By Jennifer Goldade

It was important to have a funeral home website before, but now things have changed, and it is more important than ever. As funerals continue to go virtual, a website allows your funeral home to take the funeral planning process online.

However, just having a website is not enough anymore. To have a good funeral home website, its design, content, and tools must work together.

There are many features that make up a good funeral home website, but these are some of the most important ones.

Responsive Design
Per WebFX, 94% of first impressions relate to a website’s design. Things like difficult navigation and an unappealing layout can contribute to a poor first impression. Fortunately, there is an easy way to prevent these things: responsive design.

For those who do not know, a responsive design simply responds to the device type users view a website from. From the largest computer monitor to the smallest smartphone screen, everyone can easily navigate it, no matter what their device is. Instead of pinching and dragging the screen to navigate it, a responsive website looks great on every device.

A good funeral home website shows families what makes your firm the right choice for their loved one’s funeral. To customize it, include things like employee bios and photos, your funeral home’s history, and anything else that humanizes your firm. This way, families get to know the people behind your funeral home, not just the services you offer.
Creating a logo and establishing a color scheme are just a few more ways to customize your funeral home’s website. By being consistent, your funeral home can establish a look and feel for your brand.

Preplanning Tools
Families need convenience, so offering preplanning tools directly on your website gives them this. A must-have is a preplanning form for starting the funeral planning process from the comfort of their home. By being in a familiar environment, they may feel less pressure and be more open to exploring all the possibilities.

Additionally, a good funeral home website should be a resource for families. From preplanning guides and checklists to your general price list (GPL), these resources help families make educated decisions. By including your GPL, you can show that you have nothing to hide, which helps you build trusting relationships with families before they even step foot in your facility.

Funeral Payment Options
According to Podium’s The State of Local Business Report, even post-pandemic, eight out of ten consumers want their local businesses to continue to offer pandemic-friendly services like contactless payments. An easy way for your funeral home to do this is to accept funeral payments directly on your website. Paying online with a credit card or electronic check is not just a perk anymore; it is expected of businesses.

However, you do not have to just stop there! To exceed families’ funeral payment expectations, you can offer alternative options, such as crowdfunding, financing, and life insurance assignments.

Interactive Obituaries
Your funeral home can bring families together online with permanent virtual tributes directly on your website. It is about more than just viewing the obituary and service information. It is about creating a virtual space for families to share memories, photos, videos, and more to honor their loved one’s memory.

Additionally, it can be a space for loved ones to express their condolences and show their support. Donating to crowdfunding campaigns and sending sympathy flowers are just two more ways to create a truly interactive obituary experience.

SSL Security
Per Comodo, more than 50% of users would leave an unsecured website. Even if someone is not tech savvy, search engines like Google make it easy for families to tell if a website is secure. One simple way to tell is if the URL begins with HTTPS (secure) or HTTP (not secure). To make it even more obvious, Google shows users a warning message when a website is not secure.

That is why a good funeral home website needs a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate to protect your families’ sensitive information. This simply scrambles data in a way that hackers cannot understand.

SEO Best Practices
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps your funeral home get found by more families online. With a well-optimized website, your funeral home is more likely to show up in the search results when a family searches for funeral homes in your area.

A few SEO best practices are to include relevant keywords and meta descriptions for your webpages. Keywords tell search engines what your website content is about, while meta descriptions are what appear in search results below your webpage links. A responsive website design also boosts your funeral home’s SEO!

By implementing the features above, your firm can create a good funeral home website that meets families’ funeral expectations. Having a customized, responsive design with preplanning tools all on a secure platform will not only meet their needs but exceed them. FBA

Jenny Goldade is the Senior Content Specialist at Frazer Consultants, a funeral technology company that specializes in funeral home website design, personalization software, marketing solutions, and more. For more than four years, she has been writing and learning about the funeral profession to help make funeral directors’ lives easier. For more information, she can be reached at [email protected]