November 7, 2020

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

* Gabe's Tips: *

NICE job, team!

Would you like to boost your team's morale? Wouldn't you like to be the bearer of good news? Well, thanks to our friends at QS/1, you can enter your team's accomplishments in NCPA Innovation Center's NICE Awards. This year there are five different categories to enter! Your chances are looking good. Think how proud you and your team would be if you are singled out as one of the best of the best! Enter right now. Good luck my friends!

Pain Removal

November is when merchandisers are asked to update the pain section. This is the one of the categories where you will need additional room to cross merchandise natural/homeopathy products. To find the space, you need to refer to the deleted items list that came with your planogram. Remove the deleted items out immediately, return them if you can; if not, put them in a closeout section. Check the new item list and determine if the new item is a line extension that you may not need. Get familiar with the most helpful "item rank by subcategory" page. There you can determine what slow-moving products you can pull out of the set. When it comes to cross-merchandising CBD, use signage. The top rail of the gondola is a great spot for signs. If you are looking for more information concerning CBD, visit NCPA CBD Source.

A Helpful Checklist

When buying a product that your primary wholesaler does not inventory, you will need to do the following: Check to see if the company sells retail off their web site. If so, do make sure they don't offer it for less than the MSRP! A supplier should never be your competition. If the item is either bulky or heavy, look for free freight. Confirm that the opening and reorder amount makes good inventory sense. And finally, look for a discount or free goods and marketing materials with your opening order. Do this every time you buy from a new vendor! Check out the company you see on the banner at the top of the page and see how the vendor meets these criteria

Myth Taken

"Our store is different, carrying one each on the shelf works for our customers."

Here is the truth, stores can be different; customers are not. Every customer on the planet doesn't like coming back the next day because you are out of something. Ones are nones. If you have one each on the shelf, I safely assume your OTC sales are awful. Today, except for braces, boost your ones to two or more. Determine your 6 best sellers of each OTC category and carry no less than 6 of each of those items. Make sure to use your "compare to" and "your pharmacist recommends" signs. And check your retail pricing strategy.

Profits on Main Street

Checkout, pick up, drop off counters, and the main aisle that leads to the pharmacy need to be profit centers. Merchandise the counter mentioned above with items wisely by not crowding the area and choose items that retail for no less than $15.00. The main aisle may be the only aisle being shopped. If you have a large investment in holiday items, then that's where the holiday lines need to be. Otherwise, pharmaceutical grade supplements, high-end compression socks, and PPE items go in the high traffic area.

Thank you for being a member of NCPA.

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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