EyeBuyDirect is a direct to consumer eyewear brand headquartered in Austin, Texas, specializing in extremely low-priced eyeglasses and sunglasses. Founder Roy Hessel founded the company on the belief that "quality eyewear should be accessible, and more importantly affordable, to everyone. The ability to see shouldn’t be held at a premium when it’s such an integral part of our daily lives."
Products and Pricing
EyeBuyDirect is a perfect example of a low cost leader. Premium features on lenses are available, but carry additional costs. Shipping isn't free until you hit a $99 breakpoint. And yet, upon comparing even their premium products' prices and the cost of shipping against their competition, EyeBuyDirect still wins by a wide margin.
In our evaluation of this direct to consumer brand's pricing, we compared prices and features with a popular direct to consumer eyewear brand, beginning with EyeBuyDirect's very inexpensive Bandon frames (which were only $6 on the website on the day of our review). As far as lens coatings, there's an innovative "digital filter" coating that filters the harmful blue light from your computers and devices, for an extra $19.
You can also turn any pair of glasses into sunglasses for only $4.95, add polarization for $29, or add self-tinting/darkening to the lenses for $35.95. From there, we needed to choose from lenses listed as basic ($5.95), popular/mid-tier ($18.95), or advanced ($30.90). The only differences were that the basic is a bit thinner and doesn't have UV protection. All lenses have anti-scratch and anti-reflective coatings.
EyeBuyDirect is truly the low cost leader in the eyewear category.
Without any extras, this frame and lens could be bought for a staggeringly low price of $12.95! Even if you add the UV protection to bring it up to speed with the features of frames and lenses from competitors, the EyeBuyDirect cost is only $24.95 + $5.95 shipping. We found comparable glasses priced at $95 (over three times more expensive!).
To make the deal even sweeter, EyeBuyDirect was running a buy-one-get-one (BOGO) sale at the time of their review, which makes their prices go from incredibly affordable to insanely
Exceptional Shopping, Service
From a user experience and shopping standpoint, EyeBuyDirect checks all the boxes. Their website is smooth and clean, with a huge selection of styles and many different ways to filter the search results quickly.
The most impressive feature of the shopping experience is a virtual tool called EyeTry, which enables you to upload a photo of yourself and see exactly how you'd look wearing any of their frames! In creating this tool, this direct to consumer eyewear innovator has eliminated a key part of shopping for eyewear (the need to visit a store, or even try them on at home), and in having no middleman on the retail side, they're able to deliver more value to customers in the form of rock-bottom pricing.
From the perspective of customer service, support, and returns, EyeBuyDirect looks solid. They offer telephone support from 9am to 10pm, online chat, and the brand "typically replies instantly" on Facebook.
Generous Returns and Impact
For product returns, EyeBuyDirect offers a "14-Day Fit & Style guarantee," which allows for an exchange or refund for any reason. Additionally, they offer a 365-day guarantee on any product found to have defects in material or workmanship.
Lastly, the brand has gifted over 250,000 pairs of eyeglasses to their partner charities, Feed the Children and The Lions Club. While impact and donations are not part of our editorial evaluations of direct to consumer brands, it is nonetheless impressive that a brand like EyeBuyDirect—a clear low cost leader in its category—can find the extra resources to make such a large charitable contribution.
With incredibly low pricing, quality eyewear, and exceptional service, it's easy to see why EyeBuyDirect is a NoMiddleman favorite. They'll be tough to beat as a low cost leader in the direct to consumer eyeglasses