As an independent eye care professional and business owner you don’t always have time to find the best deals for your business. Good deals may be out there but your customers come first, followed by the responsibilities of your business and if you have a family you don’t want to have to show an ID to get in the door. You can get help finding deals that will increase your profits and give you a wide range of services without spending hours searching for them. Many independent eye care professionals don’t know they can get the same deep discounts on purchases, as the chains and franchises, by purchasing through an optical buying group. There are a number of buying groups available and each has their own deal structure and services; this means you need to compare to be able to make an informed decision.
First of all, what is an Optical Buying Group?
An Optical Buying Group is a 3rd party billing service that uses the purchasing power of its members to negotiate discounts, which allow its members to compete effectively with the big chains and franchises. Some buying groups may not pass the entire discount back to you, so the percentage of discount offered varies between the buying groups. Each buying group also has a selection of services and some of the services can save you considerable time and money.
Tip 1: Longevity
How long has the Optical Buying Group been in business? You want to choose a buying group that is a proven provider and longevity shows they provide valuable services that keep their customers coming back.
Tip 2: Services
What services do they offer?
1. Deferred billing terms: When do they expect payment and start charging interest or late fees?
2. Do they have custom account features, things like buying trends for popular frame styles, online account management, etc.? Just like eyewear, one size does not fit all. You want features that will benefit your customers and increase your profits, so make a list of what each buying group offers so you can compare services, features and benefits.
3. Do they offer other tools such as latest industry news, continuing education, business & marketing tips? It will save you time and keep you up to date on industry developments.
Tip 3: Fees and Discounts
Compare membership fees, administrative fees and discount percentages. When a buying group does not have an administrative or membership fee their discount percentage, which is money you save on your purchases, will be lower. Some buying groups also offer additional incentive programs. Compare to see which buying group gives you the best deal. Don’t stop there, contact them and let them compete for your business.
C&E Vision has been in business since 1982, almost 30 years. They offer a wide range of services so you can get what you need to run a better business, including:
- One of the best discount percentages, up to 5% more than other buying groups,
- Billing method choices, including Classic & The RewardsPlus Membership Program, some with a membership fee of zero
- Incentive programs including prompt pay discounts, monthly rebates, state society dues credits and volume discounts
- iDocs – Online account management and customized billing tools
- BeyeRight – industry buying trends for top selling frames
- Virtual Frameboard – stock a virtual inventory and limit your physical inventory
- RU Branded – match frames to customer demographics to help you select for your customers
- IEP Benchmark Analysis – compare your business metrics to the industry
- Get Connected – connect with vendors
- Industry news blog and newsletter
- Optilist for classified ads plus Eyesurf for specialized optical industry search engine
- Continuing Education Seminars and free workshops
Check into the details about their wide range of services and join the C&E Vision Buying Group to get access to technology that will deliver increased profits and innovative services for you and your customers. You can find C&E Vision Buying Group online at http:/www.cevision.com/