian, and European residents—life has changed in many ways. Some of those changes require small daily actions, like wearing a face mask in public places. Others have affected entire industries, like the absence of in-person concerts, sporting events, and other performances.

As you think about what changed most in those early days of the COVID pandemic, your mind might gloss over one shift that certainly affected you and just about everyone else in the country: online shopping. In most areas, non-essential stores closed down. Restaurants closed for dine-in services and offered only pick-up or delivery. Essential stores, like pharmacies and grocery stores, reduced their hours, enforced (then new) guidelines like social distancing, and began offering more pick-up and delivery options. And what did the general population do? They shopped online more than ever before!

Recent statistics from the UK highlight the way e-commerce has grown in the past year. Here are a few remarkable statistics that illustrate the explosive way e-commerce has expanded since April 2020. (Many of these statistics are taken from the UK, but they are noteworthy even if your business is located in another country.)

  • UK January online retail sales grew 74 percent year-on-year. That is the largest rate of growth since the pandemic began in March 2020.
  • Of all retail sales in January 2021, online sales accounted for a record 35.2 percent.
  • Since the pandemic began, 46 percent of consumers in the UK purchased a product online that they had previously only purchased in-store. This highlights the huge opportunity for many industries that traditionally focus on in-person sales, like audiology, to “jump on the bandwagon” of e-commerce.
  • By 2025, global consumer mobile spending is expected to reach $270 billion. The pandemic increased mobile activity, which underlines the importance of having e-commerce options that work just as well on mobile devices as on laptops and desktop computers.
  • Cross-border e-commerce sales grew by 82 percent year-on-year in 2020. This shows that many people are looking internationally to find what they need. Small thinking will not benefit you in this e-commerce boom—your customers can be located all over the world!
  • In Q1 2020, US e-commerce penetration accelerated 10 years in 90 days. This intense acceleration illustrates the necessity of e-commerce, both for businesses and consumers.
  • 61 percent of fashion retailers say they are planning to reduce the number of SKUs in their inventory. You do not need to offer the widest variety of items via e-commerce; you only need to offer the ones your customers will buy. Using analytic tools can help you ensure you are offering the products your customers are looking for.
  • Since the beginning of the pandemic, buy-now-pay-later firms have seen a rise in interest and use of their services. Consider offering flexible payment options for your customers to accommodate their needs.

All of these statistics can be summed up in a single sentence: e-commerce is an immense opportunity that you simply cannot pass up—as a business or as a customer! To learn more about how to take advantage of e-commerce and use it to expand your business, please contact us today at AudiologyPlus.