May 25, 2019

News, products, marketing and merchandising tips for the
front end of community pharmacies

* Gabe's Tips: *

Easy routes to every destination

Great merchandisers understand that increasing companion and impulse sales go hand in hand with a well laid out store. When it comes to customer traffic flow and the ease of shopping your store, fixtures can be your worst enemy (see before floor plan here). Adjusting the size of a few fixtures, adding an end-cap, and using banners on the ends of isles can transform a bad floor plan into a perfect plan. Click here to see the results of budget-minded remodel.

Bonus suggestion: Have someone pay attention to the way customers travel through your store for an hour or so, even map it out. Do you have some dead spots?

Seasons in the sun

If you are looking for merchandising space for summer product, then consider treating your school supplies department as a seasonal section. School supplies have a low and peak time in sales. We are in a low time now and will be into August. To increase space for summer items, temporarily downsize your school supplies to 4ft of office supplies: staplers, staples, packing tapes, cellophane tape, scissors, paperclips, pens, copier paper, and envelopes.

Let's play 20 questions

When I was a gift buyer for 14 stores, I was told that I was a lousy gift buyer; that hurt. It hurt because what they said was right; I was buying with my gut. I was told that I did not ask the right questions. Since then, I have forced myself to ask over 20 questions before I buy anything. It came in handy when I became a buyer for 3,000 stores. Click here to see my questions.

Feminine sensitivity

In June, merchandisers will be looking to update the Feminine Care section. This category remains one of the most price-sensitive departments in a pharmacy. If sales are poor in this category, consider downsizing the department or lowering the retails by adjusting your zone pricing. Once you have made adjustments to the department merchandise the incontinence section nearby. You will see a sales increase in both departments.

Don't discount when demand is the highest

Father's day is June 16th. Take advantage of last-minute shoppers, do not discount anything until after the holiday. I visited a store recently and was shocked to see all gifts 25% off and it was five days before Mother's Day! There are two reasons why this was so wrong. The obvious reason is that they were giving away 25% of the profit on the busiest selling days. The other reason is when the buyers look back at last year's sales they will be misinformed of the success they had in gift sales; they more than likely will buy more, not remembering gifts were all on sale. Let me help your memory for this Father's Day sales, click here for the worksheet.

* Front-End Marketplace Vendor of the Month *

For the patios near you!

One of Front-End Marketplace's newest vendors, Skeeter Screen, is offering 10% OFF and receive FREE freight with a purchase of $350 or more from May 1-June 15. Prepare for outdoor fun with these all-natural DEET-free mosquito deterrent products for every porch, patio and yard.

Show off your fancy feet

Since it will be a week into June before the next issue of Profit Makers hits your inbox, here is a sneak peek at our June Vendor of the Month...

June's Vendor of the Month will feature Probelle, a leading personal care brand providing natural clinically proven fungal care solutions. Get ready to order this product from Front-End Marketplace so your customers can wearing their sandals with healthy looking feet. Starting June 1st, Probelle is offering 20% OFF and FREE freight on orders of $100 or more.

Front End Resources for NCPA Members

Being a member of NCPA means you have access to a treasure trove of helpful hints, tips, and resources to make your front end more profitable! Download One-Pager Tips on a variety of topics. Gabe typically posts a tip once or twice a day on his Twitter account — if you're on Twitter, give him a follow at @NCPAGabe. You can also find tips in Gabe's monthly column in America's Pharmacist. The Overhaul of Fame galleries contain hundreds of photos to inspire you, from effective signs to successful end-caps and everything in between. Finally, you and your staff can access several staff training videos that will help you take an objective view of your store, both inside and out!

This wealth of knowledge is due to the fantastic photos, ideas, and suggestions we receive every day from NCPA members like you. Drop him a line at with your questions, photos, best advice, and recommendations. What's selling well in your store? Let us know.

"Profit Makers" is produced by NCPA in collaboration with Drug Store News

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