Vision Care Product News

MAY 2017

Product information for optical people.

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Page 65 of 83

Bu s i n e s s S o l u t i o n s CREATING AN OMNI - CHANNEL SHOP C O M P E T E W I T H O P T I C A L E - TA I L E R S U S I N G T H E S E S T R AT E G I E S T O S E L L O N L I N E . 64 May 2017 VCPN By Bob Main, ABOM With the growth of online eyeglass sales, many eyecare profession- als (ECPs) are researching how to make online frames available through their practice for their pa- tients. Most ECPs are looking for a turnkey option (where a company will build the e-commerce website, manage it, provide the frames and lab work, and ship to patients us- ing a private label format). If that's cost-prohibitive, you can manage it yourself—or at least parts of it. Here are some options to get you started with online retailing. TURNKEY SOLUTIONS Ocuco, Inc. has a very broad-based platform and omni-channel products that support many seg- ments of the optical indus- try, including independent practices, optical retail chains and optical labs. e com- pany's e-commerce platform pro- vides an impressive customized web design solution. e service offers a vast library of eyeglass frame images, a robust virtu- al mirror (via Fitting Box) and provides online marketing ser- vices aer the website goes live. Ocuco has already built various forms of e-commerce websites for many large and small opti- cal companies, including ECPs. While it's important to note that Essilor's My Online Optical has been available for the past several years, the service isnot currently actively signing up new web- sites. According to management, what's been learned as a result of providing a turnkey solution will be used to redesign the platform. HYBRID SOLUTIONS e key to selling eyeglasses on- line successfully (using either a turnkey solution or a hybrid solu- tion where the practice provides some of the services) depends on several key factors. It is import- ant to recognize that even with a turnkey solution, the practice will need to spend time/effort man- aging the e-commerce program and should expect to spend more than $15,000 for a well-designed website. Web traffic and sales need to be monitored daily, the frame mix needs to be managed, and most importantly, the website must be marketed (through social media, pay- per-click advertising and/or SEO). e adage of "build it and they will come" does not always apply to e-com- merce websites. ere are three key com-

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