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We often get asked by people how to get started in a funeral template business. Our advice: do so with eyes wide open. People who are interested in this type of business must look at all the areas before deciding to pursue this line of work. Since we started our online superstore in 2009, there have been many more websites rising up to sell templates for memorial services. Most of these sites do not offer the quality we provide and lack many other aspects of what it takes to really get this business going.
This article is not meant to scare anyone away but only to share with you the real struggles and expectations on what you may encounter when running a funeral program business. We will be candid on our facts and share with you what we have seen first hand either through our experience or by those we've known.
If you are considering a program business in which you are creating your own templates and sell them, you should consider what I am about to share carefully. As it could make or break your goals even before you get started. Know that there are many road blocks along the way and you must learn how to get passed them to succeed.
Firstly, this is not an easy business. Although it may appear to be, it is so much more involved than just creating a design, putting it into a word format and displaying it for sale on a website. You must deal with customers daily who are grieving, under a tight time constraint and are very emotional. You must be immediately available either by phone or email with quick responses to inquiries.
You must be able to provide quality technical support for Microsoft Word in all of its versions. If you lack the technical expertise with this software, your success will depend on it. Customers will call you expecting you to assist them with problems in the creation of their program via the template and you are expected to answer and fix it all. You have to keep in mind that every version of WORD varies, as far as functionality and procedures, so you will need to be familiar with how each version works. You must be able to troubleshoot over the phone an issues the customer may be encountering and walk them through a resolution. Often times, your template will be to blame for procedural problems the customer may be having (regardless if there is any validity to it or not).
If you are able to get through functional assistance with your template, there are also questions about printing. This may be the hardest of all since every printer is different. If your template cannot be printed for whatever reason, your customer will not be happy. Every customer will have a different knowledge base and some more knowledgeable than others, so you must be prepared to deal with those who know very little about working in Word. You must be able to talk them through any type of problem or issue. That includes basic computer functions such as downloading an attachment.
With sites like Etsy getting on the band wagon on selling funeral related templates, you will be up against some tough competition. Your website, or whatever channel you choose to sell through requires maintenance and up to date images and videos. This area alone takes much work and should be done by a dedicated person. When your just starting out, the temptation to do it all yourself is great for cost effective purposes, but there are only so many hours in the day and you are only one person. So you will need to prioritize accordingly, depending on your goals.
Most of all, you will need the patience of a saint. If you do not have patience with various types of personalities and problems that arise, it will reflect in your response and assistance to your customers. Because you are dealing with high emotions due to the loss of a loved one, people can be more sensitive and less willing to listen to reason, which is all expected from a death in the family. You must be able to deal with all of it.
When creating background designs, you will need to ensure all your background images are not copyrighted and that you have the right to use them for resale purposes or to modify them for derivative works. Over the years, we have had just about every issue or problem come up and we are thankful to have gone through them still shining like a copper penny. It never ceases to amaze me how many websites/individuals choose to enter this business only provide a portion of what it really entails. How can you provide a whole apple if you are only willing to give a piece of it? It's just not possible and the longevity of those websites will be tested thoroughly as time goes on, and the strong survives. The work does not stop after the template is purchased, and the weak will fall by the wayside.
We have personally known a funeral program template business who was actually one of the pioneers in this industry, along with us, who shutdown and went out of business after a decade of providing his templates online. It wasn't because of the lack of quality of his designs, on the contrary, they were very good. It was the other, more important part of customer service that the business suffered from which was the demise.
Remember to consider the whole apple before diving in. It may save you much headaches and frustration later. Make no mistake about it, this is a challenging business but can also be a rewarding one if you truly enjoy helping those in the death care industry and bereaved. If your heart is just in it to make money, then your looking into the wrong business. If you truly have a compassionate heart to serve those who are grieving, then this may be the road to travel. Just like not everyone can be a funeral director, it takes special people to be able to open up a business such as this.
Hello! Welcome to our new website! We are sure you are going to love it! Actually we've had this site in the making for a few years now. We wanted to make sure we looked at every option when we upgraded our site so that we can bring you the very best experience. No doubt [...]