Eye Care Centers See New Possibilities During COVID-19

“Is my business considered essential?” That is a question many of our franchise clients asked themselves. One answer we heard, “Well if Burger King is considered essential, we are too!”

Where eye care centers are concerned, providing their respective communities with service goes well beyond conducting annual exams. Since the pandemic began, the demand for repairs, contact lens refills and adjustments to aid the eye care needs of frontline workers increased. And, as children shifted to virtual learning, a solution needed to be found for dealing with digital eyestrain – quickly. But as new social distancing protocols went into effect, how did high-touch services like eye care centers pivot themselves?

Staying Positive, Proactive, and Focused

Above all, the business owners who thrived through the pandemic maintained a sense of positivity and protection for both their patients and their staff. At the onset of the pandemic, many took advantage of the downtime to take care of neglected administrative work, retrain their staff, and also gain new education that was now accessible through online webinars. They then turned any setbacks into opportunities by reinventing services – such as the scheduling of private appointments and shopping sessions for patients – to ensure a safe and confident experience. And while other eye care businesses kept their doors closed in the crisis, those who persevered got the chance to capture new patients. Through it all, the stores never lost sight of their business goals and made sure that every member of their teams were on the same page.

This is exactly what Glenn Spina, CEO of Emerging Vision, attributes to the rebound of their independently owned franchise locations:

As a result of their ingenuity, many of our eye care centers across the country have seen double-digit store growth over the previous year. These resourceful opticians and optometrists have done an incredible job of quickly enforcing new safety protocols to ensure confidence in our high-touch business, so that patients can feel confident and safe. With the flexibility and support of our vendor partners, we are swiftly meeting communities’ essential eye care needs during these uncertain times.

Being Rewarded for Staying the Course 

And for those who are proactively creating an ideal shopping environment, their efforts continue to pay off. Several months ago, Vision Monday pointed out that while eye care practitioners had been currently seeing fewer patients, those who did visit a practice were there to make a purchase, as proven by the fact that conversion rates were higher than they were last year, according to the Jobson COVID-19 performance tracker. In the end, the hard work these business owners performed provided a sense of normalcy to their communities. And that is essential.

 

The EGC Group continues to take satisfaction in helping these brands make their comebacks, and to be a small part in making sure patients may find a safe place to get the essential health care services they need. If you operate an essential business, we offer a versatile suite of services that can help your enterprise come out of the setback, stand out, and get noticed. Check out our “Work page to see samples of our web, video, and a variety of other content. If interested, or have further questions, contact us to learn more.