How much does an optometry practice make? It’s a question you may wonder while opening or managing your own optometry practice. According to data from Indeed, the average optometrist’s income in the USA is $121,050. A study of optometry practice finances also revealed the average office brings in more than $2 million per year in revenue from more than 4,100 patients. Clearly, you’ve picked a great profession. Running your own optometry practice can be highly lucrative. You also fill the huge demand for optometrists: over 200 million Americans use a vision-correction device, all of whom need to see an optometrist regularly. But most importantly, your work in diagnosing, treating, and managing visual injuries and diseases can help improve the lives of countless people.But when you’re busy helping improve others’ health, it can become difficult to pay attention to your practice’s finances. After all, why concern yourself with credit card processing fees when you have 10 patients to see today? While it may seem like an unnecessary effort, it’s truly worth it to take the time to implement a cheaper (or free) credit card processing system. Doing so could bring your business tens of thousands of dollars more per year.Interested now?Here’s some even better news: setting up fee-free credit card processing actually doesn’t take that long, and the benefits are enormous. Let’s dig a little deeper into how you can get free credit card processing at your optometry practice—and how doing so can start saving your business thousands.
We can answer the first question with an example. Let’s say your optometry practice generates $2 million in revenue each year (about the industry average). A majority of your revenue probably comes from private insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid payments. But a sizable portion, perhaps 25%, could come from out-of-pocket expenses. Among that $500,000, you could expect 60% of that revenue to come from credit card transactions. That leaves $300,000 in revenue subject to credit card processing fees. If you look at the table below detailing average transaction fees, you’ll see that you could easily pay more than 3% per transaction.
Add in the fees assessed by the payment processor, and you could end up paying 4% on average. If that’s the case, your optometry practice will hand over $12,000 per year in credit card transaction fees. That’s way too much! So, let’s go back to the question: How much does an optometry practice make with traditional credit card processing? If your practice brings in $2 million in revenue at a 10% net margin, you’ll make $200,000 per year. But you’ll also have forfeited $12,000 in fees. Why would you just give that money away? Now, let’s answer the second question: How much does an optometry practice make with free credit card processing?If your practice had exactly the same revenue and margins with no credit card transaction fees, you would make $212,000 per year—$12,000 more! That’s a salary increase of 6%. And all you had to do was eliminate credit card processing fees. Just think of what you could do with that extra money. You could:
Upgrade your practice’s equipment
Save more for retirement
Pay off your mortgage faster
Put away money for your children’s college
Take a nicer vacation
Now, you may be asking yourself: How do I implement free credit card processing at my optometry practice? Unfortunately, you can’t just tell Visa or American Express that you’re no longer going to pay them. It doesn’t work like that. However, there is a strategy for getting fee-free credit card processing that’s almost as easy (and perfectly legal). Let’s take a look at the steps for getting started.
Step 1: Get the best possible payment processor for your optometry practice
The payment processing industry remains plagued with merchant service providers who don’t have your best interests in mind. They aren’t transparent with pricing and charge unnecessary fees. Not only is that frustrating, it also hurts your business’ financial sustainability.So, although you’re busy, it pays (literally!) to pay attention to your choice of merchant service provider (MSP). While some aren’t so great, there are plenty of good MSPs out there to choose from. When looking for an MSP that provides services to medical businesses like your optometry practice, you can gain some clarity on their pricing by examining the following fees:
Interchange fee: This fee goes to the card-issuing bank, such as Bank of America.
Network fee: This fee goes to the payment network, such as MasterCard.
Assessment fee: This fee goes to the card-issuing brand, such as Delta Airlines.
MSP markup: This fee goes to the payment processor and is typically assessed through hardware and software fees, as well as subscription charges. Avoid MSPs who assess random charges, such as online reporting fees and customer service charges.
As you shop for MSPs, pay careful attention to the above fees. Get a good estimate on how much your optometry practice will pay in fees per transaction and overall each month. It’s important that you don’t automatically choose the cheapest payment processor. You’ll also want to make sure that the processing company has reliable customer service and that their system offers the functionality you need, including:
Also keep in mind that while you can’t negotiate fees with banks, Visa, or card brands, you can negotiate the MSRP markup. We’ve seen medical practices get 5–10% off the MSP markup, so don’t miss out on the chance to save money. Once you’ve seen the best offers from a few quality MSPs, go with the company that offers the best value to your business. This will put your optometry practice in the best position to get free credit card processing. After that, you can move on to step 2!
Step 2: Implement a credit surcharge program at your optometry practice
Want to end credit card processing fees once and for all? Then you’ll need to implement a credit surcharge program at your optometry practice. As its name suggests, a credit surcharge program involves having the customer cover the credit card processing fee. It’s 100% legal and compliant (thanks to the Dodd-Frank Act) and gives businesses like your optometry practice the chance to eliminate the impact of transaction fees on your bottom line. A credit surcharge program would give your patients the opportunity to save money by paying for out-of-pocket costs in cash. They’d still have the convenience of paying with a credit card, but would pay a bit more to cover that processing fee. Now, you may be wondering: How exactly does this work? At NadaPayments, our credit surcharge program does the following for optometry practices:
Adds 3.5% to the bill if the patient pays with a credit card: This adjustment is made automatically.
Provides signage at your door and point of sale: This way, patients know they can save money if they pay with cash.
Doesn’t charge a fee for debit card transactions: Credit surcharge programs aren’t allowed to assess a surcharge for debit card payments. Our program has your optometry practice pay 1% plus $0.25 per transaction on debit card payments.
Some businesses wonder if implementing a credit surcharge program will upset their customers. Luckily, this isn’t the case. In fact, many patients may prefer your credit surcharge program instead of traditional pricing structures. After all, they’ll have the option to save money and will appreciate your practice’s transparency when it comes to payment. Moreover, by using a credit surcharge program, your optometry practice won’t take a hit from credit card processing fees. The daily savings you get from a credit surcharge program will more than speak for themselves. And over the months and years, those savings will really add up. A credit surcharge program will not only help you build a financially sustainable optometry practice, but you’ll also reap the rewards personally. Bringing in an additional 6% or more of your annual income will open up a lot more possibilities for your business.
Get credit card processing at your optometry practice today
You have the opportunity to increase your profits by tens of thousands of dollars each year. All you need to do is find a better MSP and utilize a surcharge program. At NadaPayments, we can help you start eliminating credit card processing fees today. We can take your credit card processing bill to nada. On top of that, we don’t charge any setup fees. Our surcharge solution easily integrates with your existing payment system and works on the go, in-store, and online. And it only takes a day to get set up! Ready to get started?Call us at +1 (929) 293-1800 or click the link below. We’re ready to help you take home 100% of your optometry practice’s revenue.