Frequently Asked Questions

What is an Optical Buying Groups and how do they work?
An Optical buying group, is an organization joined by optometrists and opticians, who collectively receive, preferred pricing on optical products and services.  Buying groups have been in Canada since the early 1980s.

How long has The Optical Group been supporting  Canadian Optical Professionals?
The Optical Group began providing buying group support to a small but select group of Canadian Optical Professionals in January 1988. We have grown and evolved into one of the largest buying groups in Canada, with current locations nearing 600.

What value does The Optical Group provide my business?
The Optical Group, and its combined purchasing power, provides access to products, brands and pricing that you would not otherwise get as an independent business.  One consolidated statement organized every month insures you are accurately billed for each supplier and all credits due are applied.  The time savings alone allow you to focus on the business of selling Optical products and services.

How can The Optical Group save me time?
No longer will you have to:

• Wait for different mailings from multiple suppliers
• Review and translate each supplier’s format
• Check and track discounts
• Apply and adjust a master billings sheet
• Phone multiple suppliers; wait on hold with accounting or customer service
• Pay each supplier individually

Just one Bill, Organized and verified by your Optical Group Team

How do I order products and how am I billed?
When you apply and are an approved Optical Group member you are assigned a unique member number. Your account is set up with all approved Optical Group preferred suppliers.  The process is simple and easy, with minimal information and time required on your part.  As you order through these suppliers using your optical group number, you will receive your product and invoice directly. At the beginning of each month, we receive from your suppliers your due invoice amounts on one consolidated summary from each of the suppliers. Then from us you get an organized summary statement of all purchases, organized by vendor, complete with discount adjustments, credits and all applicable taxes and adjustments.

How do I find out about promotions and deals?
Every month suppliers compete for your attention.  We propose and review all promotional offers, organize promotions by category, negotiate with suppliers, and present to you a consistent and impactful selection of promotions to grow your business.  You have complete decision making power on which promotions you choose and how you customize them for your business.

What services does The Optical Group provide?

• Competitive Supplier Discounts
• Time Saving, Consolidated monthly  statements
• High Quality and High Profit, Exclusive Optical Group Private Label Products
• Knowledgeable support for your business
• Accredited seminars and training
• No monthly admin fees or associated accounting costs
• Our Commitment Guarantee

How is The Optical Group different from other Canadian Buying Groups?
Most groups in Canada have complicated contracts, discount and reimbursement structures. We focus our efforts on making business simple with services we have developed over the years based entirely on independent optical needs.  Our membership continues to grow consistently in all provinces, many thanks to our members and associations with their kind words and recommendations helping us to continue and grow our membership.

How will my invoices from suppliers change?
Some suppliers do deduct off invoice but most invoices no longer reflect any supplier discounts.  These discounts will be deducted by the group, and are shown on your consolidated monthly statement.

Can The Optical Group help with discounts on equipment and other services?
Since most vary on many factors, talk to us and we will add leverage and instant value to your negotiations when selecting a supplier and finalizing a purchase.

What is the process for applying for a member account?
When applying for membership  to The Optical Group you will complete an application that includes your credit information.  After a successful credit check, the group will inform our group suppliers that you are now a member of our buying group, and we will request that your future statements be sent to our group, rather than to you directly. Our group will amalgamate your statements at the beginning of each month, deducting your suppliers’ discounts, and send you a consolidated net bill for payment. Note: Some suppliers require a separate application in addition to ours.

What method and terms apply to my monthly bills?
We pay our preferred suppliers mid month.  Our discounts and privileges rely on our members paying in 15 days.  If a supplier has extended terms, you are billed accordingly.

Who do I call if I have a question with my statement or a supplier billing?
The Optical Group has an experienced and dedicated team who you can call to solve any supplier or statement question. We have excellent relationships with our preferred suppliers, and with few exceptions, we can answer questions the same day.

What if my current discounts are larger than your stated supplier discounts?
In some cases this may apply that is a conversation we would have with the supplier prior to joining our group.