Planning a Funeral: Before and After Web 2.0

You all know the impact Web 2.0 has had on the funeral profession, but do you really understand the impact it has had on those shopping for services offered by your funeral home? Compare the two scenarios below to gain a clear understanding of how Web 2.0 has changed the ways families select a funeral home and plan a service.

Shopping for a Funeral Home Pre-Web 2.0

Grandpa Earl passed away peacefully in his sleep on Saturday night. His daughter, Susie, spent all day Sunday calling local funeral homes to arrange her father’s service. She first placed a call to the funeral home that buried her Uncle Joe.

After leaving a message on the funeral home’s voicemail system, Susie proceeded to call other local funeral homes she found listed in the Yellow Pages. Of the six funeral homes Susie called, half of them sent her directly to their voicemail, and the other half made her schedule an appointment for Tuesday.

With the realization of her father’s death starting to settle in, Susie decided to sit down and write Grandpa Earl’s obituary to submit to the local newspaper. However, without the funeral service information, Susie was at a standstill. She knew there was a lot that needed to be done, but never having planned a funeral before, she didn’t know where to begin. Susie felt frustrated, helpless and alone.

Shopping for a Funeral Home Post-Web 2.0

Grandpa Stanley passed away peacefully in his sleep on Saturday night. His daughter, Jane, got online first thing Sunday morning and started researching local funeral homes and comparing the services they offered. Within seconds, Jane got the name, address, phone number and website of six firms within a 20-mile radius.

After visiting their websites, Jane narrowed down the list of funeral homes by removing the firms whose websites spoke more about the funeral home’s history and staff, rather than focusing on how they could help during their time of need. One firm remained.

The instant Jane arrived on their homepage, she found a list of services offered, as well as a step-by-step guide of what needed to be done in preparation for her father’s service. The website perfectly outlined Jane’s options and gave her unique service ideas so she knew exactly what she wanted when she walked in the door.

Following the meeting with the funeral home, Jane’s father’s memorial website was online for friends and family to share stories, photos and virtual gifts. The dynamic website was not only a place for obituary and service information, it was a place where Grandpa Stanley’s life was celebrated, remembered and shared.

Why Web 2.0 Matters

The moral of the story is technology has changed the way your client families select a funeral home and plan a service. Their expectations are different. If your website leaves them frustrated and feeling alone, they’ll select another firm whose website provides education, comfort and support. Essentially, if you’re still operating your firm the same way you were pre-Web 2.0, you might want to re-think your way of doing things—if you want to attract the families of today.

Share Your Stories

If you’ve had similar experiences either pre- or post-Web 2.0, we’d love to hear your stories. Please share your comments below!

Kelly Murad


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  1. Jackie

    I can really relate with this post. The internet has really changed my business, that’s for sure. I’ve found that many families now ulitmately visit my funeral home because they found my website.

  2. 6 Ways to Make the Right First Impression With Your Website | Funeral Blog. The official blog for the funeral & cemetery professions.

    […] my post Planning a Funeral: Before and After Web 2.0 I briefly touched on how families of today use funeral websites as resources when selecting funeral […]