April 25, 2011

In retailing, it’s a given that a long-term, severe recession will cut through the ranks of food, drug and general merchandise retailers like a scythe through wheat, pushing weaker players out of the market as consumer spending dries up and Darwinian realities winnow the field. But it’s also true that the strongest merchants can emerge not only intact, but also with even brighter prospects if they innovate, invest and retain the loyalty of their customers.


April 25, 2011

The pharmacist isn’t just someone in a white coat who hands out bottles of pills anymore. The role of pharmacists has been changing and expanding dramatically over the last several years.

Now, pharmacists in all 50 states can offer a service previously reserved for doctors and nurses: 
administering vaccinations. Retail pharmacies across the country are racing to join the immunization trend, with Weis Markets recently announcing that it would spend the year making sure all its pharmacists were trained to give vaccinations. 


April 25, 2011

Customers are seeing purple again — reminiscent of another switch that took advantage of the eye-catching color purple. Sanofi-Aventis through its Chattem division in March launched Allegra, the last of the second-generation antihistamines. And purple-powered displays, like this in a Walmart in Lancaster, Pa., dotted the retail pharmacy landscape.


April 25, 2011

Beauty junkies in Canada have a new option when shopping for products. A new format recently unveiled by Katz Group Canada’s flagship Rexall drug store chain is aimed at making its stores “an innovative health destination.”


The Rexall Healthy Living Pharmacy format features a combined skin care and beauty care department. The goal: to focus on derm versus just cosmetics.


April 25, 2011


“Our goal here is to improve health care for Canadians,” Katz Group Canada CEO Andy Giancamilli told Drug Store News about the company’s new Rexall Healthy Living Pharmacy concept it opened in six of its stores across Canada in 2010. The concept, which borrows some of the design innovation and cache usually associated with the beauty category to better engage customers around health and wellness, includes more than 200 health information touch points.


April 25, 2011

Drug retailers are doggedly pursuing the pet care category, with Rite Aid fetching its own piece of the $47.7 billion category, according to the 2009-2010 “National Pet Owners Survey” conducted by the American Pet Products Association.


April 25, 2011

While the economic downturn battered retailers across all channels, new pharmacy services and a new state-of-the-art pharmacy system has helped regional player Kinney Drugs weather the storm.


April 25, 2011

After being hemmed in by recession, cash flow problems and costs, a venerable lion of West Coast food and drug retailing is roaring again. 


April 25, 2011

Growing the health-and-wellness business remains a top priority for Sam’s Club as the warehouse club operator has identified those key categories as areas where it can demonstrate value, drive member loyalty and gain market share.


Sam’s has high expectations for health and wellness, along with food and consumables, as it looks to deliver on its brand promise of “savings made simple” and maintain the same-store sales momentum experienced throughout 2010 that culminated with a 2.7% gain in the fourth quarter.


April 25, 2011

Armed with the positioning line, “It’s Time To Get Better,” Sav-Mor Drug Stores continues to emphasize the big difference between its network of franchised locations and the corporate mentality of the chain operations.


To that end, its most recent radio and television campaign positioned the pharmacies against the large national chains. The customer-
service-focused campaign established the Sav-Mor pharmacist as “your personal pharmacist” along with the idea that “nobody cares more for the customer than the owner.”


April 25, 2011

The 59-year-old Save Mart supermarket chain more than doubled its store count in 2007 with the purchase of 132 Albertsons stores, but entered something of a dormant period since then. Save Mart now operates 241 stores in California and Nevada, down from a peak of 255 in 2009, and 114 in-store pharmacies, down from 115 in 2009.


April 25, 2011

On top of its 101 in-store pharmacies, Schnucks last year opened four specialty pharmacies, offering specialized services to patients.


The pharmacies offer services for patients living with such chronic conditions as HIV, cancer, multiple sclerosis and autoimmune diseases, as well as for people recovering from organ transplants, said company spokesman Paul Simon. “It’s for patients who require special attention and hard-to-source medication,” he added.


April 25, 2011

Sears is banking on beauty and is hoping that its recent expansion into beauty not only encourages more women to see the softer side of Sears, but also will bolster cross-category shopping.


April 25, 2011


Shopko’s story is sort of like a retailing version of “The Little Engine that Could.” Among mass merchandise retailers, it’s one of the smaller and less well-known chains, but that hasn’t stopped it from making its mark, particularly in new health-and-wellness and pharmacy initiatives.


April 25, 2011

ShopRite is striving to help its shoppers shop right by focusing on health and wellness and added convenience. To help customers live healthier lives, the grocer has, at select locations, an on-site registered dietitian. 


Wakefern implemented the retail dietitian program in 2006, and today there are 20 retail dietitians working in 23 ShopRite locations.


April 25, 2011

Supervalu operates under the maxim that the pharmacy division exists as the “solution center for the sick and destination for the healthy.” In other words, Supervalu pharmacy endeavors to be that retail rarity: all things to all people. If it has something to do with health and wellness, treatments or prevention, Supervalu has an answer. 


April 25, 2011

Target is branching out.


Buoyed by surging profits and customer satisfaction scores, the Minneapolis-based giant is reaching into Canada, preparing a new small-store format for urban areas and going after a bigger share of the nation’s grocery dollar. Target also is spending billions on store renovations, aggressively leveraging a new loyalty card program and growing its commitment to health at its pharmacies and in-store clinics.


April 25, 2011

Target is encouraging customers to direct their sights toward its in-store pharmacies with its “Ask Us” campaign. The campaign includes signage located throughout the store designed to direct shoppers to seek information from pharmacists about everything from allergies to generic discounts, promoting Target’s pharmacists as experts on medicines.


The signage includes floor graphics in the aisles leading to the pharmacy counter, signs hanging from ceilings and placards posted on endcaps. 


April 25, 2011

Looking more like a shelf within Bath & Body Works than one you’d find in retail pharmacy is the Essence of Beauty endcap spotted within one CVS/pharmacy in New York. Essence of Beauty is available exclusively at CVS/pharmacy and online at CVS.com.


April 25, 2011

Duane Reade, which now is owned by Walgreens, is redefining the chain drug beauty shopping experience for New Yorkers as it continues to roll out its Look Boutique as part of its transformation.


The upscale staffed beauty department services all aspects of beauty, including brows with a Ramy-branded brow bar that offers in-store brow-shaping services. Available beauty brands include Becca, POP Beauty, Purminerals, ’Tini Beauty Lounge and Vera Moore.


April 25, 2011


A new partnership with Gold Standard/Elsevier has solidified Thrifty White Pharmacy’s efforts to bring big-city services to its small-town customer base, which is spread across five states: Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Iowa and Montana. 


The Maple Grove, Minn.-based chain of 84 stores recently licensed Alchemy, a new drug database and decision support solution, for all of its pharmacy and telepharmacy dispensing systems. The new partnership will enable the chain to streamline its prescription filling process and provide drug information to pharmacists instantly.


April 25, 2011

The way chief executive R. David Yost sees it, AmerisourceBergen Corp.’s Good Neighbor Pharmacy program is a bulwark for independent pharmacists against the pressures of a brutally competitive pharmacy market and an unforgiving economy.


April 25, 2011

There’s nothing like a recession for focusing merchants on what matters most. For USA Drug, that meant concentrating on core markets, cutting costs and recharging its image for down-home value, neighborly service and a broadly merchandised front end focused on local consumer preferences.


April 25, 2011

Comparison shopping across blood-glucose meters couldn’t be easier than at Walgreens. Pictured here at a store just outside of Baltimore, customers can hold and feel the individual monitors and review individual bullet points as part of this pull-box display. Located just outside the pharmacy waiting area, the display also is ideal for quick and easy pharmacist recommendations.