The Explosion of Online Optical


In 2011, more than four million adults purchased plano sunwear online and more than 13 million adults purchased contact lenses. (Source:  Vision Council Internet Influence Report, 2011)

Collectively we need to be doing everything we can to ensure that private practice doctors have a place in this growing and evolving online market because it’s no longer a question of “if” we should participate in online sales, but “how” we should participate in online sales?

Online Behavior

Americans are not only turning to their computers to purchase products, but they are turning more and more to their Smartphones to make purchases. Consider the following stats:

  • According to the PEW Research Center for Digital Research, 78% of American adults use the Internet and 71% of them have gone online to research and purchase a product;
  • Nielson found that 44% of American consumers own a Smartphone;
  • found that 79% of Smartphone owners use their phones for shopping-related activities, and of those, nearly half use their phones to look for or use discounts and coupons.
  • Experts in a recent Harvard Business Review article entitled, “The Future of Shopping” estimate that digital information already influences about 50% of store sales, and that number is growing.

Today, there are more than 200 online retailers for your patients to choose from; as an industry, we need to be continuously reevaluating how we keep up with online trends so as to compete effectively in this exploding marketplace.

Learn More

How is VSP working to help independent optometrist capture online sales? Come to a Proof event.

Read More

Today, news stories regularly appear that show the impact of online purchasing and its impact on independent optometrists. Click on any of the story links below to read the latest industry news as it relates to online purchasing.

  • It’s official! Warby Parker opened a flagship store in NYC’s trendy SoHo neighborhood. Not just online anymore, where will the young company go next?
  • Online retailer, is set to launch a 3D Virtual Try-on App in May.
  • More advice for consumers looking to buy eyewear online.