The U.S. online eyewear market was valued at USD 338 million in 2017 and is expected to grow to a lucrative rate over the projection period on account of growing demand for spectacles and contact lenses in geriatric population coupled with an increasing prevalence of age related vision problems. Online portals offering services such as virtual trial of frames is likely to drive the market growth for designer sunglasses. Availability of numerous brands under single portal enables the consumers to compare and try products in real time which ensures proper fitting as well as aesthetics of the products which is one of the major factor involved into purchasing of eyewear’s across all age groups. Additionally, implementation of Fairness to Contact Lens Consumers Act in 2004 has drastically changed the online sales of eye wear and is likely to benefit the market. The act provides right to have a copy of prescription in order to purchase contact lenses through online portals.
U.S. online eyewear market revenue split, by type, 2017 (% share)
Penetration of IoT in the U.S. market has benifited the population in a very significant manner. Online portals provide various offers such as 365 days warranty on all products, free shipping & return policy, as well as money back gurantee. These serives are projected to attract more of working population to buy eyewear from online portals as these portals provide one stop solutions to all the problems faced while purchasing eyewear. More than 70% of the U.S. population use Piano or Rx sunglasses which makes the U.S. a very bright market for the sale of eyewear. Shifting preferences of consumers towards fashionable eyewear such as designer spectacles and sunglasses is expected to drive this industry over the study period. Additionally, rise in disposable income and increased spendings on acesories is considered to fuel the online sales of eye wear by 2025.
The E-commerce industry in the U.S. grew by 16.0% in 2017 compared to 2016. In 2017, consumers spend around USD 450 billion on online retail purchases compared to USD 390.9 billion in the previous year. Lucrative growth of this market in the U.S. is expected to fuel the demand for online purchases of eye wear.
Segmentation by Type
• Contact Lenses
In terms of product, glasses segment dominated the market in 2017 and is expected to maintain its dominance over the forecast period. Growing demand for sunglasses from young adults and adults is likely to drive the market demand for glasses in future. Additionally, rising number of vision disorders prominently in working population of the U.S. is driving the online sales of spectacles. Availability of various brands such as Ray-Ban, Oakley, Persol, Polo Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Versace and various other brands by majority of the online retailers is further fueling the market growth for sunglasses. Moreover, trend of using spectacles with no power as a style statement coupled with virtual trials of spectacles on websites is likely to drive the U.S. industry for glasses.
Contact lenses contributed minor share in the market contributing around 15% of the overall revenue share. The segment is expected to show steady growth on account of availability of wide product portfolios across majority of online eyewear providers. Contact lenses contributes around 27% of the overall eyewear sold annually in the U.S., estimating around 85 million units annually. Online sales of contact lenses are primarily driven by growing demand for colored lenses as well as daily disposable lenses in young adults. Moreover, concerns regarding compatibility of contact lenses is one the hindering factor for market growth for contact lenses.
The market for online eyewear in the U.S. is fragmented in nature on account of numerous players in the market. Lucrative growth of e-commerce in the U.S. has led to entry of various new players. Highly efficient distribution networks of established players in the eyewear industry has led to a continuous supply of products to these online players. The eyewear industry is highly dynamic in terms of design and product innovation. Some of the players in the industry include LensCrafters, ZENNI OPTICAL, Frames For America, Inc., EYEBUYDIRECT.COM, Warby Parker, and Motion Global Limited. Key players in the market are concentrating on providing elite brands and designer frames for sunglasses as well as spectacles in order to fulfill the frequently changing demand patterns of buyers.
Research Support Specialist, USA