Independent opticians once again rated best in Which? survey

1 September 2016

Praills Opticians, Fareham
An eye examination at Praills Opticians, Fareham - a SPECS network independent optician

The latest Which? survey once again shows that independent opticians are the best places to have your eyes tested and to buy glasses.

Which? has repeated its survey of 8,465 members (last carried out in 2014) to reveal 2016's best and worst places to have your eyes tested and buy glasses. Independent opticians once again topped the table with an overall customer rating of 87%, ahead of all the national big-brand names and supermarkets.

Those members who were customers of independent opticians told Which? that they ...

"... highly value the professional staff, thorough eye-testing, quality products and great aftercare.”

Although independent opticians weren’t rated as highly as some of the big chains for special offers (rating only “average” on that measure), Which? warns consumers to be careful about such offers as they can be confusing and because buying the very cheapest glasses offers significantly worse value than choosing higher-quality frames. 

Highlights from the survey include:

  • Local independent opticians came top overall with a customer score of 87%.
  • Independent opticians rated the best place to have an eye test - scoring 89%.
  • Independent opticians rated the best place to buy glasses - scoring 82%.
  • Independent opticians were the only stores to achieve 5-star ratings for all of these factors: thorough eye tests, product quality, after-sales, customer service, and store environment

Our conclusion ...

The almost 9 out of 10 overall rating for independent opticians shows that people recognise the importance of getting the right glasses, advice, and aftercare. Savvy customers understand that getting the best care and value involves more than just grabbing a superficially attractive 2-for-1 deal.


At SPECS network we very much agree with the survey's conclusions. We know that your eyesight is precious and deserves the best possible care. But everyone has different tastes, budgets, and needs, so it's important to choose the right optician for you.  We recommend looking beyond simple headline offers and promotions and choosing the optician that will provide you with the best experience overall. 

Take a look at our film below, in which people explain why they are pleased to have chosen their local independent opticians.

To find your nearest independent SPECS network opticians, just enter your postcode in our 'find an optician' locator tool (top right of this page).