Rite Aid's new store prototype features a non-traditional working arrangement for pharmacists.
There’s an RxEvolution underway at Rite Aid where the company has launched an integrated rebranding effort and opened its third store of the future that provides a unique work arrangement for pharmacists.
The company said its store of the future showcases a modern design concept focused on whole health that revolutionizes the classic drug store experience by bringing pharmacists out from behind the counter and into the open.
The new look stores and rebranding represent the next steps in the company’s transformation strategy called RxEvolution that was unveiled in March. Today’s announcement includes an advertising campaign that demonstrates Rite Aid’s commitment to provide the fusion of traditional medicine and alternative remedies to help people not just get healthy, but get thriving. The brand refresh also includes a new brand identity (logo) that is rolling out across the chain, whole health merchandise, a refreshed digital experience, and a new store prototype.
“This is an important milestone in our relentless pursuit of becoming the preeminent whole health destination. We’re charging forward on our journey to revitalize the chain drug store experience – store by store, community by community – and today we’re ready and excited to invite customers to join us on this journey,” said Jim Peters, COO of Rite Aid. “Customers will soon take notice as the look and feel of our stores is being refreshed, our merchandising mix evolves to an assortment that best supports whole health, and perhaps most importantly, our trusted neighborhood pharmacists are empowered and qualified to consult not simply on traditional medicines, but alternative remedies as well. We’re redefining an industry, and aspire to get each one of our customers to thrive.”
According to the company, it seeks to deliver a fresh, differentiated experience across all channels with a company strategy targeting Millennial and Gen X women who take care of themselves, their children, aging parents, and even pets. Over the past year, the company said it has been building the foundation for an elevated customer experience, establishing on-trend supplier relationships, delivering new and enhanced training, tools and work processes to all in-store associates, using lean methodology to free up pharmacists’ time, modernizing its e-commerce infrastructure and online experience, and physically refreshing its fleet of stores.
Elevated Role of Pharmacists
A new 30-second television spot highlights what Rite Aid calls the “Perfect Fusion” of traditional medicine and alternative remedies with the 6,300 Rite Aid pharmacists at the center of the fusion. The new branding and ad campaign illustrate how Rite Aid pharmacists will elevate their role as whole health advocates within their communities, leveraging the high level of trust consumers already have in pharmacists and the frequency consumers access pharmacies during their everyday routines, according to the company. Rite Aid also invested in continuing education to ensure that pharmacists are not only certified immunizers, but now also trained integrative pharmacy specialists – so they are uniquely qualified and prepared to elevate the overall well-being of their customers and communities.
“Pharmacists are perhaps the most trusted and accessible – yet underutilized – healthcare providers,” said Jocelyn Konrad, executive vice president, chief pharmacy officer, Rite Aid. “Pharmacists can and do serve as the last-mile connector in the healthcare ecosystem, and are trusted healthcare experts in people’s day-to-day lives. We’re unlocking their potential so our pharmacists can shine and do what they do best: care for our communities and customers.”
Upgrading the Digital Experience
In recent months, Rite Aid also launched a new online experience through RiteAid.com and its mobile app, kicking off a digital refresh that provides customers with an elevated user experience. The enhanced RiteAid.com and mobile app feature a fresh, modern look with personalized content, intuitive navigation and a more user-friendly online shopping cart.
In addition to existing prescription delivery options, Rite Aid has continued to form partnerships and invest in technology to offer customers new omnichannel shopping options. For example, a recent partnership with Instacart made delivery of non-prescription items available across the chain’s entire retail footprint, which has become even more important amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Rite Aid also offers prescription delivery at most locations, and will soon announce a new partnership to expand this service.
Whole Health Merchandise and Experience
The whole health experience carries through Rite Aid’s retail and digital footprint – the product assortment is shifting based on the insight that Rite Aid’s growth target consumers increasingly crave products that are conducive to a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Throughout Rite Aid stores and digital experiences, customers will find products with attributes that today’s consumers demand, such as organic, non-GMO, cruelty-free, clean, and free from harmful chemicals.
The merchandising mix also includes a shift toward alternative remedies that support whole health – products that help customers get better sleep, alleviate stress, support immunity, and address pain are all major focus areas for Rite Aid. As more wellness-oriented products hit the shelves, Rite Aid pharmacists are ready to offer insight and answer questions. Additionally, front-end associates are receiving ongoing education on these new products and their attributes so that they can help customers find what they need.
Stores of the Future
Helping drive the RxEvolution and elevate the in-store experience further, Rite Aid recently introduced its first two “Stores of the Future” – a modern store design concept focused on whole health – in Etters, Pennsylvania., and Littleton, New Hampshire. The third “Store of the Future” opened today in Moscow, Pennsylvania., with additional locations rolling out in select markets in the coming months.
Rite Aid’s “Stores of the Future” revolutionize the classic drug store experience by bringing pharmacists out from behind the counter and into the open, enabling them to be easily accessible to offer advice to customers. Featuring an airy interior filled with vibrant colors, modern signage and an enhanced merchandise assortment, Rite Aid “Stores of the Future” are modern neighborhood destinations to inspire clean, healthy living.
Rite Aid will also have beauty ambassadors in select stores to offer guidance on the company’s updated, on-trend beauty product mix, which includes a shift toward natural, chemical-free options. The result is a store that feels like a spa-like destination for products that customers can feel good and get excited about – not the tired, traditional drugstore chain experience customers have grown accustomed to.