Is your pharmacy an In-and-Out Burger?

December 5, 2013By Focus on the Pharmacy Front End Blog, Independent Pharmacy

by Jen Johnston

Is your pharmacy an “In-and-Out Burger” or a “TGI Fridays”? Do your patients come to fill their scripts and quickly leave or do they feel comfortable taking their time?

I visited a pharmacy last fall where one of the main entrances was positioned directly next to the pharmacy counter. The other entrance led directly into the impressive greeting card section with a straight aisle to the pharmacy counter. I stayed for a while and watched as people either came in for cards only or they made a beeline straight for the pharmacy counter, got their prescription, and left. Almost every customer completely ignored the OTC and personal care products. This pharmacy was definitely an “In-and-Out Burger.”

This pharmacy could easily become a “TGI Fridays” — a place where people linger. All they really need to do is spend some time swapping their greeting cards section with their OTC and Personal Care products. They could also remove the straight aisles that lead to the pharmacy counter and increase chances that patients will buy “just one more thing. the straight aisles that lead to the pharmacy counter

Positioning the prescription waiting area within a section that showcases new-to-market products or everyday essentials is another way to encourage people to stay longer.


Changing the floor plan would mean those greeting card-only customers would have to walk past other items, including seasonal or condition-focused endcaps to pique their interest.

Take a look at your floor plan. What changes can you make? You may think you are doing your customers a favor by making things easier. But here’s a little secret — they don’t like your pharmacy because you make things easy for them. They like your pharmacy because of the relationship they have with you, their trusted independent pharmacist. So, if they have to walk a little farther for those greeting cards, or if there’s an interesting display between the entrance and the prescription counter, they will still value their relationship with you — plus they might purchase that “one extra thing!”

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