4 Ways an Online Preplanning Tool Makes Your Job Easier
By Austin Hennesay, Digital Sales Manager
As a funeral director, you’re likely one of the busiest people you know. Your time is stretched thin because you have to manage cases, plan funerals, work with vendors, and help preneed families.
Many funeral directors know they can’t do it all, so they use technology to help make their lives easier. This can look like case management software, a website provider, marketing solutions, or even an online preplanning tool.
Because so much of your time is dedicated to serving at-need families, it’s natural for you to devote less time to preneed families. But with an online preplanning tool, you can ensure their needs are met, too.
What’s an online preplanning tool?
Simply put, an online preplanning tool is a way for preneed families to prearrange online through your funeral home, from the comfort and convenience of home. That means they can:
Select merchandise and other add-ons
Choose service details that align with how they want to be memorialized
And more importantly, gain peace of mind for the future
Watch this 35-second clip for more details.
Though there are several online preplanning tools out there, not all were created equal. Some focus solely on disposition preferences and don’t educate families on the value of a funeral. Others provide a way to preplan but offer no way for families to fund their plans, even if they have the money and are prepared and comfortable with doing so.
You deserve a tool that:
1. Doesn’t solely promote direct cremations
2. Educates families on the value of a funeral
3. Provides a good, better, and best package recommendation to make for an easier decision-making process
4. Allows the option for funding online
5. And guides families through the entire process
Arrangement Guide does just that.
And it even makes your job easier.
1. Reach an untapped part of your market
Reaching families online requires a great digital marketing plan, especially if you want to reach preplanners. But it goes beyond sharing helpful preplanning resources on your website and social media. If you don’t give families a way to start the process online, you miss out on capturing them as leads.
With an online preplanning tool, families that never would have stepped foot in your funeral home unless they had an imminent need can start interacting with your business online. And you will have gained a new preneed lead to follow up with or a fully funded contract from another family served.
2. Provide resources to help educate the family
Online planners are already researching their options for their final plans. Millions read credible articles on www.FuneralBasics.org. Others use Google to answer their questions.
The fact is, you need to get ahead of their research and provide families with reliable information that is favorable for your funeral home, too. Your online preplanning tool can do just that.
Education is key with online preplanners. So, educate them! With an online preplanning tool with a resources section, you can explain the differences in disposition options, why one should have a viewing with a cremation, and so much more.
3. Guide them through the preplanning process without needing to be there
About 30% of funeral planners want to start the preplanning process online. They’re part of a growing group of future planners that either want to apply a do-it-yourself mentality to everything in life or love researching and learning things on their own. Learn more about these funeral consumers here.
Online preplanning is no exception.
For example, with our solution (Arrangement Guide), families find your tool online and answer a few basic questions to get started. They can even read the reasons behind the questions for more information (see point #2 about educating families).
From there, they can select merchandise based on your inventory and packages (which we can customize), and you can meet with them in person if they have more questions.
4. Get leads and fully funded contracts online
Possibly the biggest benefit of all is the opportunity to grow your preneed block of business online.
As mentioned before, you’re reaching an untapped market, educating preplanners about their options, and giving them the chance to make arrangements in advance. And our online preplanning tool even has a funding option.
That means families who truly want to do everything online can do so with your funeral home. It couldn’t be easier.
Plus, the people who don’t finish their plans become leads for your preneed salesperson to follow up with.
Arrangement Guide is simple online preplanning
Not only do families appreciate the easy-to-use tool, but our customers appreciate the convenience, too!
Some of our customers use Arrangement Guide as their sole driver for their preneed program. And since launching 2.5 years ago, we’ve generated over 5,000 leads for our hundreds of clients.
Other customers have created brand-new cremation-focused sister companies to appeal to the online cremation shopper.
The options for promoting the tool are numerous. It all depends on your market.
Ready to make your job as a funeral director easier with Arrangement Guide? Request a demo today!
This article is an excerpt from our eBook, “Serving Today’s Families Online.” Read the whole resource here.
Note: Arrangement Guide is available in participating states.