Most funeral homes resell coffins, urns and headstones they bought from casket manufacturers. Some stores have their own production units and in-house workers who manufacture their coffins. Obviously this is a pretty rare scenario. Unless they want to hold a large variety of designs and styles in their inventory, most in-house coffin manufacturers only produce custom made coffins. However, unless you're willing to shell out considerable amounts of money for a custom casket, your best bet is to buy a casket from a casket store.
Its all about supply and demand. Funeral homes carry limited stock because demand is low. They will sell on average 2 or 3 coffins a month. Casket Stores however cater to a broader market and carry a significantly larger inventory. In our case, we sell hundreds of caskets a month requiring our supply to be much higher. Since we order and manufacture in bulk, coffin prices are lower. Simple as that.
Discount caskets are not low on quality in any sense. No compromises have been made on the caskets for sale. They are the very same units you would find in any regular priced list. Unfortunately, most people don't think of looking for caskets on sale before they have to. Its only when there is an imminent funeral at hand will they start shopping around and miss out on the deals.
Don't be shy to shop for and ask for a list of coffins on sale. Some might not even be on display. Be sure to look for deals. It may even lead you to saving over $5000 on a funeral.
I often get emails from online entrepeneurs asking me for tricks and tips to get into the online funeral business. I have nothing to hide and don't mind sharing with all my readers how I got started in the coffin business. Here's a step by step explanation on how you could start your very own casket store.
There are many steps to opening any new business branch, and the coffin business is no different. You must thoroughly research your market to determine whether your local community can support a store for coffins. For example, can you be competitive and differentiate yourself from existing stores? You could offer different types of coffins and caskets above and below $ 999. You could also offer to greet your customers by working directly with funeral homes, giving your business a personnal touch.
- Contact casket retailers and manufacturers to evaluate the costs of purchasing and storing your coffins. Ask if the wood, metal and similar types of coffins can be purchased directly from the manufacturer. Your choices are maple, oak, steel, wood, bronze, mahogany and a slew of other styles.
- Determine how quickly both regular and customized coffins can be delivered. Customers with special designs, modifications or in need of a faster service for large people will contact you. You must prepare a contingency plan for them as well. You must also prepare a list of terms that wave all responsibility for shipping delays due to bad weather or other acts of Murphy's Law.
- Choose an appropriate price for your coffins. Evaluate the wholesale price and add a reasonable markup, so that your income covers all expenses. For example, if a unit costs $ 650 wholesale, sell it for $ 1,050 to cover labor, rent and other costs.
- Location. Location. Location. Choose a suitable location. Consider renting or buying property in the vicinity of a funeral home or cemetery. If you are planning to go the online route, invest in a storage are to keep your stock safe.
- Keep advertising your services through traditional and unconventional channels. I recommend you may advertise somewhere near the obituaries in your local newspaper. Even a simple website (like this one) can bring in potential clients.
Final Tips Tricks
Join local business associations, state and national efforts to expand your networking opportunities. Funeral Directors are also a great source of reference.
Be aware of how many casket stores are in your community. Opening up a 4th Casket Store may saturate your market if you're in city with less than 300 000 people.