Maximising revenue by supplementing patients’ spectacles with contact lenses

According to research conducted at the London Business School, patients who wear spectacles and contact lenses are up to 80% more profitable than spectacles-only wearers.1 And patients appreciate professional advice about how contact lenses can be helpful in situations where glasses are less than ideal.

Seeing Things Clearly: The Profitability of Contact Lenses to Eye Care Practitioners, the business school research report, also revealed the following:

  • Contact-lens-plus-spectacles patients are more loyal to their eye care professional
  • At least 60% of contact lens patients also buy spectacles from their eye care professional

Today, many active multi-tasking people opt to give themselves vision correction options by keeping contact lenses on hand along with their spectacles.

But patients who are long-time habitual spectacle wearers and have never tried contact lenses (or have tried them in the past and found them unsatisfactory) may not be aware that technological advances have made today’s contact lenses so effective, comfortable and easy to fit.

Starting the conversation about contacts

You know your patients well and may already be aware of lifestyle factors that make them good candidates for both contact lenses and spectacles.

Here are some questions that you can ask patients to initiate discussions about the benefits of having both contact lenses and spectacles:

  • “Do you spend a lot of time driving?”

Contact lenses conform to the shape of your eye, giving you a wider field of unobstructed vision that may help you drive more safely.2

  • “Are you an avid home cook?”

Many people say that they feel less of the familiar stinging discomfort while chopping onions when they are wearing their contact lenses.2

  • “Do you want to change your look for certain occasions?”

Patients can modify the way people perceive them by switching between spectacles and contact lenses. Some wearers prefer glasses at work and contacts during leisure hours. Others choose contacts for a boost of confidence at events such as speaking engagements and reunions.

  • “Do you enjoy photography as a pastime?”

The view through a camera is much better with contact lenses than with spectacles; there’s also no danger of scratching your glasses against the viewfinder.

  • “Do you regularly enjoy running or other types of physical activity?”

Glasses tend to slip down your nose when you sweat during vigorous exercise. Contact lenses stay in place, whether you’re running, doing yoga or other workouts.

  • “Do you ever wear eyewear other than your standard spectacles?”

Patients with contact lenses may not need expensive prescription safety goggles. Lenses can also be worn under 3-D glasses at the cinema and non-prescription sunglass frames.

After a lengthy, even life-long, habit of wearing only spectacles, a patient may never think about the potential benefits of contact lenses. But you may be surprised at how open they are to giving themselves a choice for each of the activities they engage in.

Start the conversation: Options for your patients mean opportunity for you.


1 Ritson M. Which patients are more profitable? Contact Lens Spectrum. March 2006;38-42.

2 Vision Care Research. 50 reasons for wearing contact lenses. Vision Care Research website. Accessed August 8, 2016.