Back-to-school sales end, but the need for school supplies never stops. Throughout the year kids need extra notebooks, fresh highlighters, and, sometimes, new eyewear!
Whether you’re in the kids’ business or plan to add a kids’ category to your practice, it’s important to keep in mind that back-to-school is year-round. Let’s dive into the lesson plan for maintaining A+ children’s sales all year.
The lessons in your location
If you’re still trying to decide whether a kid’s category is right for you, consider your location. Is there a school nearby? Or day care centers? Maybe there’s a children’s retailer down the street. These businesses indicate a demand for children’s products—including, potentially, eyewear.
Pay extra attention to patients
Know your patients! Building relationships with patients who are parents or are expecting can help you strengthen or launch your kid’s business. Ask patients how the school year is going for their children. And look for hints that their kids may benefit from new eyewear. How are they doing in school? Could they use sport-specific frames? Parents may not be able to answer these questions until the school year is already in full swing, so don’t stop asking after September ends!
Does the competition carry kids’ frames?
It’s always good to keep an eye on the competition—you can learn something! Including how to build your own year-round kid’s category. Visit local practices to see which styles they carry and what services they offer. If local practices aren’t selling much in the way of children’s eyewear, your path is wide open. If they do carry kid’s styles, is there a gap you can fill? Consider whether competitors sell sports eyewear, what sort of age range they currently cover, and the breadth of youth styles they offer. Where can you fit in—and excel—as a kids’ eyewear retailer in your geographic area?
Have fun with kid-friendly décor
Some practices consider back-to-school season the couple months when they need to focus on children’s styles. But oftentimes kids find out they need new eyewear later in the school year. When the local competition shifts away from back-to-school season it’s your time to shine! Keep kid’s displays prominent throughout the school year to grab parents’ interest. Use bright and colorful point-of-purchase materials as a fun way to show which styles you carry. Provide mirrors at comfortable heights for kids so they can get a good view of their frames.
Educate parents on annual screenings
Educate parents on the Pediatric Vision Essential Health Benefit and emphasize the importance of annual screenings. In doing so, make sure to demonstrate your experience to build trust. You can also educate parents in your community through ads in local newspapers, in retail locations, or on social media. Spreading the word in your community can help improve your kids’ business.
School sales don’t have to end in September
We mentioned back-to-school sales earlier. Most practices with a kid’s category will place special emphasis on back-to-school season. But what about a winter break sale for children who realize through the first half of the year that they may need glasses? Or a spring sports promotion for the little leaguers and soccer stars in your community? Make sure parents know you’re available to treat their children’s visual corrective needs year-round.
Carry a mix of frames for every kid
There’s an extensive range of kids’ specialties and styles. Make sure you’re offering enough to cover your community’s younger patients. Carry five-to-six brands at a variety of price points. And don’t forget to cover all ages—from infants to teenagers, kids of every age need eyewear! Your sales consultants can help you determine which brands and styles will work best in your area.
Remember: Most kids aren’t shopping alone. An effective kid’s business can help set up second-pair sales for their parents!