Why Optical Consumers Buy Online

After hearing from optical retailers and optical suppliers how much the Internet has effected their business, I thought I would do an article on what motivates the consumer to purchase on line. Should you be offering this services as well?  After reviewing many optical websites- very few offer this service. You can set an appointment, find out … [Read more...]

VISION FOR THE TOURISTS – OPTICAL SALES OPPORTUNITIES

I just returned from a vacation in Thailand which is a great place to visit. I already knew Thailand was famous for good deals on items like silk clothing, purses and jewelry but did not know that Europeans shop in Thailand for eyeglasses as well. As I strolled along the high street in Kata Noi, Phuket I noticed that optical stores were as … [Read more...]

Ebay -Friend or Foe for the Optical Professional?

Recently I was speaking with an optometrist, who for the first time mentioned the Internet was becoming competition. Lucky for him, it just started to hit him, wherein 10 years ago, I remember losing our first customer (optical retailer) because our products were on Ebay. Eye Bogglers 14,079 Eyeglass items were listed on Ebay- 68,247 … [Read more...]

Discounting Private Pay Optical Patients

We received this email from an office about Private Pay and Discounts. It's a good question, and thought I would post some published and on the internet responses to the same questions. From the sound of it, it is perfectly OK to discount private pay patients, and many large healthcare organizations are doing so. See the below comments and … [Read more...]

Mystery Shopping for the Eyecare Professional

From Wikipedia Mystery shopping or Mystery Consumer is a tool used by market research companies to measure quality of retail service or gather specific information about products and services. Mystery shoppers posing as normal customers perform specific tasks—such as purchasing a product, asking questions, registering complaints or behaving in a … [Read more...]

Retail Owner’s Institute Resources For Eyecare Providers

I was researching facts and found this great retail website, Retail Owners Institute. The Retail Owners Institute® is a web-based resource at www.RetailOwner.com.  They consider themselves as the "foremost self-help resource" on retail finance, The ROI® serves independent retailers worldwide.  With its emphasis on the basics of retail finance, … [Read more...]

Inventory Management- Analyze What is Selling

I don't know how many offices I have asked, how many frames a month do you sell? How many eye exams did you have? The buyer doesn't know. They should know- this is the budget and how you track how many patients have walked out the door without making a purchase. If you sell 100 frames a month at an average of $60.00 a frame, the budget is … [Read more...]

How to Upgrade Your Inventory mix

What! You Ask- now in these economic times- people are cutting back, they are not buying.... First- when talking about upgrading, it doesn't mean to put in every high end frame line. It means carrying sunglasses, exclusive product, designer lines, putting in accessories and or carrying a frame line that is just a little bit more expensive than … [Read more...]

Analyzing Your Product Mix- Keys to Successful Selling

I have never heard from any one office that they are happy with their product mix. I have heard, "I'm bored, how can I sell more, The boards all look alike, there is nothing new", nothing is selling- patients are going on the Internet" and more reasons as to why your product is not moving. If you say this about your Inventory and patients are … [Read more...]

Eye Rewards and Optical Patient Loyalty

We received this email from a Doctor, (who shall not be named). He brought up a very interesting idea on patient loyalty. We are impressed because 1.) He is trying 2.) He is creative 3.) He is thinking out of the box 4.) He recognizes opportunity and wants to capitalize on it. 5.) He's reaching out for ideas and suggestions. Knowing it costs 5x … [Read more...]

What’s in Your Swag Bag?

My dentist has the best Swag Bag. I leave with a personalized bag filled with goodies, toothbrush, floss, toothpaste and coupons! It makes me feel good and appreciated as a customer. Granted he doesn't provide the same type of Swag Bag that celebrities get just for showing up at some event. When I read about what these multi- millionaires get for … [Read more...]

The Weekly Retail Experience

I don't subscribe to many online newsletters. The ones I do subscribe to are inspirational and have great usable information. One newsletter that I actually read and thoroughly enjoy is The Weekly Retail Experience by Doug Fleener of the Dynamic Experience Group. As an example- the last couple of newsletter topics were:  Maximize Your Post … [Read more...]

Marketing Optical Products in a Bad Economic Climate

Savvy marketers can use any situation to advantage. Case in point, the latest milk mustache ad is featuring financial adviser Suze Orman and the tag line is "Milk your budget". The text talks about the great value of milk. The emphasis is on the value rather than actual cost which is pretty smart when shoppers are more budget conscious. The ad does … [Read more...]

Who’s Your Competition?

I was speaking with my mother yesterday about her eyes. She needs a new eye exam and having lost so much money in the stock market is very concerned financially. After some discussion, she decided to go to her OD (who she totally adores) and get her lenses at Costco. I hate to encourage that, but knowing her and her OD, he will give her a break and … [Read more...]

Retail Math for the Optical Retailer- Learn to Grow Your Businesss

True Story: Many years ago, I called an optometrist to ask if I could talk to him about his retail business. He very smartly informed me that he did not retail, he dispensed, and he did not sell. OK- but when you are in the business of selling products for a profit, by definition you are a retailer. As much as these might be a nasty words, retail, … [Read more...]