Shopping online has clearly taken off. It’s easy. You can do it in your pajamas or straight from your phone. One of the latest things to hit the Web shopping scene is eyewear. Sure, you could always order a pair of sunglasses online, but it is virtually impossible to tell the exact fit, frame, feel and look. It’s not as if there is any real sizing out there to go by. And these accessories sit directly on your face, people will literally be staring at them. Which is why the real players in the eyeglass e-commerce space are doing things a little differently.
A video posted by DAVID KIND (@davidkind) on Jan 1, 2014 at 8:33am PST
Recognizing that the online shopping experience is not the ideal platform for selling luxury eyewear, David Kind tackled the problem head on, actually creating a better experience than what a shopper might get in a store (or worse yet, at a mall kiosk). They do this by offering a fast and easy process online that results in clients being able to try out different frames from home for almost an entire week, really letting you get a good feel for the ones you want. The quick video above illustrates what the company envisions the experience to be like.
For as long as pretty much anyone can remember, shopping for prescription eyeglasses has pretty much been the same. Visit your optometrist for an exam, spend the next hour or so trying on every pair of frames within reach, then hope for the best while you wait two weeks for the final product. With David Kind, the process is straightforward. Enter in minimal information, answer a few questions about shape preference, prescription strength and colors you may not like. Follow that with either uploading a picture of yourself or grabbing one from Facebook, and you’re off and running.
The site will show you several different frames and ask you to choose three that are to your liking. Then a “personal optician” will hand-select three more that they think you may also enjoy, for a total of six. Going through the experience, we were surprised by how fast everything processed. The time from selection to receipt of the sample set was under three days. In the mirrored box sat six different styles in various colors, each with an accompanying card for any notes you’d like to make for yourself or your stylist.
Of the six pairs that arrived, we would have easily bought four, felt neutral about the fifth and only actually disliked one. But the best part was that with six days to try on six pairs, by the end of the process we were 100 percent confident in the chosen frames. After the try-on period, simply use the note cards to indicate which set (or sets) you would like, slide in a copy of your prescription if you need one and send it back. All of the shipping in both directions is complimentary.
Now, roughly two weeks after the final frames’ arrival, we have put them to the test. We wore them for multiple day-stretches, in the office, outside, night and day. The glasses (we wound up with Trenton) are very comfortable, light and fit with just the right amount of grip. All of the eyewear is “handcrafted in Italy or Japan,” while the lenses are made in California with a “26 fit point system.” And for those really into the technology behind eyewear, the brand (which is helmed by three minds hailing from Oliver Peoples, by the way) says they use “Trivex and High Index HD digital technology to expand your field of vision and improve clarity.”
One of the biggest new areas of opportunity in the luxury e-commerce space is in the experiential. How do you create a high-end luxury experience for someone shopping online? If this is any indicator of the tip of what is to come, we are excited for what's next.
David Kind eyewear starts at $295 and every pair is anti-glare, anti-reflective, anti-scratch, oil resistant, water resistant, and UV blocking right out of the box.