A new online funeral platform, eziFunerals, is changing the way consumers are interacting with the funeral industry and shifting the traditional path to purchase, away from the big funeral chains.

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While in the past consumers would ‘first call’ or only consider the large corporate funeral brands , they are now searching online for independent, transparent and trustworthy information to help navigate their way through the funeral process.

As a result, consumers are more involved than ever, in planning a meaningful funeral online and purchasing a funeral service or product that meets their individual needs.

 

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It’s an issue of trust

Research shows that consumers do not trust the funeral industry. According to Peter Erceg, Owner eziFunerals, “People organising a funeral can be exploited at one of the most emotional and stressful times in their lives.

Why? Take your pick. Misleading and deceptive practices; hidden fees; misrepresentations about products; charging fees for no service; unfair contract terms; complex product bundling; misuse of market power; inflated prices; and anti-competitive conduct by blocking new market entrants, are far too common.

With market share controlled by two listed funeral companies on the Australian Stock Exchange consumers have become very sceptical about the ability of big funeral brands to protect their interests.

“Today’s funeral consumers expect to get fair treatment in the marketplace and avoid unscrupulous practices and dealings with funeral businesses. They expect a fair funeral market environment that facilitates and supports their consumer rights”, says Erceg.

 

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Meeting funeral consumer expectations

eziFunerals has responded to consumer expectations with the recent launch of its ‘Fair Funeral Promise’.

The Fair Funeral Promise is an initiative run by eziFunerals to tackle the underlying issues that gives the funeral industry a bad wrap. It is another example of eziFunerals always putting its customers first, so they can get a fair funeral.

The Fair Funeral Promise is a free and voluntary commitment by selected Independent Funeral Directors that:

  • recognises funerals can be expensive and many people need fair and affordable options.
  • helps people to find funerals that are within their means and budget.
  • provides open and transparent funeral prices, including third party costs.

 

Knowledge is power

Erceg says, “Knowledge is power. Many consumers now prefer to turn to eziFunerals to access funeral information rather than go directly to funeral businesses.”.

This presents a real risk for InvoCare (IVC:ASX) and Propel Funeral Partners (PFP:ASX), as they have less control over the information disseminated and used by consumers to make funeral decisions.

Empowered by eziFunerals, consumers are now much more equipped to do research and purchase a funeral that meets their needs. As a result, the big funeral chains are losing market share to smaller independent and family owned funeral homes.

 

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The path to disruption is here to stay

“This is a disruptive innovation, that’s here to stay. This is going to touch a cultural chord. It aggregates the decision making and it gives consumers a sense of empowerment,” Erceg said.

eziFunerals currently has 600 independent funeral directors listed on the site and offers families information tailored to their needs. Instead of picking a funeral company by guesswork, consumers are able to shop around for funeral directors online, and get the right funeral at the right price.

Erceg sees his online funeral platform model not as undermining funeral directors economically, but as empowering small to medium family owned funeral homes to increase their market share and give huge firms, like InvoCare, a run for their money.

 

 

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About eziFunerals

eziFunerals supports individuals and families cope with end of life decisions, death and funerals. We are an independent, Australian-owned and operated company, and are not a subsidiary of any other corporation. We are not part of any other funeral company.