Walgreens launches Covid-19 vaccine portal with Adobe Experience Cloud

The vaccine portal highlights how Walgreens has been able to activate digital channels as an essential retailer.

In Summer of 2020, Walgreens Boots Alliance announced a strategic partnership with Adobe and Microsoft. The technology partners would play an important role as Walgreens and Boots (UK) worked to enhance shopping and wellness experiences, while driving a mass personalization effort. In the U.S., that meant activating a loyalty program with over 100 million members.

The partnership with Adobe Experience Cloud brought a set of tools that produced deeper customer insights, while delivering more relevant customer experiences that were integrated across channels like the website, mobile app, and in-person retail. In the months since the partnership was unveiled, Walgreens Boots Alliance has made great progress, demonstrating what it means to drive meaningful digital transformation on the behalf of customers.

Most recently, Walgreens in the U.S. launched an online portal for Covid-19 vaccines. The experience provided an easy way for users to determine their eligibility, register for appointments, receive reminders for second shots and even schedule Uber rides to get to a Walgreens location. It also acted as a hub for vaccine information and tips, in a time when the demand for guidance has been very high.

The entire journey was delivered in a few short weeks, through a coordinated effort with teams spanning IT, product, marketing, retail and more. Adobe applications including Adobe Experience Manager delivered the experience consistently across web and mobile channels, while Adobe Analytics kept a pulse on where users hit roadblocks. It will help accelerate vaccine distribution and continue the progress already made — In the month of March, Walgreens was able to vaccinate over 4 million people with first shots.

The vaccine portal highlights how Walgreens has been able to activate digital channels as an essential retailer. In the early days of the pandemic, while the company became one of the first to launch Covid-19 testing sites, they also expedited new ways for consumers to shop safely. This included online orders that could be picked up via drive-thru counters or curbside.

An updated myWalgreens customer experience platform (launched in November 2020) took this a step further, allowing customers to order and collect items in as little as 30 minutes, while expanding delivery options in-store and through partners like Doordash and Postmates. To date, over 3 million pickup orders have been fulfilled, and mobile app usage is up 30 percent YoY.

myWalgreens also delivered new services such as 24/7 pharmacy chat and personalized health advice, with an updated interface for managing vaccine appointments. As the app gains wider adoption, Walgreens is further connecting the experience with channels like the website and retail stores. Someone who gets their first shot for instance, will instantly see an updated vaccine tracker in the app.

By focusing on personalization, Walgreens makes it so that each app user receives a slightly different experience based on their preferences and relationship with the company. And customers are taking note: With nearly 70 million app downloads, and more than 56 million myWalgreens members, customers are finding valuable engagement with the platforms as can be seen by the app rating of 4.8. The company will continue working with Adobe here, to better understand consumers, personalize across channels and ensure experiences are evolving to meet changing needs.

myWalgreens also extends the personalization that customers see in channels like the website and targeted promotions — an approach that is seeing great traction. In Q1 2021 earnings, Walgreens shared that 155 basis points of sales increases came through mass personalization efforts, another signal that consumers respond better to experiences that are aware of their needs and interactions with the company. And even more impressive, overall digital traffic is up by more than 50 percent YoY.

“For more than 120 years, Walgreens has focused on providing accessible health and well-being solutions, particularly in underserved communities,” said Alyssa Raine, group vice president of customer marketing platforms. “The pandemic has expanded the role of our pharmacists and team members, making them first-line resources on testing and vaccines. When you couple this with our digital strategy that focuses on meeting the unique and personal needs of all of our customers and patients, it gives us the ability to help remove friction points between our customers and well-being resources. Our technology partnership with Adobe helps ensure we can execute this experience across all relevant channels by putting the customer first and ensuring we are meeting their highly personalized individual needs.”