A Guide to Online Funeral Planning for Funeral Professionals

As the world experiences tremendous changes in technology and consumer buying habits, funeral professionals need solutions that help them adapt to and anticipate these opportunities. One of the major developments in funeral service is a shift to online and digital services – including online funeral planning tools.

In this article, we’ll share answers to common questions about what’s now possible with online funeral planning, what that means for your funeral home business and client families and much more, including:

What is online funeral planning?

There are many online tools to help consumers learn about, consider and record their wishes for their funeral services and memorialization options. These vary greatly in functionality and include apps, online forms and questionnaires with prompts to get people thinking about how they want to be remembered and the types of experiences they’d like to plan for their loved ones.

Increasingly, funeral service professionals and the clients they serve are looking for more robust solutions that help users through the process from start to finish in a way that’s intuitive even for those without prior funeral planning experience. This demand led to the development of eFuneral, a groundbreaking online planning platform that integrates with funeral homes’ websites.

“eFuneral is a guided experience that helps build consumer confidence and helps provide context around the funeral planning process, whether it’s for themselves or a loved one,” explained eFuneral’s Director of Marketing Nick Grant. “It allows clients to shop, select and ultimately purchase an arrangement online.”

How does online funeral planning work?

eFuneral's digital storefront integrates with your existing website, serving as an extension of your brand. The goal is to create a seamless experience that offers families the high level of satisfaction you strive for in every other aspect of your services. It’s a way to convert website visitors into loyal clients who will appreciate that you offered them the option to plan in a way they prefer.

“No matter what a consumer is shopping for, their expectations typically revolve around having your information readily available and accessible and being able to provide a service for them when and where they need you the most,” Grant said.

What are the benefits of online funeral planning?

Online funeral planning is beneficial for everyone involved in the process, from the client families to your staff. It builds opportunities for new audiences to connect with you, learn about your services and start putting plans in place.   

Meet client families’ needs.

The number of families who are embracing online shopping is increasing, as is their familiarity with digital platforms. As these consumers become more comfortable making purchases online, your firm has an opportunity to better serve them with an experience that allows them to make their own decisions on their own time. In 2021 alone, eFuneral helped 47,000 families better understand what they needed to do when it came to making arrangements for a loved one or for themselves.

Differentiate your funeral home.

More and more funeral homes are offering resources on their websites – but experience matters greatly to the people who visit those websites. Consumers are used to online experiences that make their lives easier and more efficient, and many firms aren’t yet equipped to meet that need. That’s why the eFuneral team has invested in creating an intuitive, guided journey that makes it easy for clients to make their own selections and develop their funeral plans from start to finish, which is beneficial for them and for your funeral home.

Free up your staff’s time.

One of the key benefits of eFuneral is that it isn’t just an online storefront – it’s also a service that can help offload administrative work that your staff would typically have to cover. With the shift in those responsibilities, your team members can focus on what they do best: working with families who need their expertise.

“eFuneral has developed new functionality that allows us to be more of a service provider for funeral homes, so we can help them not just with their online arrangements but also provide them some efficiencies for their staff,” noted eFuneral President Luke Frieberg. “We continue to invest in how we can make funeral directors’ lives better because we know they’re under a lot of pressure with the amount of Baby Boomers who they will need to serve, combined with the ongoing need to recruit and retain high-performing staff.”

Earn more clients.

Implementing an online funeral planning solution offers access to consumers who you are less likely to reach through traditional marketing. By providing a great experience for them through eFuneral, you have opportunities to build connections with them over time – just as you would with families who visit your funeral home to prearrange in person.

Because every funeral home is different, the eFuneral team will work with you to ensure your digital storefront meets the needs of your firm and the families you serve. They will also offer several flexible service options to fit every funeral home's situation, including an eFuneral Basic tier that allows funeral homes to get started with the service at no cost.

The best way to discover how eFuneral can benefit your funeral home and your clients is to see how it works for yourself. Visit the eFuneral Partner website to get started today.

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