Profitable lens sales are the backbone of a thriving optical dispensary. If you and your team can hit on the ‘magic formula’ for optimizing your patients’ lens choices and maximizing lens revenues, you’ll get some seriously good news in your optical productivity and profitability.
As always, a clear understanding of “where we are now” is the best starting place, so let’s talk about measuring our lens revenues and product sales mix. The base KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) that we’re exploring in this article are:
- Lens Sales
- Average Lens Price
- Progressive Percentage
Yes, there is a lot more to understand with lenses; profitable lens sales do not just revolve around how many and how much. We need to start with a foundation of basic information before we dive into complex discussions about add-ons, bundling options, and brand performance.
Defining Lens Sales
For clarity’s sake, let’s cover a couple of quick definitions. When we discuss lens sales in EDGEPro, we’re always referring to lenses in pairs, as opposed to singles. “Lenses sold” is understood to mean “Lens pairs sold.” We also stick to our pricing definition as the patient’s out-of-pocket contribution to the purchase. Remember that we’re not (yet) reviewing the total amount of revenue generated by a lens sale in this article. Third party payments for lenses will change our revenue stream, but what our patients are willing to contribute to the purchase is the only part of the sale we are able to influence during the eyewear sales encounter, so that’s the first part of our lens analysis.
Lens sales is a simple count. How many lens pairs did you sell? For our purposes, we do count plano lenses, if they are part of an eyewear order (plano lenses added to an ophthalmic or sunglass frame). For example, BluTech Lenses without a prescription for computer or device use, or polarized plano sunglass lenses would definitely be part of your lens count. However, if you sell a pair of off-the-shelf plano sunglasses to a walk-in customer, that’s a no-count for lens sales.
Your total Lens Sales amount (patient out-of-pocket responsibility) tells you how many patient dollars you’ve taken in for lens sales.
Use your Practice Breakout report in EDGEPro to make these two metrics easy to see and track. Open the Practice Breakout and access the “Lenses” tab as shown here.
Do the Math
Divide your total Lens Sales amount by the number of lens pairs sold to find your Average Lens Price. How do you know if your lens sales are even in the right ballpark? EDGEPro actually makes this really easy. Just access your new EDGEPro Rankings report, and check under the Optical Performance tab. We’ll tell you exactly how you stack up nationally, or within your own region. Do NOT miss out on the “Show Me More” option. You can instantly access complete information about the different breakpoints in any of the Rankings categories (for example: $xxx.xx = 90th percentile).
What Type of Lenses Are You Selling?
King of the lens sales is pretty much always going to be single vision. And you can’t sell a multifocal lens to a patient who only needs a single vision solution. So, let’s set those aside for now as an “it-is-what-it-is” number. What we really want to know today is what’s your progressive percentage, and how does it compare to other multi-focal options, specifically bi-focal or tri-focal lenses. Returning to your Practice Breakout report, you’ll see that each category is broken out individually, based on the type of lens.
You can calculate your overall progressive percentage by dividing the progressive lens pairs sold by the total lens pairs sold. To start the ramp-up to better lens sales, check your progressives against the total number of multi-focal lenses sold. In our demonstration, we can see we have 75 progressives, 2 computer lenses, and 13 bifocal lenses. Of 90 multi-focal lenses, 75 are progressive. That tells us that 83% of the multifocal lens sales we made last month were progressives. (Applause!) A good rule of thumb is to aim for a 5-10% improvement in that percentage until we reach a minimum of 2/3 (66.67%) of our multi-focals sold as progressives. Aim for the sky, though – if you’re at or better-than 2/3, shoot for 3/4 or even 90%. Keep pushing the bar!
There is, without a doubt, a lot more to think about in terms of lens sales Key Performance Indicators. For now, get a solid understanding of your basic lens sale information, and start thinking about ways to move the needle on these KPIs. Work with your team and your lab or lens reps to formulate the best way to speak about the products. Consider how you approach the patients in the exam room, when discussing your recommendations as their eye care professional. You’ve got lots of options. Dial it in so your dispensing flow and your chairside prescribing are working hand-in-hand to deliver the best lenses for your patients and your bottom line.