The #1 Unexpected Thing That Will Make or Break Your Funeral Home


I’m a firm believer in supporting local businesses.

And thanks to all of the new technology (and Internet) tools out there, it’s never been easier to attract new customers as easily as the “big guys” do.

But recently, I’ve realized that many small businesses aren’t making it very easy for themselves to earn new customers.

To understand what I mean, let me tell you a story.

A story about the invisible small business

The other day, I was helping a friend find some kitchen units for a home renovation project. There were three or four local suppliers, so instead of visiting each one in-person, we searched for them on the Internet, we turned our search to Google (which is where 97% of consumers do, by the way). Let’s just say it wasn’t the best experience. Here’s why:

– One supplier had a website that reflected the product range, but the stock list wasn’t up to date so we had no idea whether the items we wanted were available.
– Another had a static one-page website that hadn’t been updated since 1990s. (If you want to know why outdated web design is bad for your funeral home, check out our recent post on website design history.)
– And a third had no website at all. (gasp)

Needless to say, it was pretty frustrating, and we ended up having to do a lot more legwork than we’d expected. Ironically, the business with the best product range turned out to be the one that had no website at all – but there was no easy way for us to find that out.

There are two lessons we can learn from my experience:

1. If your business does not have a website, it might as well not exist.
2. If you have a terrible website that makes it hard to find the information people want, then you’re wasting your time – and theirs.

In both those cases, you are losing business – can you afford that? Not in this economy, you can’t! 

9 ways your website represents your business


I hear it almost everyday. “I don’t need a website, I’ve got a Facebook page”. Or, “no thanks, I’m not interested in a website, I’m already doing lots of Yellow Page advertising”. Every time someone tells me they don’t need a website, I want to scream! Gone are the days where not having a website is OK. If you don’t believe me, keep reading to find out 9 ways your website serves you in ways you might not even imagine:


1. Your website is your business card, but way more interactive.

If your website is any good, it has some of the same information as a business card, like your business name, a key contact, address, phone number and relevant contact information. It has links to your social media profiles too, so that people can connect with you. All that information is crucial for SEO, for local search and for the increasing number of mobile users. It’s not just any business card; it’s a business card with personality. See 18 Questions Your Funeral Home Must Answer for more on this.


2. Your website is your Yellow Pages ad, but more relevant.

The Yellow Pages used to be the best way to find information… in the 90’s. But now, here we are in the 2010’s, and most people can agree that the  the Yellow Pages are “on their way out”. The consumers of today look for business information online and don’t use the Yellow Pages much anymore. The great thing about using your own website for promotion is that you don’t have to worry about budgeting for a set amount of space. You can use as many pages as you need to introduce client families to your firm through your website.


3. Your website is your billboard, but not as static.

There’s no denying that billboards attract attention, but only from people who actually drive by. Your website puts key information about your funeral home at the fingertips of anyone who is looking. If you want to make a big splash about your funeral home, your services, your staff, your events or anything else that takes your fancy, do it on your website with blog posts, videos, podcasts, infographics and more. Your story, your way – am I preaching to the choir yet?


4. Your website represents your brand.

Your funeral home is an institution in your community. A website reinforces your funeral home’s branding and positioning by giving you an online presence to go with your offline one. Having your own website means you have a domain name that represents your brand (and email addresses) to go with it. And, it allows you to express the personality of your funeral home, inform and engage with potential client families and sell your services. So if you think about it,  you really can’t do business without it.


5. Your website is the front door to your home on the web.

That means you should set out the virtual welcome mat and make it inviting (while avoiding these common website mistakes that will lose you business, of course).  A website that welcomes new business with open arms puts the information they’re looking for right where they need it. Want to see a truly welcoming website in action? Then be sure to check out O’Connor Mortuary’s site.



6. Your website showcases sets you apart from your competition.

Sure, you might already know what makes you different from every other funeral home. That’s your unique selling proposition (USP). But does your community? If not, it’s time you let them know why they should pick you instead of your competitors. Your website is the perfect place to showcase that. In order to do this successfully, you must show off your funeral home’s unique selling propositions for your website visitors so that “you stand out when people are considering which funeral home to choose”.

Your website should say to client families: “this is how we can help and why we are valuable”. It’s a marketing opportunity you can’t afford to miss.

Which brings us to our next point…


7. Your website is the heart of your marketing efforts.

The bottom line is, every funeral home needs a website. Every advertisement, everything you share on social media, all your marketing, should lead people back to your site. People expect it and it’s the natural place to go to learn more about what you offer. So if you’re going to spend the money to market your funeral home, you should spend the money to attract those leads with a website as well.


8. Your website is your communication hub.

For any business today, the website has replaced the telephone as the primary means of staying in contact with your customers. It’s how you attract new people and it’s where you post news and updates. It’s where people will look for the answers to the questions they might have called you to find out, like the price of your funeral services. You need to make sure that information is there or they will just click on to another site.


9. Your website is a magazine.

Content Marketing Today calls the web a “virtual global magazine rack”. Your website gives you a spot on that rack. But just as you scan the magazines on the shelf before picking the one you will buy, potential client families are doing the same as they search the web. Your website has to tempt them with an attractive design, useful information and relevant resources that keep them coming back so you’re top of mind when families need funeral services.


10. Your website isn’t just for you, it’s for client families.

The last, and probably most important point here is that your website is the most important resource you can offer families. It offers families a way to find what they need without having to leave the comfort of their own home (which is a big deal these days, apparently). Here’s what your website is for them:

– It’s your virtual guestbook that connects friends and family from all over the world.
– It’s their
– It’s their flower shop, allowing them to send their condolences even when they can’t make it to the service.
– It’s your GPL and your product catalog.
– It’s your secretary and all of their answers to their FAQs.

So as you can see, your website is… everything your client families need. I know, it’s hard to get used to not having that face-to-face connection with families, but trust me when I say that they’re still looking for you, but online. Are you there for them to find you? Do you offer what they’re looking for on your website? If not, it’s time to make that happen.


More website resources

If you haven’t already realized, having a website isn’t optional. In fact, it can make or break your funeral home. It needs a great design, thought-out SEO, social connectivity, mobile optimized, and so much more. If you need help on making your website great, here are some resources that might help (courtesty of the f1 team):

– 11 Signs You’re Losing Business Because of Your Funeral Home Website
– What Do 76% of Families Want From Your Funeral Home Website?
– 18 Questions Your Funeral Home Website Must Answer
– 6 Lessons About Your Funeral Home Website From The World’s Most Influential Leaders
– 5 Reasons Why Mobile Is The Future For Your Funeral Home


What are you waiting for?

Don’t waste another minute turning away business with a website not built for client families (or even worse, no website at all). Learn more about getting your funeral home online with the all-in-one website platform, f1Connect. Click here or give us a call at 800-798-2575, ext. 5 to get a free demo with our website specialists today!


Joe Joachim


More Posts - Website

Follow Me:

Leave a Reply

Note: You can use basic XHTML in your comments.

  1. Bert Poston

    Funeral directors, by In large, are closed minded and slow to change. As a 30 year FS veteran, I’ve seen many changes. The internet has been the best thing to happen to FS. In 1994, I launched the first website in SC along with a television ad campaign. At the time, neither had been done by any sc funeral homes. To my surprise, I was criticized and reprimanded by the state association members. This took place within the first month online. I was a believer. A funeral home that is not online is on its way out of business,!

  2. Funeral Blog. The official blog for the funeral & cemetery professions. » Blog Archive 7 Easy Ways To Increase Traffic To Your Funeral Home Website

    […] today’s world, having a website is make or break for your funeral home. It helps you educate families on your offerings, offers endless branding and […]