SAN DIEGO, Calif.—With consumers increasingly looking to purchase online, many retailers have noticed declines in brick-and-mortar sales, and traditional eyewear retailers are not immune to the impact of online sales. A new e-commerce solution from David Kind provides a way for eyecare professionals to create new revenue streams and offer their patients the convenience of an online option.
David Kind, an online provider of high-quality prescription eyewear, has recently announced its ECP Partnership Program. The program enables eye doctors to give customers more options with David Kind’s unique online home try-on experience.
Optometrists receive a dispensing fee for each customer referral that purchases glasses at DavidKind.com. In turn, they perform in-store adjustments to frames, maintaining patient relationships and continuing to oversee the health of those preferring to purchase online.
Optometrists also get their own doctor-branded David Kind site and the collection for display in stores at no cost. For patients initiating a trial at DavidKind.com, the brand’s opticians advise on frame choice and use David Kind’s patented photo measurement technology, in addition to doctor measurements, to ensure the proper fit. Optometrists can realize additional revenue with a dispensing fee for each pair sold in office or via doctor/discovery links and see increased traffic to their practice with the location promoted by David Kind; out-of-network insurance billing is also handled by David Kind.
“In the age of Amazon, consumers expect to purchase most everything online. Our ECP Partnership Program offers a solution for optometrists to help increase sales, maintain patient relationships by providing the highest level of care, ensure fit and quality, and offer even more options to purchase in store and online,” said David Barton, founder of David Kind.
Barton told VM’s CLICK, “We've patented (US Patent #9086582) a system of measuring monocular PD, SEG and OC heights necessary to accurately dispense prescription lenses. We are expanding on it as well to cover additional measurements (panto/vertex). It works similarly to how an optometrist or optician measures you in person while you are wearing the frame the lenses are being made for. Our opticians on staff review every photo and confirm all measurements.”
Barton, a former Oliver Peoples executive, added, “We like working with outside optometrists because it gives customers the complete transparent experience, with measurements in the doctor’s office as well as any after sales service for adjustments. In working with their optician and David Kind, it links up the experience of offline and online retail completely for the patient.
“As you know a trained optician understands where the art (how do you plan on wearing these?) meets science (accurate measurements taken) in dispensing for real world eyeglass use. Our results have been as accurate as the in person method done by a good optician and we believe more consistent than from optician to optician. Our remake rate is exceptionally low—well below industry averages.”
For Mark Bryant, OD, with two locations—Myoptics in Hoboken, N.J. and another, HMC Vision in Manhattan on West 43rd Street—the program has worked well. He said, “We first went live with the program two years ago and it has been a very successful adjunct to our private-pay and insurance transactions. With many patients wanting to purchase online and going to sites that don’t ensure quality or offer advice from opticians, we are often forced to correct 50 percent of these other purchases. The David Kind program gives me more ways to ensure quality and meet patient needs,” he noted.
DavidKind.com lists several other ECPs on its website.
Bryant added, “Infighting between brick and mortar and online retailers doesn’t do anyone a service. There needs to be a working relationship with the three Os to give consumers the best product.” He told CLICK, “I see David Kind as an adjunct to some of the other premium brands we carry; as a second or third-pair sale, it’s easier to convert those patients. David Kind can drive new revenue into the practice.”