CVS Pharmacy continues to make a concerted effort to transform its stores, with the goal of fostering a better customer experience.

The retailer on Wednesday officially unveiled a new store design to enhance the retail customer experience with a new assortment of healthier food, health-focused products and expanded beauty selections, paired with informational signage throughout the store to help customers discover new offerings. The retailer hosted an event at The Garage in New York City on Wednesday to showcase the enhancements firsthand.

According to CVS, combined with its innovative digital programs, these changes represent the “next evolution of the customer experience at CVS Pharmacy.”

“Pharmacy is the heart of our business and our focus on providing care to patients and customers defines everything we do in our stores,” said Helena Foulkes, president of CVS Pharmacy and executive VP, CVS Health. “Our new retail offerings leverage our deep expertise in health to enhance our customers’ shopping experience. The same guiding principles that led to the removal of tobacco from our stores extend to our commitment to deliver the most innovative health and beauty solutions.”

The new store formats and deeper focus on expanded health, healthier food and beauty assortments are key elements of the next phase of the front-store growth strategy, which was first introduced in 2015. Today there are more than 800 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide with this elevated design and assortment and over 3,400 with expanded food and beauty offerings. The latest improvements are intended to drive growth in categories that are most closely tied to the company’s health-focused purpose and expertise, while delivering a “shopping experience that no other online or brick-and-mortar retailer can replicate.”

Foulkes discussed these changes in detail during CVS Health’s December analyst meeting. At the time, the elevated design was in approximately 400 stores, and the results were tangible. For these stores, Foulkes reported improved run rates in consumables, up 9%, as well as beauty (up 4%) and health (up 2%).

CVS’ strategy is not a one-size-fits-all, Foulkes noted on Wednesday however. “We will continue to evolve the store experience as we test and learn in order to meet the needs of our customers in the ever-changing retail landscape,” she said. “As we identify key elements that resonate, such as new product assortments, health services and other in-store experiences, we will find ways to bring them to life in CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide.”

Major in-store changes

CVS Pharmacy is rolling out major changes to as many as 70 new and existing stores this year, with plans to expand to several hundred more in 2018. The new, health-focused formats have 100 feet of new merchandise in health, beauty and healthier food and use a streamlined layout to highlight themes that make shopping easier. “Discovery zones” in key health categories take a holistic approach to care and product selections, and customers are guided by informational signage with guidance to make finding the right solution easier.

CVS Pharmacy is also vastly expanding its offerings throughout…