NewYork, 20.01.2016

Daily Contact Lenses Surpass Weeklies in Dollar Sales, Edge Closer in Box Volume – GfK


Point-of-sale panel data shows daily SKUs are driving overall growth in the US Soft Contact Lens market

Daily contact lenses continue to steal share of wallet in the US from weekly lenses, according to the latest data from GfK’s POS Tracking team.

From June to November 2015, daily SKUs accounted for 31% of US Soft Contact Lens dollar sales – up from 16% in the same period four years earlier. Meanwhile, weekly lenses have dropped from 44% of sales to 28% in the same four-year timeframe. Monthly lenses have remained flat but maintain market dominance, posting 40% of sales in 2015 versus 39% in 2011.

Sales in the daily category are maintaining overall Soft Contact Lens growth at 3.7%; however, these gains are coming at the expense of reusable lenses in sphere, toric, and multifocal.  As these are much larger segments, overall growth is softer versus previous periods.

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Much of the daily growth is coming from the specialty segments – multifocal (up +140%), and toric (up +31%).  At the same time, reusable lenses are recording sales declines (spherical, down -2.6%; multifocal, down -7.2%) or flat growth (toric, up +0.1% change).     

Annual supplies continue to represent 30% of all Soft Contact Lens purchases, but the trend for daily SKUs is a weakening demand for annual supplies. New contact lens wearers who purchase a daily lens are 40% less likely to buy an annual supply than those who had been wearing contacts previously.

Daily soft lenses now account for 29% of US box volume – up from 13% in 2011. Meanwhile, weeklies have dropped from a 57% share to 33% in the same timeframe. Monthly soft lenses grew from 30% to 38% of unit volume.

“The Soft Contact Lens marketplace in the US is anything but static,” said Sonia Martins, Business Group Director (Optics) on GfK’s POS Tracking team. “Daily lenses have been disruptive, pushing familiar reusable options to the background and winning over consumers with a low-maintenance and high-cost vision solution.”

“Dailies continue to present tremendous opportunity for category growth and increased revenues, all the while promoting eye health,” Martins continued. “Reusable lenses are not dead – they are evolving through the latest innovations and a more palatable price point.  The year 2016 will continue to see even more dramatic shifts in the marketplace – so hold on tight.”

GfK’s Optics team in the US captures point-of-sale data from key retail outlets for its POS panel, and also gathers prescribing information from optometrists as part of its Fits panel. The combination offers a powerful look at short and long-term trends in the industry – essential planning information for manufacturers and sellers alike.

To learn more about joining one of GfK’s Optics panel or using GfK data to guide product decisions, contact James Pasel at 

About GfK
GfK is the trusted source of relevant market and consumer information that enables its clients to make smarter decisions. More than 13,000 market research experts combine their passion with GfK’s long-standing data science experience. This allows GfK to deliver vital global insights matched with local market intelligence from more than 100 countries. By using innovative technologies and data sciences, GfK turns big data into smart data, enabling its clients to improve their competitive edge and enrich consumers’ experiences and choices.

For more information, please visit or follow GfK on Twitter.


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