NEW YORK—Optical sales throughout the U.S. remain substantially above where they were at the same time last year when the country was enduring pandemic shutdowns, according to data from Jobson’s latest Practice Performance Tracker. When comparing the 21st week of 2021, May 17-23, with the same time period in 2020, gross revenue is 20 index points above where it was last year, and it also remains at a higher level than at the same time in 2019.

Little changed in optical sales over the course of last week (May 17-23) other than contact lens sales, which increased at a rate of 3 index points. The four other categories being tracked were either flat (as in the case of exams/refractions), up 1 index point (for gross revenue), or down 1 index point (for frame units and lens pairs).

Following four weeks of declines, optical sales were mixed last week, with two categories up, two categories down, and one remaining unchanged. While contact lens sales remain at the lowest level among all categories, their increase by 3 index points brings contact lenses within only a couple of points of the second lowest category, exams/refractions.

Frame units and lens pairs followed nearly equal trajectories, and while they are both down 1 index point over the past week, they remain nearly on par with an average week in 2019. Gross revenue remains above its average in 2019.

Jobson Optical Research selected 1,500 optical locations that have been operating and reporting their sales to its partners, GPN/EDGEPro and ABB Analytics, since 2019. The index has been rebased to an average week in 2019. Going forward, this new index base will be used as an arbitrary benchmark and assigned a value of 100.

Click here to view the complete Jobson Weekly Practice Performance Tracker