Well has unveiled a new retail concept – ‘The Pharmacy Shop’ – as the chain looks to trial new ideas for its 780 stores.

Customer research has led to the development of the new format piloting in 12 new concept stores over coming months, offering a “modern, retail destination,” and “a place which people choose to visit for all their health and well-being needs”.

The new stores will look to challenge the idea of what a local pharmacy should be, said Emma Smith, head of retail and marketing at Well. The new approach looks to “put a smile on customer’s faces,” she adds.

“We’ve taken the best of the traditional pharmacy and given it a place in the lives of the modern day shopper. Today, our customers want to receive exceptional health care advice and wellbeing technology, as well as modern, trend driven, value for money products, right in the heart of their local community.”

The first store to be launched, in Highgate, London, offers a range of products to help consumers “keep and feel well,” including beauty and skincare, health and wellbeing products, wearable fitness technology and gifts. A free to use ‘health kiosk’ offers on-the-spot, digital health checks, including blood pressure, BMI and weight measurement, supported by advice from the pharmacy team. The customer experience is improved, said Well, by a clear signage and information in “clear, everyday language” and a separate express queue for prescriptions.

John Nuttall, CEO of Well, said that shoppers’ needs are changing. “Our pharmacies play a vital role in the communities they serve but we know our customers want more. We’ve realised that their shopping habits have changed significantly, along with their needs, wants and expectations of healthcare,” he said.

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