Holiday overload at CVS: How seasonal decorations can clash with your store design


One of the things I love about my local CVS is how open and airy the store feels. If I recall correctly, it’s part of the group of newer CVS stores that have lower aisle heights, brighter navigational signage, and generally less clutter than the old stores. Unfortunately, all of that changed when the holiday decorations went up a few days ago.

The low and airy aisles are now topped off and crammed with cheesy holiday signs and cheap gift ideas. The walls are covered with yet more holiday products. In all, the place looks just like your typical Walgreen’s or an older CVS, with the products from late-night infomercials seemingly dominating the merchandising strategy.

What went wrong? I’m guessing that CVS sends the same holiday decoration kit, and imposes the same merchandising plan, on all their stores — without regard for the differing store designs across the country. As a result, the generic holiday decorations overwhelm the store design in the newer and cleaner locations. That’s a shame, since it takes away the aesthetic and shopping enhancements that seemingly make the newer stores more enticing the shoppers. Hopefully someone from CVS will eventually take notice, and try something besides a one-size-fits-all approach in the future.