Doing Business in Optical’s Local Markets

Welcome back to dba: Doing Business in Optical’s Local Markets, to this first edition of the e-newsletter. “Back,” because our prototype edition went out in October. “First,” because this is the launch of our regular monthly editions. In addition to the select section of dba found on this page, you can view the entire January 2013 edition at Specifically addressing local and regional retail/optometric businesses, dba focuses on their challenges and successes.

The latest issue features profiles on Texas State Optical in the Eye-Trepreneurs section and on The Edward Beiner Group’s digital marketing campaigns in the eMedia section. In this month’s dba q&a, executives from Emerging Vision, Rosin Eyecare, Accurate Optical and Virginia Eye Institute explain how they encourage good electronic word-of-mouth on customer review websites. Also, an online program enables EyeOne’s seven locations to instantly tell patients how much their managed care plan will cover and how much they’ll have to pay out of pocket.

This month we also introduce regular dba contributor, Jay Binkowitz, optometric business consultant and president/CEO of GPN, exclusive provider of business software solution The EDGE.

Unique to this print edition of dba is dataPoint below, where you’ll learn what research studies have determined patients value most in their eyecare experience. For the rest of dba, go to, and sign up for your own e-mail subscription while you’re there.

What Do Patients Value Most in Their Eyecare Experience?

When it comes to eyecare experiences, basic customer service issues are of primary importance, regardless of location or size of the optical chain, according to a recent report.

Responding to patients’ questions and treating them courteously were among the most important factors related to the eyecare experience, according to a study conducted by eyecare feedback company, focalCenter. The report, Key Drivers of the Patient Experience, explored patient perspectives when receiving eyecare, purchasing eyewear and utilizing their managed vision care plans.

When it comes to eyecare, two of the factors that ranked highest when communicating with both doctors as well as with staff remain the same—the patient’s questions are answered and the patient is treated with courtesy. The third most important factor among the top three were different for doctors than for staff. “Tests and results are explained” was cited among the top three highest ranking factors when communicating with doctors, while acting “professionally” was among the top three for communicating with staff.

The graphs represent the top three out of eight most important factors for doctor’s communications and the top three out of nine most important factors for staff communications:

The study was conducted by convening focus groups representing participants aged at least 18 years who within the past six months had an eyecare visit, utilized insurance for their eyecare (medical or vision plan) and obtained new eyewear. While the data above represents only a small portion of the results, the extensive report features a host of information related to what patients value most and the key drivers related to their eyecare, eyewear and managed care plans.

Source: The report Key Drivers of the Patient Experience, produced by focalCenter Insights and distributed by Jobson Optical Research,