Funeral homes with cremation services have become the norm: as cremation has surpassed traditional casket burial as America’s top option for “final disposition” of deceased remains. In the span of a single generation, cremation has gone from being an “alternative” choice for Americans to consider in terms of planning for their deaths, to the leading preference according to several mainstream surveys.
2015 marked the first year in which cremations outpaced traditional burials, according to a report by the National Funeral Director’s Association, with 48.5% of Americans opting to have cremation vs burial rates of 45.4%. The result of these changing consumer choices has had a financial impact on the funeral industry.he cost of a cremation service can be lower than that of a traditional burial. While memorial services can still be packaged with cremation, there are associated costs of a burial that are higher than cremation (casket selection, embalming, graveside services, etc.).. Another interesting trend is that some families are opting to buy low-cost direct cremation arrangements and then organizing their own gatherings to commemorate their loved ones, sometimes the gatherings are outside the funeral home without the assistance of funeral home staff.
While some Funeral Homes embrace the more traditional option of burial, those who have found opportunities to cater to the demands of affordable cremation services have established themselves in a position to capitalize on this shift of attitudes. While traditionalists have a view that there are fewer services to offer with a cremation-based arrangement vs a burial arrangement, the reduction in required services has been recognized by others as an opportunity. There are ways to streamline and simplify their offerings in ways that provide valuable services to their clients while reducing the cost in the process of handling a cremation.
Several funeral homes have begun processing direct cremation services online, through platforms such as those offered by SimpleCremationUSA.com: a website that allows funeral homes to process their customer’s cremation orders entirely through a convenient online cremation service. By leveraging automated online processes, cremation can actually become a highly profitable service of funeral directors who recognize the opportunity to provide a fundamental necessity in society and can do so through channels that provide the information required at a lower cost. . In many cases, direct online cremation requires a minimal time commitment with customers by the funeral home staff. There still is an opportunity to build a relationship with customer and to offer value added services! : In addition to the cost savings, many advocates of cremation point to the environmental impact of burial: including land use, to maintenance requirements, and even the chemicals used to embalm the deceased; there are many factors that contribute to the argument that cremation provides a more sustainable, eco-friendly approach than traditional burial.
Given the social trends of cost-consciousness, environmental-consciousness, and preference of services that can be easily accessed through the Internet, it is no surprise that cremation has emerged as the preferred method of disposition among Americans since 2015, and will continue to be popular among younger generations. Based on the current trajectory, it appears nearly certain that cremation will continue to expand its reach in the end of life services market.
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