How to Open a Drug Store

Open a Drug Store
Open a Drug Store

How to Open a Drug Store. A drug store is small business opportunity that's attractive to an entrepreneur or pharmacist. To open a pharmacy, obtain the proper licenses, understand inventories and business practices and select the right location to attract a steady customer flow.

Things You'll Need

  • State license
  • Franchise (if applicable)

Decide on a local ownership or a franchise. Open a pharmacy franchise inside a department store or grocery store. Certain drug stores often associate with chain stores such as Wal-Mart.

Choose a franchise or free-standing location based on good business practices for customer flow, parking and location.

Complete in-state pharmacy applications. You must meet certain requirements to open a drug store, and these differ from state to state.

Design the location based on pharmacy best practices. As a pharmacist, you know the importance of a patient consultation center and proper work space and storage. As a non-pharmacist businessperson, make sure you understand exactly what pharmacies require.

Hire qualified staff. Make sure pharmacists and assistants meet state certification requirements. Some states require a pharmacist-in-charge.

Execute an effective marketing plan. Drug store associations and marketing experts in the field can offer advice specific to this area of specialty.

Ensure the presence of effective security. Drug store operations handle controlled substances, and you need to make sure you protect the premises and employees.

Tips & Warnings

  • Franchise operations often come with marketing plans and support already built into the agreement.
  • Make sure you and your staff have updated medical insurance, Medicaid plans and information on how they affect the dispensing of prescriptions.
  • Independently-owned drug stores are not as common as they once were, but they can still succeed. Join an association that supports this kind of pharmacy operation.
  • Remember that good business practices such as planning, cash flow, inventory management and taxes are just as important to a pharmacy as to any small business.

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