Study finds convenience factor important for drug store shoppers

NEW YORK — Are drug stores becoming the new convenience stores? A new survey by The Hartman Group indicates that for many shoppers, the drug store is a destination for convenient purchases — particularly, food and beverages.

In a survey of 1,900 adults in Seattle and Dallas, the Bellevue, Wash.-based research firm found that when respondents most recently visited drug stores, 24% of trips were for items for immediate consumption, while 29% were stocking up items. Significant percentages of purchases were for OTC, personal care and consumable items.

The close attention many drug store chains have been paying to their front ends is a testament to the trend. Walgreens, both in its core stores and in the New York-based Duane Reade chain, has been sprucing up the beauty and personal care sections with a wider range of products and amenities for shoppers, as well as expanding the selection of consumable products on offer. Rite Aid and CVS have been making similar efforts, as have some regional chains like Seattle-based Bartell Drugs.

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