While no single layout will suit every pharmacy, there are certain layout and design concepts that should apply to most retail pharmacies. Here are ten tips for improving your pharmacy layout and design:
1. Layout and Design. These two functions are often misinterpreted as one in the same. Not true. Layout relates to the arrangement and placement of everything within the space; Design relates to aesthetics such as color and visual effects. Your customers and staff are influenced by the layout but do not see it while the design is much more obvious. Layout is much more essential than design and should never be sacrificed in order to create a unique appearance.
2. Use a grid layout style. Displays and counters positioned in straight, parallel lines will maximize the use of space. Angled island displays and curved counters can waste up to one third of the space without making any contributions while the higher cost is never justified.
3. Modular cabinetry combined with custom casework. Adjustments are inevitable as the pharmacy grows and trends change; modular fixtures make changes a lot easier and less costly. Each layout should provide versatility so that changes can be made with minimal interruption.
4. Use metal shelves in most areas. Metal shelving has many advantages over wood and glass. Metal shelves are more adjustable, easier to maintain, cost less and look better much longer. Further, they have built-in label channels for price tags and scanner labels while others do not. Again, wood shelving that is used to make your pharmacy look different is a waste of money.
5. Adjust lighting levels in the pharmacy. The prescription department generally requires more lighting than the sales area. A valance separating the work area from the customer area makes the ceiling and lighting configuration less noticeable. A misconception is that you need less lighting during daylight than at night.
6. Choose colors wisely. Most non-selling areas such as the walls and floors should be a neutral color; darker colors may be used for accents, service counters, vertical panels and signage that can emanate individual personality. Lighter colors make the pharmacy appear more spacious and the colorful merchandise becomes the attention getter. Avoid patterns and checkerboard designs in the floor covering that cause the space to look smaller and attract attention.
7. Dispensing area. The dispensing department should have adequate work counter space and shelving. Again, modular counters and shelving make adjustments and expansions much simpler. The area should not be crowded so that personnel can move about with ease. Work flow is a major component in the dispensing area.
8. Display similar categories together. For customer convenience, place similar merchandise and service departments adjacent to each other. That may also lead to an additional purchase.
9. Differentiate your business. Provide departments and services not offered by your competition. Compounding, MTM, and custom patient services are examples. It is much more significant to be unique than to look unique. Some pharmacy designers like to use lots of custom applications that draw more attention to the décor than to the merchandise.
10. Security. Place departments that are more susceptible to pilferage in view of personnel and service counters. Have as much of the sales area viewable at personnel stations as possible. Having one entrance rather than two or more improves security. Installation of cameras and other security measures will discourage criminals from targeting your pharmacy.
For more tips in creating a more profitable pharmacy and ways to attract new customers, get expert advice from Pharmacy Planning Solutions. Call us at 800-282-2318 to schedule a free consultation or e-mail any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org