L&T: Special Report

May
2014

Lenses by the Numbers

As 20/20 readers know, spectacle lenses and lens treatments are typically the most costly component for consumers who purchase a new pair of eyeglasses. That’s why many patients are becoming more discerning about the lens products they buy. They are educating themselves about lens options, often by accessing information through social media and other forms of marketing by lens and sunglass companies. As patients become more lens savvy, eyecare professionals are getting better at dispensing and selling lenses. This is evident in 20/20’s 2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey, which shows how sales are increasing overall as well as in several major lens product categories. The following survey highlights offer an interesting glimpse of current trends in lens sales. For the complete report, contact Jennifer Zupnick, senior research analyst at jzupnick@jobson.com. —Andrew Karp

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2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey

2014 Premium Lens MarketPulse Survey


TOTAL SALES
Compared to three years ago, 56 percent of retailers said that spectacle lenses and treatments made up a larger percentage of their location’s total gross dollar sales in 2013. This percent has increased from last year when 51 percent of retailers reported an increase. In 2013, 54 percent said pricing on spectacle lenses and treatments has increased compared to three years ago as well, and 42 percent said that Rx sun lenses as a percentage of total dollar sales increased over the same period.

LENS SALES
When asked to rank lens design by popularity, standard or aspheric single vision was ranked most popular by 51 percent of retailers. Customized or personalized progressives were ranked most popular by 27 percent, and standard progressives were ranked most popular by 14 percent. Half of retailers (51 percent) said less than 3 percent of single vision Rxs sold are digitally enhanced.

Two-thirds (65 percent) of retailers said that customized or personalized progressive lenses made up a greater proportion of their total lens sales in 2013 than they had versus three years ago. Comparatively, 34 percent said standard progressive sales had increased over the last three years, while 28 percent said that sales of bifocals and trifocals had decreased as a percentage of total lens sales over the last three years, respectively. Seventy-seven percent prefer lab brands over lab private labels. This is an increase from 72 percent last year.

PROGRESSIVES
On average, retailers said that 36 percent of progressive lens sales are personalized. Seventy-five percent of respondents said they are very or extremely satisfied with the personalized progressive lenses they dispense. This is down from 87 percent last year.

COMPUTER/OFFICE LENSES
Most retailers surveyed (61 percent) say that computer/office lenses make up an insignificant percentage (10 percent or less) of their total lens pair sales.

LENS MATERIALS
When asked to rank lens material by popularity, polycarbonate was ranked most popular by 52 percent of retailers. Standard plastic was ranked most popular by 26 percent. Glass was ranked least popular by the most retailers (74 percent). Forty-seven percent of retailers said their 2013 super high-index lens sales increased as a proportion of total lens pair sales compared to 2012. Forty-six percent and 44 percent said the same about their polycarbonate lenses and Trivex lenses, respectively. Sixty-five percent said their mid-index lens sales had stayed flat. Glass was the worst performer, with 40 percent saying that glass made up a smaller proportion of their total lens sales in 2013 than in 2012.

HIGH-INDEX LENSES
When asked to rank high-index lenses based on popularity, 63 percent ranked 1.67 as most popular, and 26 percent ranked 1.6 as most popular. Comparatively, 1.74 was ranked least popular by 52 percent of retailers.

LENS TREATMENTS
An impressive 77 percent of retailers surveyed said they had experienced an increase in AR lens sales as a proportion of total lens sales in 2013 versus 2012. Sixty-eight percent saw an increase in polarized lenses, and 61 percent saw an increase in photochromic sales over the same period. For 39 percent of retailers surveyed, tinted lens sales stayed about the same versus the year before. Fifty-nine percent of retailers said they offer a new AR lens that also reduced blue light.

IMPACT OF REFRACTIVE SURGERY
Thirty-eight percent of retailers agree that because of the increase in patients having refractive surgery, their sales of reading glasses have increased, while 23 percent say specifically high-powered lens sales have decreased. Fifty-eight percent, however, say sales have not been affected at all.

Methodology

This survey was conducted by Jobson Optical Research’s in-house research staff. This sample was derived from the proprietary Jobson Optical Research database. Data collection was conducted in February 2014. Only the responses of independent optical retailers are included in the report. The 2014 sample consists of 248 independent optical retailers. All participants were recruited by e-mail, and the questionnaire was completed online. Three years of data is provided for comparisons where possible.

—Jennifer Zupnick, Senior Research Analyst,
Jobson Optical Research

DIGITAL MEASURING DEVICES
Thirty-five percent of retailers said that they have a digital measuring device in their office. Among them, 30 percent say they use it 65 percent to 100 percent of the time. Most (59 percent) are tablet-based.

LENS PACKAGES
Forty-three percent of retailers say they use package pricing. The average price of a lens-only package was $248.46.

OUTDOOR EYEWEAR
Fifty-six percent said they have increased discussions with their patients on the importance of UV and HEV-absorbing eyewear for outdoor use, and 45 percent have actually written more Rxs for them in the last three years. Fifty-five percent said they have increased discussions with their patients on the importance of children’s outdoor eyewear/sunwear, and 31 percent have actually written more Rxs for them in the last three years. ■

 

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