Ezyglasses has been a few years in the making, and had a few revolutions during this time.
We started out as a 'poor second cousin' to our big brother contact lenses website www.ezyvision.co.nz and as most poor relatives find out, the rich cuzzies get all the attention and have all the fun!
So we knew we needed to define our own reason for existence. But it wasn't all beer and skittles. We had on-going supplier and product quality issues. Most of the products we thought we had in stock weren't, and the supposedly out-of-stock products were sitting on our shelves in worrying quantities... cut a long story short, we were going nowhere.
When Covid reared its ugly head in early 2020 this was the final nail in the coffin due to even more supply issues caused by our reliance on international suppliers airfreighting products to us, so we finally decided enough was enough and for six months we closed the website to business while we figured out what to do.
Back at the drawing board and with plenty of spare time (thanks Covid...) we came up with a few basic values that we decided were going to define Ezyglasses.
Here they are...
Next day delivery
We know that Kiwis love getting stuff the next day. We have fantastic local courier services and we've come to expect that next day delivery for online orders is not unreasonable.
So we decided that this would be one of our key values. It meant that we had to massively increase the stocks we hold at our warehouse in NZ, and resulted in us discontinuing some products we previously offered eg progressive lenses which we could never hope to stock all the possible parameter combinations.
But the result of this value change is that we are now the only online glasses retailer that can stand up and say that every single product we offer for sale on our website will dispatch the same day you order it. (provided it's ordered before 3pm which is our cutoff to allow processing and pickup)
And of course being located here in NZ and using overnight couriers we achieve a 93% success rate of getting glasses on to the faces of our customers the next day after they order them! And the remaining 7%? Of these, 99% are delivered within two days and the reason why the majority of these are an extra day are either after 3pm orders or delivery related issues.
Real-world value glasses
It's no secret that glasses are traditionally heavily marked up in price. We're not here to make any judgement on how the traditional glasses market works, but our second value was born from a desire to offer what we call 'real-world value' with our glasses.
Quite simply this means we look at the price we pay for a pair of glasses that we buy from a manufacturer (this ranges from NZD $4.00 to $18.00), then we take the cost of the lenses (NZD $2.00 to $8.00), then we include the cost of everything it takes to process an order including fitting the lenses into the frames, courier etc and finally we add our profit margin to ensure we stay in business! This is not revolutionary, it's just simple mathematics that most businesses use to determine the price they will offer their products for. (hence why we call it 'real-world value')
And the result? Glasses delivered freight-free to our customers that range in price from $19.95 to $49.95.
Are our glasses inferior? Not in any way. Our $19.95 glasses are at the very budget end of the quality range, but they are still perfectly good frames & lenses that will give most wearers a very satisfactory outcome. And anything $29.95 and up are as good quality as you will buy anywhere.
The only difference is that we have a very specific set of values that we operate by, and this particular one influences the prices we set.
No hassles for you, no hassles for us
During the early dark days at Ezyglasses when we tried to offer all things to everyone, it was normal for a high percentage of customers to have issues. Whether it was the three week (& often longer) wait, or a complex prescription that wasn't right, or a lens tint that was too dark (or light)... you name it we got it wrong! And often this resulted in another three week wait... Hassles for our customers, hassles for us. The worst of both worlds.
Obviously this had to be addressed and this became the basis for our third value.
We went through every aspect of our business and figured out where the hassles were coming from. The most obvious one was our reliance on non-NZ suppliers so this reinforced the requirement to hold everything we sell in stock and process all orders in-house.
But our dizzying range of lenses on offer were another huge hassle factory all on it's own. We were trying to offer every conceivable lens option in the hopes we'd be keeping everyone happy - and we were achieving the exact opposite! So an analysis of our lenses range was necessary. This resulted in the discontinuation of all lenses options and the creation of just two easy options in single vision only. Out went progressives, bifocals, tints, photochromic, polycarbonate and prism correction. Our final decision to offer just two lens options in single vision only was due to the fact that 80% of our sales were single vision anyway, and of these, most people wanted either the cheapest possible lenses or 'something a bit better' eg thinner, scratch resistant, UV, anti-reflective... So that's what we did!
Glasses aren't the easiest thing to order online. Now obviously we should be the last people to be saying this but unfortunately it's true. Having to decipher a prescription isn't always easy. The fact that you're buying something that you'll wear on a very prominent part of your body and for long periods of time means you're quite understandably going to be somewhat fussy about how they look and feel. If they're uncomfortable or you look awful in them, it's a failed mission. And on top of all this, glasses have a very important functional role to fulfill - helping you see clearly - so getting this right is absolutely imperative. And every time just one of these happens to a customer, it happens to us too because we have to get involved again to make it right. Hassle for you equals a hassle for us.
Our answer to this is to adopt the mindset that nothing is too much hassle anymore. We can't eliminate the occurrence of a customer buying glasses that feel uncomfortable when they actually start wearing them. We can't even eliminate the occurrence of a customer changing their mind and hating a particular pair of glasses that just 24 hours earlier they fell in love with. But what we can do is make these sorts of things a 'no hassle' situation anymore. How do we do this? By making it easy to fix anything that is a hassle. To start with we're extremely easy to contact. You can call our freephone or chat online with us and you'll find we are the friendliest, fix-any-problem-est team you will ever find. Got a problem? We'll sort it out. We'll arrange the return for you. We'll refund you the entire payment within 24 hours. We'll swap to a different frame and won't charge an extra cent for doing so. We'll do Saturday delivery if you're desperate. We'll contact the courier and chase up your late delivery. All of a sudden hassles disappear. For you, for us.
Think our values align with yours? If you're needing glasses we'd be thrilled to have you join our growing team of very happy glasses wearers!
Thanks for reading!
Steve & the team at Ezyglasses