Power Consumer Vs. The Eyeglass Industry

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By: David Armano

If you are into customer experiences and how we consumers are changing our behavior as a result of the digital experience renaissance, you should check out this post over at 3mew

The author of the blog gives a detailed account of how he researched eyeglasses online, saved a boatload of cash and was pretty happy with the experience in the process.

"Without question, I’ll order from each of these places in the future. The prescriptions are tack sharp, the selections are better than the stores and the prices are incredible. Eyeglasses for less than a pair of shoes? Yes, please."

So says the author of the blog.  Now here’s a snippet from an optometrist that posted a lengthy comment in response:

"You may be able to find a silhouette frame a little cheaper online but you are also forfeiting correct measurements and the service provided (future repairs and adjustments, complimentary ultrasonic cleanings, etc). Stores also have more overhead (salaries for qualified and experienced opticians, ulitity bills, etc) so you are paying for more than just the frame…you are paying for the overall service. Also, let’s not forget that by patronizing local stores, you are helping the local economy."

If you have time to read the post and skimming the 33 comments—it’s worth it.  It raises  some interesting thoughts about the customer mindset, especially when they feel like they aren’t receiving value.  And of course it raises questions about what we thought could and couldn’t be done digitally (purchasing eye wear).

It also raises the question of influence.  On one hand, you have an articulate individual talking about a good experience he had, and on the other you have an articulate individual defending his craft.  I think these discussions will continue to intensify given the things we can now do that we were not able to in the past.

Original post: http://darmano.typepad.com/logic_emotion/2006/11/power_consumer_.html