Optical Sales: Presentation Is Everything

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By Katie Gilbert-Spear, OD, MPH

Many patients come to your office and plan to buy their eyewear from you. So in addition to keeping exams running smoothly and efficiently so that they have enough time to browse and shop, it’s important to make the eyewear presentation process simple and easy so patients don’t become overwhelmed. If they decide to leave before making the purchase, it not only delays the sale but may lead them to shopping elsewhere.

Patients are paying for your team’s expertise in vision and style. Following these steps will help you keep it simple and capture the sale.

Train the optical staff for success. Put systems and routines in place to allow them to be confident in their conversations with patients. Script out these dialogues and practice them at staff training time so they are prepared for these interactions with patients, questions that may arise and how to keep the selection process quick and painless.

Present two, high-quality lens options, not three. Don’t overcomplicate the decision-making process. Staff should explain that your office offers the best of what’s available so that patients can experience the best vision possible.

Focus on the benefits, not the brand. While patients may be familiar with some brand names from consumer advertising, it’s most important to home in on why the recommendation is made and how it will impact their vision. Staff should emphasize how blue-light filtering technology can cause less stress on the eyes when spending long days on the computer or how progressive lenses can be great for patients who spend their time going indoors and outdoors all day long.

Present insurance contribution as a positive. While insurance won’t likely cover the entire eyewear purchase, the staff can still help get the patient excited about the potential of using this allowance towards a purchase. Show patients that it is a credit that allows them to get the pair of frames that they might have thought were out of reach, or that they can use this as a savings that brings down their out-of-pocket cost.

Offer a complete pair value option as a last resort. Stocking value frames can help you capture those sales that are just about to slip out the door. Create a frame and lens value option—with basic lenses, which are edged in-house for the most profit.

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