Buying prescription spectacles is a tedious job globally. I remember a friend of mine in France who had to wait for a month before she could get an ophthalmologist appointment so that she can get the right prescription. Then she had to wait for a week before she got an approval from her student health insurance for reimbursement of the expenses. Only after that she could go to the store & order her glasses. The whole ordeal cost her 6 weeks and €200/-
Surprisingly, things are much more affordable and faster. You could walk into any store without any prior appointment order the glasses and collect it the next day. Also a decent looking prescription glasses could be purchased in 1,500/- ($25/-)
Yesterday I purchased my new glasses from Lenskart and was utterly delighted by the whole experience.
- Convenience: I live in the outskirts and taking time off for 2 visits was difficult & expensive (time & fuel). Ordering online and getting it delivered at home via courier was the perfect.
- Technology: It might be small, but I liked their tool which uses the laptop webcam to capture the face, then size it right using a credit card (for the dimensions). This way I could virtually try various frames and how I would look in them.
- Price: I paid almost half the price (where else could you get the same pair of spectacles at $10). I googled and found that almost perpetually they have some promotional/discount scheme or the other running.
- Promptness: I got the frame delivered in 30 hours flat, all this without even moving a finger
- Service: I was very skeptical ordering prescription glasses online. Hence I logged off midway. However their representative called me up and explained the entire process. They even offered to send their ophthalmologist at my residence for measurement & trial (250 trial spectacles) for a nominal price of 100/-. What more could I ask for.
- Packaging: The entire look & feel of the box, packaging, the website was professional. They had a welcome to Lenskart family card also in the courier along with a plastic card printed with my prescription etc.
- No-Cross selling: Unlike the physical stores, they were more interested in providing me with what I want, rather than selling contact-lens, cleaning fluids and other junk that I never asked for.
What they can improve on:
- T.V. Ads: I must say their TV ad puts me on “Stalker Alert!!!” How creepy will it be if a guy tries to introduce himself with a girl wearing 100 different spectacles & sun-glasses
- Pricing & Positioning: Spectacles, like watches are fashion accessories. Hence like the luxury goods, people feel good when they shell out high prices. HMT (Indian watch maker) faced a lot of trouble when they tried to create economy/popular brands. Giving too many discounts often damages the company’s bottomline and creates wrong expectations in the mind of the customers.
- Intuitive UI (user interface): Their cart did not load properly because of which I had an issue with check-out. Also who needs so much pop-ups, banners etc.
- Real-world & online connect: There is no way to check & confirm the precision of the glasses. Hence a connecting with the physical world would be welcome to address anxious first time customers.