It can be shocking for parents when they find out their child needs glasses. The lack of selection for children’s eyewear (and prices) at your store might be discouraging and make them want to purchase it online instead.
However, with the right knowledge and approach, you can help parents make the selection of frames for their children in your store itself so it ends up being the best possible experience.
As an optometrist, there are some key steps that you can take to help ensure parents make their purchases in your store instead of online. Here's a guide to help parents choose their glasses in your store, and make this their preferred method of finding the best for their child.
1. Demonstrate the advantages of in-store shopping:
There are major differences between a child's and adult's needs for eyewear, including the size of the frame and the structural and anatomical differences between a child's and adult's facial proportions.
Many eyewear brands simply "shrink" their adult-sized frames instead of designing them specifically for a child's unique facial proportions. This can lead to an improper fit and poor vision, blurriness, headaches, and poor performance in school.
A child’s eyesight is more fragile than that of an adult and needs to be protected from the time the child is born. Children grow at an exponential rate and go through a lot of developmental changes while experiencing unique environmental challenges every day. The importance of children’s eyewear cannot be overstated because it is one of the most important choices that ultimately protects their eyesight, prevents future damage, and improves learning and performance in school.
It's very important to offer glasses that prioritize comfort and make sure to show the parents you keep the comfort of their child in mind.
The LOOKKINO collection by LOOK is developed with children's comfort in mind every step of the way. LOOKKINO frames:
● are all designed for children, starting with the fit of the nose bridge.
● all include adjustable ear hooks for maximum adaptability and customization to each child’s unique face and size.
● only use lightweight materials that don’t feel heavy on a child’s face.
● feature rubber and silicone materials that do not irritate the skin and provide a soft, warm, and stable feel for children.
2. Offer a safe and fun fitting experience for kids and parents:
Children with vision problems often feel self-conscious when they start wearing glasses. This tends to be a greater concern for grade school-aged children and up, and is less of a concern for children still in early education. When a child learns that they have to start wearing glasses, this can disrupt their self-image even further. Change is difficult for anyone, but especially for children. However, a study found that kids do not view other kids who wear glasses negatively; in fact, children tend to consider those who wear glasses as smarter and more honest. A parent's role in helping kids with glasses create a positive self-image is crucial, especially when they’ve just started wearing glasses. As an Optometrist, you can turn that first-time experience into a memorable one, and show parents that they can make the best out of it by bringing their child to your store.
To give children a sense of pride and ownership in the process, encourage parents to allow them to choose their own frames. Providing a fun, comfortable, and lighthearted store experience for children and parents while selecting frames can also help them grow to love their new accessories. Set a good example by speaking positively about glasses and/or having the parent wear them themselves. Additionally, personalized services like helping kids choose the best frames can create an even more positive experience. These efforts will help make your service more enjoyable and inspiring in the eyes of both parents and children alike.
Children are less cautious than adults and tend to be reckless with their possessions. As an eyecare provider, you can address all of the issues with children directly when a family comes in person, and communicate this value in your marketing messaging. You can educate the children on the importance of taking care of their glasses, and give specific advice for very active children. For example, during sports activities, flexible frames or straps can help keep their glasses in place. You can also suggest that parents purchase a backup pair of eyeglasses or lenses with scratch-resistant coatings to ensure that their child remains safe.
You can use these strengths to advertise your business to your prospects, keep them coming back for more, and become a trusted name among parents. Nothing speaks louder than referrals and testimonials from satisfied parents within a community. Building relationships with parents and delivering superior customer service can take you a long way in the optical business. With so much potential for success in family optometry, you should look for every opportunity to capitalize on your knowledge and service.
3. Use Creative Marketing Tactics:
It is important to create a fun and exciting in-store experience for your customers, particularly parents who are shopping for their children. You can also promote this experience by setting up a themed waiting room with games, art supplies, and other activities to entertain young kids while they wait. Utilize window displays to showcase the latest frames and lenses that are geared towards children's vision, health and fashion sense. Use special discounts or promotions as an incentive for parents to bring their kids in for exams. Most importantly, ensure that your staff is knowledgeable in children's eyecare needs so that parents feel confident that their children will receive the best care possible.
Choosing glasses should be something that kids look forward to. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that choosing children’s eyewear is a fun, enjoyable, and memorable experience for everyone involved. And after all - when it comes down to it – your practice is helping maximize visual potential in children while providing a pleasant shopping experience.
Get the FULL Essential Guide to Children’s Eyewear with strategies & practices to help your optical shop level up your approach!
Are you interested in carrying eyewear designed and engineered specifically for children? Contact Villa Eyewear to learn more about LOOK and the LOOKKINO collection.