VisionWatch has released its look at vision care services and eyewear purchasing trends in the U.S., conducted by The Vision Council. This Consumer Barometer found that in the 12 months through June 2010, sales in the vision care market fell by 3 percent to $31.7 billion.
Frames, which make up 25.7 percent of the total market's sales at retail, decreased by 3.1 percent. Lenses, accounting for 29.6 percent of the market, dropped by 2.4 percent. Contact lenses had a 1 percent drop in sales, and sunglasses were down by 6.8 percent.
Eye exams, on the other hand saw an increase of 1.2 percent, and their share of the total market rose from 14.9 percent the prior year to 15.6 percent the most recent year. By volume, for the six months ended June 30, eye exams rose by 1.1 percent to 47.4 million. Reading glasses also gained during the 12-month period, up by 2.9 percent. They made up 2 percent of the vision care market.
The study also asked consumers about their intent to make future purchases. For the six-month period from January-June 2010, it was lower than in the period from October 2009-March 2010.