L&T: Special Report

Sep
2013

Lab Usage Survey

Thanks to the Internet, today’s consumers are more informed than ever about their eyewear options. Eyecare professionals and optical retailers need to up their game by offering a better selection of high-value products and educating patients about the benefits of these products.

Consequently, ECPs are demanding more from their wholesale labs. They want the best selection of frames, lenses and contact lenses as well as the best quality workmanship and top-notch service, and they want competitive prices.

For this year’s annual L&T Lab Usage Survey, we polled 152 independent vision care professionals and retailers to find out their perceptions and attitudes about their labs as well as the essential products and services the labs supply to them. We compared their responses with those of respondents from the 2012 and 2011 Lab Usage Surveys. Here are some of the survey highlights. As always, the results are enlightening.   
—Andrew Karp

playpause next
previous

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013

Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013


TOPLINE ANALYSIS

  • About three-quarters (77 percent) of locations work with more than one wholesale lab.
  • Fifty-one percent expect to do more business with wholesale labs in the coming year.
  • The factors in selecting a lab considered very important by most are lens coating quality (89 percent) and lens finishing quality (84 percent) followed closely by lens surfacing quality (84 percent) and quality of drill mounting (80 percent). The factors that were rated “very important” in selecting a wholesale lab are based on the quality of services more so than the characteristics of the labs themselves (e.g., ownership).
  • In contrast, only 12 percent of respondents rated their primary lab as having excellent education seminar offerings; 37 percent rated the lab “good”; 34 percent rated the lab “fair”; 18 percent rated the lab “poor.”
  • AR lenses sold at a price of $90 and above make up 62 percent of respondents’ AR lens sales; 27 percent are $50 to $90; 12 percent are $30 to $50.
  • Forty-six percent of respondents rated their primary lab as having excellent product delivery; 47 rated the lab “good”; 7 percent rated the lab “fair.”
  • Only 37 percent of respondents have ever sent in frame tracing data with an online order.
  • Among respondents who said they are not satisfied with the quality of rimless frames they purchased from their lab, the reasons stated are: The frame was not bench aligned (17 percent); the job took longer than expected (11 percent); drill holes seem to get star cracked more often than not (11 percent); lenses loosen quickly and patients have to return for tightening (28 percent); lens drill holes or lenses appear out of alignment (22 percent); frames and lenses were received loose (11 percent).


METHODOLOGY
20/20’s Wholesale Lab Usage Survey 2013 was conducted during July 2013 by Jobson Optical Research’s in-house research staff. The sample of 152 respondents was derived from the proprietary Jobson Optical Research Database. The 2013 survey was conducted online, and only eyecare professionals at independent locations (one, two or three affiliated practices) who use a wholesale lab for processing lenses or providing other eyewear products and services were qualified to complete the survey. Respondents to the survey were entered in a sweepstakes to win a $200 Amazon.com gift card.

Three years of data is shown for trending purposes. The 2011 survey was conducted online in June of 2011. 148 respondents at optical retail locations completed the survey and were offered a chance to win a $200 American Express gift card as an incentive. The 2012 survey was conducted online in June/July 2012. 174 respondents at optical retail locations completed the survey and were offered a chance to win a $200 American Express gift card as an incentive. To learn more or purchase the full report, visit jobsonresearch.com/marketpulse_wholesalelabs.

—Jennifer Zupnick
Senior Research Analyst

 

|