Buying Glasses Online vs. In Store: Which is Cost Effective?


Online shopping is here to stay, and you will be hard-pressed to find goods or services that can’t be purchased on the web. However, you shouldn’t feel ashamed to admit that you might prefer to buy in-store.

To this day, you may find opticians in Essex area who sell glasses both online and in-store, so you’re free to choose the option that suits you most. Even in the face of the recent boost in digital sales, in-store purchases won’t be going away anytime soon, especially as they can get your sight tested on the spot and find a tailormade option that fits your specific optical needs.

With that said, we’ve been assessing all the different benefits and drawbacks of buying glasses online vs. in-store to ascertain which option was the most cost-effective.

The following comparison will essentially boil down to three major bullet points, to wit:

  • Convenience
  • Variety
  • Costs

Let’s unpack these points:

Table of Contents


When it comes to the most convenient option, there really is no silver bullet. If you are short on time and wish to have it done with, you will most likely be tempted to opt for an online store.

However, online shopping has its inherent risks. For one, you are only glancing at letters and images on a screen, and it gets worse if you need to buy new reading glasses, as you’ll be then glancing at blurry letters and images on a screen! All joking aside, it doesn’t stop there.

If you place an order and the merchandise that gets delivered is faulty or has issues, you’d still have to go through the hurdle of raising warranty claims, a situation that could have been avoided had you taken the time to try the product at the store. This could involve assuming shipping costs when delivering the product back to the vendor or taking the defective glasses back to the shop yourself, spending precious gas money in the process.

In the long run, buying a pair of glasses online can end up costing you more time (and money to boot).

On the other hand, in-store opticians can offer personalised attention and tend to your specific optical conditions far better than any online glasses dealer would, for they can make use of the proper tools to get your eyes tested and find the best lens formula for you.


In this regard, online shopping wins hands down. There are far better chances of finding the latest glasses trends through an online shopping platform than at a physical retailer. What’s more, with more variety in makers and models at arms’ reach, you’ll also have access to a wider price range to choose from.


Online shops, since they basically bypass the middleman in the supply chain, are capable of offering products at a much better price than traditional retail shops without any compromise in quality. This is, of course, relative, for it heavily depends on the vendor, but the odds of finding better prices for the same glasses online are far greater.


When all is said and done, buying glasses online can appear at first to be the most cost-effective option, but it’s not devoid of dangers. You ought to ensure that the vendor you’re buying from has a good rating and reputation, as well as a long-lasting presence in the market. You’d also need to have extensive knowledge about your prescription and the lens type that’s more fitting for you. In the end, the choice is ultimately yours.


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