Are you looking to start your own independent optical practice? First of all, congratulations! Breaking out of your comfort zone and starting your own eye care practice can be exciting but highly overwhelming. One way to ensure success and put your mind at ease is by doing any prep work necessary to ensure a smooth entry into the marketplace. Keep reading to learn more about a few essential steps to take before opening your doors.
Crucial Steps to Take
Develop your business plan
- No matter what sort of business is being established, having a plan in place should be a non-negotiable part of that process. Why do you want to start your practice? Do you have the dedication and resources necessary to open a new business? After you answer these questions, move forward with your business plan.
- Your business plan should include information about business development deadlines, financial planning, and budgeting. Whether or not you’re familiar with the ins and outs of running a business, you should still consider speaking with a consultant or lawyer to ensure your plan is good to go.
- Since you’ll essentially be starting from scratch, your first-year business expenses will probably be extremely high. Make sure that you have a well-developed budget prior to purchasing anything for your optical practice. Before buying any equipment or product, focus on hiring your employees, choosing optometry management software, and leasing an affordable office space.
- Even with your budget drawn up, be prepared for other hidden expenses that may pop up during the process.
Learn about owning a practice
- Seek help from people who have expertise in running a business and optical practice management. Even if you have experience in the optometry industry, you still need a solid foundation of knowledge to build your business. Asking for help isn’t embarrassing; it’s good business practice. By getting the help you need early on, you’re less likely to have a lot of mistakes and errors to clear up after your business has launched.
Gather support for your endeavor
- Emotional and financial support are crucial elements in opening your independent practice. Starting a new business isn’t easy, so it’s helpful to have a support system to lean on when the road gets a bit bumpy. Support can come in the form of family, friends, colleagues, and investors.
Get involved early
- When it comes to drawing in customers, it’s never too early to get started! Try to get the word out about your new practice and build a following so that you already have customers by the time your doors open. Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are great ways to generate a following and get your name out in the space.
- Going out and being an active part of the community is another excellent way to gain traction. Attending local events or sponsoring local organizations are a few ways to build a community reputation.
Starting your own independent optical practice is no easy feat. However, you can make it simpler for yourself if you take the proper steps and put in the work early on in the process. By following the steps outlined above, you’ll be well on your way to opening a successful business.
One of the most important parts of owning an optometry practice is making sure that you’re stocked with quality products for your patients. A&A Optical has some of the best online selection of quality eyewear for eye care retailers in the country. We serve over 10,000 optometrists nationwide and have sold over 5 million frames. With collections from designers like Aéropostale, RACHEL Rachel Roy, and XXL, you’ll find frames for every patient you serve.