Business Support » Display advice

Are you making the most of your shop displays? Below are some ways that you can encourage sales in your store, from display advice and suggested plannograms to stock management.

How to make your pharmacy display increase your sales

The pharmacy is often the first port of call when a person is unwell. It is important that they feel they’re in an environment which offers the products they might require, trustworthy help together with the advice and information they need. Obviously employing well presented, knowledgeable and empathetic staff is key but the best staff will be hampered by an off putting environment.

First impressions count

Everything, from your shop window and your entrance area right through to your shop shelves and serving area, creates an impression on potential customers.

What do your customers see as they approach your pharmacy? Take a few minutes to look at your pharmacy from outside or go across the street for a wider view. It can sometimes be difficult to be objective about the place you work so maybe ask a friend or relative what they see when they look at the exterior and window displays.

  • Is the area outside the pharmacy clean? No discarded litter or other rubbish?
  • Might the shop front, including the door, benefit from a fresh coat of paint?
  • Are all windows cleaned on a regular basis?
  • Is the signage clear and, if appropriate, switched on?
  • Are window posters and displays “fresh”? A poster that is out-of-date, tattered at the edges or sun-soiled can put customers off.
  • Are there too many posters in the window? If so customers might struggle to see your key messages and, when inside, it might make the interior darker and less welcoming for them.
  • Handwritten signs or posters (both inside and outside) look unprofessional
  • Is the till area or counter clean, tidy and welcoming? Customers won’t want to see your coffee mug or tea cup on display!

Logical Layout

One of the first things that helps convey the right atmosphere is a good, clear, logical in-store layout.

You could have the best stock in the neighbourhood but it won’t sell well if people can’t find it easily. Even stock that needs to be purchased over the counter still benefits from being well displayed.

Research suggests the mind can only take in up to 5 pieces of information effectively. Too much information (packaging, posters, show cards, leaflets, notices, prices) may confuse and could lead to “switch off”.

  • Keep OTC products in categories, for easy viewing by staff & customers
  • Vertical blocks allow people to find the product they are looking for faster than horizontal merchandising.
  • Shoppers use big brands and items they recognise as signposts.
  • Think carefully about which categories should be beside each other. You may trigger a purchase someone hadn’t pre-planned. Eg a travel-pack of tissues beside allergy or winter ailments products.
  • Middle shelves are prime positions because they’re on eye-level. Use them for your best sellers.
  • Lower, less visible shelves are ideal for slower moving lines but bear children’s inquisitive little fingers in mind!
  • Products aimed specifically at the elderly should not be too high or low.
  • Ends of aisles get lots of customer traffic - use them to draw attention to special offers.
  • Think which impulse buys might best suit the till area. Not just sweets and lollipops!

Taking care of your stock

Products must never be past their sell by dates and certainly shouldn’t be dusty, dirty, damaged or displayed in a muddle.

  • Always place new stock BEHIND any old stock on the shelf, unless the expiry date suggests otherwise.
  • It is illegal not to have the price of the item clearly displayed.
  • Make sure any special storage requirements are followed – eg away from heat sources, such as lights or heaters as well as conditions that are too cold (as some liquids may crystallise)
  • It is not advisable to accept delivery of any stock that has a sell-by date of less than 3 months.
  •  Regularly check MHRA for updated product advice and indication changes.


As more and more people are encouraged to ask their pharmacist for advice, rather than face the inconvenience of having to make an appointment at their doctors, offering customers an environment in which to speak confidentially, a consultation room, is now mandatory.

Wherever you have for private discussions make sure

  • It is not used as a stock room
  • It is not used to store the brush, mop or bucket!
  • The desk top and floor is kept clear at all times
  • Sensitive information (e.g. customer details) is kept secure

If people feel they can discuss private, personal healthcare concerns with an understanding professional, they are more likely to become regular customers and recommend your business to family and friends.

Disclaimer Notice: Any tips and/or recommendations included in this section (or others in the website) are purely informational and do not constitute advice or guarantee any specific results.