Even though you rely on your pharmacy's "back end" – your prescription counter – to bring in a lot of your profits, it's no secret that your front end – your merchandise section – is also a major contributor to profits. Because of that, you should pay as much attention to the front end of your business as you do to the back end.
Fortunately, there's a science to merchandising your pharmacy's front end. It's easy to do with these five simple steps.
1) Update your look
Invest in new wallpaper, fresh paint, new floor coverings like wood and carpet, and new lighting fixtures. These upgrades make your store's interior much more inviting to your customers, making them want to stay and shop.
In addition, modern pharmacy shelving and fixtures not only enhance your pharmacy design, but they also make your job much easier. You can choose styles and materials that will complement your decor, and they're safer and more attractive than rickety outdated shelving and fixtures as well.
2) Bring the outdoors in
Getting out in nature lifts people's spirits, making them feel more peaceful and serene. You can entice your customers to "stay in and shop" if you bring nature to them. Invest in some live non-flowering plants and put in a skylight or two. You can also enlarge existing windows as part of a pharmacy design and remodeling project to bring more natural light in.
3) Focus on lighting design
Focus on lighting design to enhance merchandise displays. Swap out old overhead florescent light fixtures (with their glare and audible "buzz") for compact, full-spectrum fluorescent bulbs and/or LED lighting.
Use focal lighting for central displays to draw customers' attention to "hot" or high-volume items that are on special, and use softer overall lighting – including natural lighting – to give customers the relaxing shopping experience they're looking for.
4) Create a counterclockwise footpath through your store
When customers enter your store, they'll look left and then go right. You can make shopping easier for them – and more lucrative for you – by including a proper footpath through your store in your pharmacy design. The footpath should be wide enough to manage one "lane" of traffic from either direction so that there are no bottlenecks and so that customers won't bump into each other. Customers should be able to see every department from this path, including any displays you place at the entrance to each department. The displays especially will draw customers away from the footpath (which should be easy to break away from and then rejoin as needed). They can browse departments and then rejoin the path when ready.
5) Duplicate displays of popular merchandise throughout the store
Set up "repeat" displays of seasonal, best-selling, and staple merchandise throughout the store. For example, house cold and flu medications in their particular department on standard shelving where customers know they can expect to find it – but don't forget to also place it in the checkout area and at the entrance to your store. You can also place seasonal, best-selling, or "hot" items at the entrance to each department; customers can easily see these displays from the aforementioned footpath. As they break away from the footpath to browse the displays, they'll be drawn into the departments themselves for more shopping.
It's easy to merchandise your pharmacy's front end and improve your profits as well as your customers' shopping experiences. Just pay attention to these five elements in pharmacy design.