You want the process of getting new glasses to be a fun and entertaining experience for your patients, right? But are you sure that is the experience you are providing them? Sometimes, shopping for new glasses can be worse than shopping for a pair of jeans. Just like any other shopping experience, your customers can feel stressed about making the right choice in terms of fit, flatter, and style.
What do you think is the main source of this stress? Is it dealing with a pushy salesperson, adjusting to the new prescription, or simply finding time to go pick out the frames?
We aimed to find out what triggers the shopping stress in patients by surveying our friends, family, and acquaintances. We had them rank the top 5 frustrations when getting new glasses and here is what our friends tell us stresses them the most:
Optical Dispensing: 5 Things Patients Hate About Getting New Glasses
1. Cost of Getting New Glasses
This aspect is the one our respondents are the most worried about and it’s hard to know the long term cost of the eye wear. Seeing as opticians understand the full value of new frames, they should take time to explain the durability of the lenses or any additional coatings, help customers understand their insurance coverage, and only show them options in their price point. Simply start with the budget conversation and walk customers through your optical dispensary after that.
2. Choosing the Frames
When picking out new frames, many questions are likely to pop up in your patient’s head: What kind of shape do I want? How about the color and the size? What if the pair of frames is too heavy or not comfortable? Is buying designer ones really worth it? Am I going to wear them all the time, or just for work, or to drive? Do they look good on me?
That’s why choosing frames can become stressful and demotivating. Ask questions about your patients preferences in terms of: the shape/style, the weight, the feeling, the size and color, the material, and the designer. Usually, patients feel overwhelmed and don't know where to start, so asking pointed questions can help clarify their preferences.
3. Frames color and shape
Among all of the attributes listed above, choosing the shape and color of the frames is the third most stressful thing for your patients, mainly because picking a color and a shape is about looking good and being confident. Help them understand how to choose the frames according to the shape of their face (round, oval, oblong, diamond, square…). If color is a concern, show them how to choose either the cool-toned or warm-toned route and pick the color that suits them the best or complements their skin, eye, or hair shade. Maybe even show photos of celebrities with frames that complement their faces to keep conversation flowing. Outgoing staff members can also be an in-store representation! Once they get into it and see the differences that the right shape/color make on a person, they’ll be more excited to make the same decision for themselves.
4. Finding Time to Pick Out New Frames
When getting new glasses, your patients have to slot going to the store into their timetable twice; First to pick out new frames, and then to pick them up. People are busy and impatient in a world filled with instant gratification, so having to wait too much is frustrating. Some of our respondents said they would love it if they could pick up their glasses during their lunch hour, which gave us an idea. Set up one or two days a week that your shop is open from 11:30 – 1:30 for patients to pick up their glasses. Then work out an arrangement with a local restaurant to offer discounts to your patients. Then they can swing by, pick up their glasses, grab a quick and inexpensive lunch, and then go about the rest of their day.
5. My Optical Shop Doesn’t Have the Selection I Want
Most of your patients don’t do any research before going and picking out new frames, but it's very frustrating for those who have researched to arrive excited and not find the selection they want. Your patients have probably already done some research and found glasses their favorite celebrity wears, or the latest style they like. But of course, it’s not realistic for every shop to carry every possible line. But it wouldn’t hurt to let your patients know which lines you carry through your website, social media, or somewhere else so that they can research within those brands before coming in.
We hope that with this information you can be fully prepared to make your patient’s frame buying experience a pleasant one. We're sure that these five points are just scratching the surface of why patients don’t like frame shopping. Let us know any other common complaints you hear about frame shopping from your customers and how you improve their experience in the comments below!
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