CVS/pharmacy and Walgreens are the top choices of consumers who fill prescriptions at a retail pharmacy, according to an ongoing shopper behavior study by The Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research.

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Retail News Breaks

Poll: CVS, Walgreens are shoppers' top Rx choices

January 22nd, 2014

DENVER – CVS/pharmacy and Walgreens are the top choices of consumers who fill prescriptions at a retail pharmacy, according to an ongoing shopper behavior study by The Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research.

The marketing and research firms said Wednesday that of the 78% of shoppers who fill prescriptions at a brick-and-mortar retail pharmacy, 23% choose CVS and 19% select Walgreens.

Meanwhile, 7% of those polled indicated that they use mail order to fill prescriptions, but that figure was higher than the percentages of consumers who said they fill scripts at Target, Costco or Sam's Club pharmacies.

Survey respondents were asked to rank their priorities while shopping at their preferred retail pharmacy.

CVS shoppers indicated that they were most concerned with quality, with 68% saying they want to find the best-quality items when doing routine shopping, compared with 48% of Walmart shoppers.

Shoppers Still Filling Prescriptions at Brick & Mortar Pharmacies

Source: The Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research.

Walmart shoppers were more focused on cost (58%) and prefer to spend as little time in the store as possible, the study found. Also, 37% of the Walmart shoppers said they chose its pharmacy because of low dispensing fees.

Of Walgreens pharmacy shoppers, 22% said they are more likely to focus on time; consequently, they prioritize convenient locations and speed of filling prescriptions over lower dispensing fees.

Rite Aid shoppers were the most price-sensitive, with 68% saying that price is their top priority. Yet Rite Aid customers indicated that they don't mind spending more time in the store to seek the best deals, sales and promotions.

Supermarket shoppers, overall, expressed the least concern with time and experience because the pharmacy is not their main trip driver, according to The Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research. These shoppers are focused on their weekly stock-up trip, and 52% choose their supermarket pharmacy because they can conveniently pick up a prescription at the same time.

"Recognizing differences across retailers and what shoppers are looking for in each store opens up opportunities to further personalize and connect with individual shoppers and allows retailers to make the in-store experience a positive one by knowing what their shoppers' priorities are," explained Craig Elston, senior vice president of insight and strategy at The Integer Group.

Other key findings in the Healthcare and Pharmacy Edition of The Checkout study include the following:

• 67% of baby boomers choose a pharmacy based on their relationships with the pharmacist.

• 50% of people most often rely on their general practitioners for health information.

• 21% of Millennials go online for health information, compared with 15% of baby boomers.

• Half of shoppers are regularly reading nutrition labels to help manage their health and wellness.

Data for The Checkout comes from a national poll conducted by Integer and M/A/R/C in which consumers are asked about their shopping attitudes, shopping behaviors and economic outlook. Topics range from criteria shoppers use to choose retailers and which in-store stimulus is most likely to drive a purchase to factors that might lead shoppers to leave an aisle empty-handed.

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