There’s a good chance that your frame boards are becoming a showroom for your patients to try on designer frames and then order them online from a less expensive third party. There's no doubt about it, online frame sales are cutting into your optical practice profit margins.
Luckily, you and your staff have the upper hand because you’ve already developed a relationship with your patients. In order to educate your patients on why they should purchase from your dispensary, you'll need to lay the groundwork starting with procurement and ending with compelling sales messaging.
Here are 4 simple ways to turn patients into dispensary customers.
Many of the frames that your patients tend to purchase online are common styles and popular brands. You can set your optical practice apart from many of the online retailers by offering unique, boutique, or designer frame designs and colors. Maintaining a mix of different frame styles, colors, and brands will help you cast a wider net and provide a frame for your patient’s unique style.
Make sure that you’re doing your research on popular trends and frame styles to update your frame boards regularly to keep patients coming back.
Poor pricing practices are generally the driving factor behind your patients' search for other frame options. Always assume that your patients are comparing your prices against online prices, and price your frames to maintain a competitive advantage to online shops. Use frame catalogs to give you accurate wholesale pricing, so you can adjust your prices to align with your patients' budget and still give you room to boost your dispensary profits through increased sale volumes.
Even if your competitors are offering better rates than you are, you can still make your frames more affordable by offering discounts, promotions, and services that could justify the purchase. If you can tack on a second pair of frames at a discounted price, explain the advantage of buying multiple frames.
Use your patient’s trust to your advantage and explain prescriptions and how the lens type and fitting could help them see more clearly. Because you know the patient's unique needs already, you can coordinate with your optician to ensure the patient is getting the frames they need quickly and without errors. Also, make sure customers know about your return policy, complementary adjustments, and other perks that come with buying from your dispensary.
You can’t be in the exam room and in the showroom at the same time. Unfortunately, you can’t clone yourself either. Luckily, you’ve hired some skilled employees to help you meet your optical practice goals.
To help motivate your staff into meeting your practice’s sales objectives, assign individual sales goals and offer incentives for when they meet the goals. These goals will help hold your employees accountable and provide a bit of friendly competition.
To increase your optical dispensary profits in 4 weeks, download our free ebook.