VSP Allows Members to Buy Single Vision Prescription Glasses Online Through Eyeconic

RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif.— Eyeconic, an online eyewear store for VSP Vision Care members and providers, today announced the new ability for VSP members to buy single-vision prescription glasses and the start of a test that may soon also allow the use of VSP benefits on eyeconic.com.

Since the launch of Eyeconic in 2011, both VSP members and non-members could use the website to buy contact lenses, browse eyewear and sunwear and find a VSP doctor. While selling prescription eyeglasses via the website has always been part of the plan for eyeconic.com, it is only now that the capability is being fully implemented, according to a VSP spokesperson.

Eyeconic was launched in 2011 in response to the rise of online optical shopping to give consumers the ability to purchase contacts, browse eyewear and find a local VSP doctor based on the brands they carry. Eyeconic’s inventory features Marchon and Altair brands exclusively, and all prescription orders from eyeconic.com are being processed by the VSPOne Sacramento lab, the VSP spokesperson told VMail.

Today, all shoppers, whether VSP members or not, are able to purchase contact lenses on eyeconic.com, but only VSP members can buy single vision prescription and non-prescription sunglasses, while taking advantage of their 20 percent frame discount. With the exception of contact lenses and non-prescription sunwear, every eyeconic.com purchase ships to the member’s VSP doctor, enabling them to maintain a relationship with patients who prefer to shop online while ensuring proper fitting and adjustments by the eyecare professional, the company said.

“Last year, nearly $1 billion were spent online on optical products. That’s a staggering number brick-and-mortar practices cannot afford to ignore,” said Matthew Alpert, OD, of Alpert Vision Care in Woodland Hills, Calif., and VSP Global board member. (VSP’s $1 billion was derived from data in the following sources: The Vision Council, Consumer Barometer Dec. 2011; The Vision Council, Internet Influence Report 2011; Consumers Digest, Special Investigative Report: Optical Illusion, August 2008.)

“Unlike other online optical sites, Eyeconic bridges the gap between the convenience and value of online shopping and the expert service of private practice care. That’s a win for both our patients and VSP doctors. Consumer shopping habits are changing, and private practices that want to thrive in the new climate need to get into the online marketplace to evolve with them. Eyeconic is an easy and free way to do that,” Alpert said.

In addition, the company has also started a test with VSP Global company employees in the Greater Sacramento area that may soon also allow all 56 million VSP members to use VSP benefits to purchase contact lenses and prescription eyeglasses on eyeconic.com, the spokesperson told VMail, explaining that VSP members will be able to take advantage of their full benefits via eyeconic.com, not just the 20 percent frame discount. For every prescription purchase made on eyeconic.com using VSP benefits, VSP doctors will be compensated for their professional services, including their usual frame and lens dispensing fee.