October 9, 2021

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

* Gabe's Tips: *

Start in the Middle

When it comes to creating a seasonal holiday display, keep in mind how most customers shop. No matter how long or short your fixture, shoppers gravitate to the center of the fixture. For example, if a gondola is 16ft long, the customer will walk 8ft. Once at the middle of the display customers will look at eye level from left to right (like crossing a road). Knowing this, your job is to place a high-value interesting item at the center of your fixture, at the height from the floor between 4ft 6inches to 5ft. Use this same eye-level theory for endcaps.

Thermometers are hot, check them

Along with the Diabetes Management category, this time of year merchandisers are asked to update the Daily Living section and the offering of thermometers. As far as the daily living items go, the most important thing you will want to do is check the retails! Many of the items are priced with Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price, and those can be way too high! Look for a margin of 45% and no more than 50%. When it comes to thermometers, they deserve an endcap of their own. Use a very narrow top shelf to display infrared non-touch thermometers. Then peg less expensive thermometers below the top shelf. Depending on how deep your top shelf is, place your pegs six or more inches below the shelf. If you have room for a shelf under the pegs, fill the shelf with immune boosters. One type for adults and another for children. Use the bottom (base shelf) for your additional inventory of infrared thermometers.

What I do for fun

I have been looking at a lot of photos of endcaps lately. The best-merchandised endcaps have a theme, no more than six different items on the endcap, one size of each product to choose from, for example, a 60 count bottle of gummy immune boosters instead of bottles of 30 count and 60 counts. Make sure to have plenty of inventory on hand, and a compelling sign that only mentions a price if there is a recognizable savings. Otherwise, the sign features the theme of the display or the benefits of the products.

Paint Pretty Pink Pumpkins Proactively

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I want to share a fun way of promoting this serious issue. Ask staff to decorate pink pumpkins, display them in the store, and place photos on your website and Facebook business accounts. For more info on how to hold a pink pumpkin contest, go online (tip #4).

I'm in Charlotte

For those reading these tips while at the NCPA Annual Convention in Charlotte, please join me, and Acacia Flury, on Saturday at 11:30AM at room Richardson A "DME: Your Next Front-End Superstar followed by a non-CE shoot the breeze meeting." On Monday at 8:15 AM, room Richardson C join me for Front-End Product Opportunities non-CE, with FREE breakfast, a Goody bag of samples, and an update on new products! Then on Tuesday, join me for "The Future of the Front End" 1:15 room Richardson A.

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. 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 gabe.trahan@ncpa.org with your questions, photos, best advice, and recommendations. What's selling well in your store? Let us know.

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