May 2, 2020

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

* Gabe's Tips: *

An Outsiders View

My friend Matthew Fettman, pharmacist and owner of Davies Pharmacy reminds all of us that more people are staring at the outside of your store than ever! Is there away that you can give the store an extra shine? Matt also shared that marking the exterior walls with the parking spots for curbside pickup makes better sense than marking the pavement. Clever that Matt.

An Extraordinary Mother's Day

Assuming you are open Saturday and Sunday you only have 8 days to sell your Mother's Day cards. Use all available exterior signage available to remind people when Mother's Day is and you have cards! Have cards near your drive-through and ready to be shown at the curbside pickup area. On your business Facebook page post a 1-minute video promoting your greeting cards. Confirm in writing what your greeting card distributor's policy is for unsold cards — is it credit, cash back, or hold on to the cards for next year? Keep an inventory of the unsold cards where you can easily check the total when a credit does show up. You can download my Mother's Day work sheet by clicking here. Those of you who have the "Gabe's Favorite Tips" book can find the worksheet on page 21 along with extra copies in the back of the book. If you are looking for a copy of the book, click here.

It's not all coronavirus

May is Lyme disease, Allergy and Skin Cancer Awareness month. The virus is not going to stop any of those health risks from happening. Prepare a list to remind your customers of the basic needs of early summer.

You will truly enjoy this

Are you looking for valuable tips and inspiration? Then grab a pen and paper and click here to watch a video of amazing exchanges of ideas from a recent Town Hall Meeting featuring 13 of your peers. You are going to love to hear what Kelly Selby of Community Pharmacy, Denton, TX is up to.

And the top sellers are...

Here is a list of some of the OTC items that the attendees of the Town Hall meeting are having success in selling at the drive thru and at curb side delivery: a quality Multivitamin with zinc, Vitamin D, immune boosters, pulse oximeters, blood pressure kits, Magnesium Chelate 400mg, CoQ10 300mg, Gatorade, Omega 3, B-complex, Elderberry and Vitamin C.

Show 'em what you've got

Brittany Sanders PharmD, co-owner of The Pharmacy at Wellington, has taken advantage of what people are staring at when they are at the drive through window. She has turned a counter around to display some of the products listed above. Great idea! So, what do you have in your windows that people are looking at?

Carnation Instant Goodwill

Mother's Day is May 10. A carnation given at curbside or drive-thru would be a nice community pharmacy touch. Check with your local florist if they are game to partner up in a flower give away until supplies last promoting your store and the florist. Take some photos, and send them to me.

Pointy service now free for NCPA members

Pointy from Google displays your in-store products on Google so that your patients and customers can find what they want. Shoppers can look up your store or a product you sell and see essential information such as your product catalog, stock level estimates, opening hours and contact details. Pointy is normally $899 but they're offering it to NCPA pharmacies for FREE for a limited time! You can watch a video here.

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.

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