Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a account? Log In

Q1 2022 Pharmacy Update

Grace Macej
April 26, 2022
Q1 2022 Pharmacy Update

With Q1 2022 behind us, we dove into foot traffic data to find out how CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid were performing.

CVS and Walgreens Still Seeing Increased Visits  

Walgreens and CVS both saw big successes during 2021, and foot traffic to both brands is still ahead of where it was pre-pandemic; visits the week of April 11th were up 11.8% and 8.8% for Walgreens and CVS, respectively, compared to the equivalent week in 2019. Still, there does appear to be a dip in visits since the beginning of 2022, which could be due to waning numbers of COVID and reduced demand for tests and vaccines. 

Walgreens kept busy during 2021 with new leadership, technological acquisitions, and an expanded healthcare division. Its large-scale alliance with VillageMD makes it the first national pharmacy chain to offer full-service primary care practices with physicians and pharmacists co-located at its stores all under one roof.

In November 2021, CVS announced that starting in spring 2022, it will close about 900 stores across the nation over the course of the next three years. This marks the closure of roughly 10% of the brand’s retail locations. The store closures have been announced to take place during spring 2022 and some closures are already underway. CVS’ decision to downsize reflects its ongoing focus on its omnichannel strategy and an emphasis on in-location services. We previously wrote about how cannibalization influences the choice to close certain store locations and maximize rightsizing efforts.

Revamped Efforts at Walgreens and CVS To Boost Customer Loyalty Paying Off

Last year, Walgreens and CVS both took steps to bolster customer loyalty by offering its customers access to a personalized, omnichannel healthcare experience. As we’ve written about previously, customers are more likely to be loyal to their healthcare provider than to their local pharmacy, so the brands’ transition to focus on the needs of customers as patients is a significant factor in driving growth and bolstering customer loyalty.

So far, while cross-shopping from Walgreens to CVS and from CVS to Walgreens is slightly lower than it was pre-pandemic, neither brand has yet to make significant inroads in convincing its customers not to shop at competing pharmacy chains. But it’s clear that fostering customer loyalty is at the core of both CVS’ and Walgreens’ current growth strategy, so these efforts will undoubtedly raise the bar for the pharmacy sector as a whole going forward.

Rite Aid’s Overall Traffic Is Down, but Visits Per Venue Are Up

Unlike CVS and Walgreens, Rite Aid saw decreased foot traffic in 2021 – perhaps due to the fact that Rite Aid branches are located primarily in areas more affected by COVID, with more than half the stores in California, New York, and Pennsylvania. As a result, the company announced in December 2021 plans to close over 60 stores in the following months, and recently announced plans for an additional 145 store closures.

Already, it looks like Rite Aid’s store fleet consolidation is having an impact on foot traffic performance. Since the beginning of the year, Rite Aid’s Yo3Y visits per venue metrics have been positive, even as the brand’s overall visit numbers lag behind pre-pandemic levels. In March 2022, its average weekly visits per venue were up by 7.2% compared to March 2019. 

Rite Aid’s efforts to rightsize its operations are accompanied by ongoing efforts to boost its in-store product offering with brand partnerships, such as Rite Aid’s recent collaboration with Beyond Meat. Although the brand’s overall visits are currently down in numbers, the fact that visits per venue are up goes to show that Rite Aid is ultimately on the right strategic path.

How will the pharmacy sector’s performance continue to unfold in 2022? Visit to find out.

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Location Intelligence Breakdown: Coffee Caps-Off 2022
Digitally Native Brands Lean Into Brick & Mortar
Washington, D.C. Population Changes & Trends
A Location Intelligence Perspective on Macy’s Rightsizing
Amazon-Powered Shopping: The Future of Brick-and-Mortar Grocery?
Cold Weather, Hot Visits: Diving into Winter Resorts
Wawa and 7-Eleven: Leaning Into the “Slurpee Effect”
2022 and Beyond: Catching Up With McDonald’s & Chipotle
Let’s Have Some Fun! Going Out Is In’s Q4 2022 Quarterly Index Adds Industry Executives to Leadership Team To Drive Company's Next Phase of Growth
5 Emerging Retail Formats: 2023’s Brick-and-Mortar Evolution
Grocery Update: Zooming in on the Lone Star State
2022 Office Recap: The Year of the TGIF Work Week
What Lies Ahead for Brick-and-Mortar Luxury in 2023 Mall Indexes: December 2022 Recap
Looking Back on 2022’s Holiday Shopping Season
Post-Pandemic Migration Trends in New York
Top Retailers for 2023
The Live Sports Advertising Opportunity
Domestic Migration to the Mountain States: Small Shifts with Big Implications
New Year, New Food: 5 Dining Trends For 2023
This is Why Shop-in-Shops Are Everywhere
Super Saturday 2022 Recap
The San Francisco Shift
Grocery Year-End Update: Publix in the Spotlight
Three Ways Retailers Can Think Small to Increase Store Impact
Offline Beauty Is on an Upswing
The Evolving Migration Patterns of New York’s Florida Snowbirds Office Index: November 2022 Recap
How Viral Social Media Trends Can Drive Offline Engagement
Are You Ready for Some Football? Experiential Marketing Shows Promise
Mall and Shopping Center Trends For 2023
Retail Corridors and Indoor Malls: A Holiday Head-to-Head
Placer Bytes: Nike, lululemon, and GameStop Update Mall Indexes: November 2022 Update
Black Friday 2022: Consumers Hear the Call
Digitally Native Brands: Taking Off, Offline
Discount and Dollar Stores Leading the Pack
Turkey Wednesday 2022
Retail’s Evolving Holiday Season
Placer Bytes: Starbucks and Department Stores Ahead of Black Friday
Ulta: A Force to be Reckoned With
College Towns Drive Dining Growth
Foot Traffic Trends Reveal Consumers Ready for Holiday Cheer
How Retailers Can Win Big By Going Small
How Are Consumers Feeling Ahead of Black Friday 2022?
Off-Price, Hibbett, and Dick’s Pre-Holiday Check-in
Ho, Ho, Wholesale: Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s
October 2022’s Retail Rebound
Target and Walmart Ahead of the Holidays
Home Improvement: Leave it to the Pros
Despite Inflation, Holiday Season is Off to a Good Start Office Index: October 2022 Recap Mall Indexes- October 2022 Update
Americans Double Down on Fitness
The State of Grocery
CVS and Walgreens: The Wave Continues
Coffee Chains Brewing Up Visits Spotlight: Pizza Players
What Drove COVID-Era Urban Migration Trends?
Kroger and Albertsons: A Merging of Strengths
Texas Roadhouse Innovations Dishing Up Success
Holidays on the Horizon: Mid-Range and Luxury Shopping
McDonald's and Chipotle's Post-Pandemic Success
Announcing’s Q3 2022 Quarterly Index
5 Hot Restaurant Brands for 2023
Target Finds a Winning Deals Day Formula
Five Trends to Watch for 2022’s Holiday Shopping Season
September 2022 Analysis: A Difficult Month and Time for Optimism
Inflation’s Retail Winners
Five Apparel Retailers to Watch Ahead of the Holidays Spotlight: Wawa’s QSR Pivot Mall Indexes: September 2022 Recap Office Indexes: September 2022 Recap
The Impact of Population Growth on Commercial Real Estate 
Starbucks' New Makeover
There's Somethin' About Pumpkin
Expanding Offline Reach
Breakfast Restaurants are Rising in Popularity
The Power of Labor Day 2022
Tourism in Miami Heating Up
Citi Trends on the Rise
Reaching Rural Consumers Through Retail Media Network
Darden Restaurants Cooking Up Success
The Home Improvement Sector: A Sign of Consumer Confidence
QSR Is Having a Northeastern Growth Spurt
Domestic Migration’s Ripple Effects
A Look Back at Back To School 2022
Kroger Digital Tell-All
The Return of In-Person Networking
The Reinvention of the American Mall Office Building Indexes: August 2022 Recap Mall Indexes - August 2022 Recap
Five Below’s Back to School Success
Plus-Size Fashion’s Staying Power
Placer Bytes: Best Buy & GameStop 
Petco Barking Up the Right Tree
Lipstick Effect Boosts Ulta’s Growth