Starting a cremation business can be a lucrative and fulfilling endeavor. It is important to understand the necessary steps to opening a new business before starting. This article will outline the basic steps for starting a cremation business, as well as some helpful tips along the way.
Here are ten steps you can take to start building your own cremation business.
Ten Steps to Launching a New Cremation Business
1. Choose Your Type of Cremation Business
The first step in launching a cremation business is to identify the type of cremation business you want to launch.
You might choose from the following types among others:
- A direct cremation business offers cremation services without a funeral service. The body is cremated shortly after death, and the ashes are returned to the family.
- A memorial service business provides a funeral service with or without the body present, followed by cremation.
- A full-service funeral home offers funeral services, including embalming and preparation of the body, use of a funeral home, visitation, and a funeral service with or without cremation.
2. Name Your Cremation Business
Give your cremation business an identity so people will think of it as a well-known and respected brand. You can take the name of your cremation business from your geographical location or use your name among other options.
The main goal for naming your cremation business is to make it sound appealing and trustworthy so people will know they can rely on your services.
3. Determine Your Cremation Business Model
There are several possible types of business models for a cremation business, including:
- A mobile business where you bring the cremation equipment to the customer’s location
- A storefront business with a physical location where people can come to you
- An online business that offers cremation services remotely
No matter which model you choose, make sure that it aligns with your business goals and the products and services you offer.
4. Choose a Legal Form for Your Business
By incorporating your cremation business, you will limit your liability. You can incorporate as a Limited Liability Company (LLC), a C Corporation (C-Corp), or an S Corporation (S-Corp). Or you can operate as a sole proprietorship.
The business structure you choose for your cremation business will determine the amount of taxes you pay and which state or federal tax forms you need to file.
Read our article comparing the most common cremation business structures.
5. Write a Cremation Business Plan
All cremation business owners should develop a business plan.
A business plan is a document that outlines the goals, strategies, and operations of a business. It can be used to secure funding from investors or lenders, as well as to guide the day-to-day operations of the business. The business plan should include information on the company’s products or services, market analysis, financial projections, and management team among other things.
Read our article about how to write a cremation business plan.
6. Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses
There may be required licenses and permits you need to obtain before launching your cremation business.
For example, to operate a crematory, you will need to obtain a permit from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Depending on your state, you may also need to be licensed by the state funeral board.
You must also register your cremation business as a legal entity with the state where you plan to do business. You can simply file an online form through your Secretary of State’s website.
Registering with the federal government is also essential so you can properly pay taxes for your business. You will also need an Employer Identification Number (EIN), which you can apply for at the IRS website, if you plan to hire employees.
Read our article about obtaining the proper cremation business licenses.
7. Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed
In developing your cremation business plan, you will figure out how much funding you need to start and grow your business.
If you have funds to invest in your cremation business, you may consider taking advantage of that. In addition to your personal funds, other forms of potential funding for your cremation business include traditional bank loans, SBA loans, credit cards, angel investors, and family and friends.
Read our article about the costs associated with starting a cremation business to help you determine if funding is needed.
8. Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently
When you start your cremation business, it’s essential to have the right technology in place to maximize efficiency. You definitely need a computer with Internet access, and accounting software for tracking expenses and revenues.
You may also want to invest in a customer relationship management (CRM) system to help you manage customer data. A CRM system can track leads, sales, and customers.
You can also consider a funeral home software solution that offers an all-in-one platform for managing every aspect of your cremation business, including pricing, marketing, bookings, and payments.
9. Market Your Cremation Business to Potential Customers
Before you start selling your plots and services, you must let the world know you exist. The first step is to create a website so people can learn more about your products and services and how they benefit them.
After you launch your website, start promoting it through online channels like:
- Sponsoring or exhibiting at local events
- Mailing brochures to local
- Sending out press releases to local media outlets
- Advertising in local print, radio, or TV outlets
Read our article about how to market your cremation business for more tips.
10. Get New Customers & Grow Your Business
When you promote your products and services, you’ll start to get interest from potential customers.
Make sure you’re ready to serve these customers. Also, be sure to establish systems to ensure consistency and reduce costs. And be sure to find and train the right people to help you grow your cremation business.
Read our article about how to effectively grow your cremation business to learn more.
Starting a Cremation Business FAQs
Why Start a Cremation Business?
Cremation businesses offer a needed service to the community. Not only do they provide a way for people to dispose of the bodies of their loved ones, but they also offer support and assistance during the grieving process.
Cremation businesses are also in high demand. According to the National Funeral Directors Association, cremations are expected to make up over half of all funerals by 2035.
What are Some Tips for Starting a Cremation Business?
Here are some tips for starting a cremation business:
- Research the industry and your competition
- Plan your business carefully
- Choose the right location
- Obtain the necessary licenses and permits
- Invest in the right technology and software
- Create a well-designed website
Where Can I Find a Simple Checklist for Starting a Cremation Business?
A simple checklist to use when starting a cremation business is as follows:
- Choose Your Type of Cremation Company: This should be based on what you are best at and how much experience you have. Remember to keep your interests, skills, and experience in mind at all times.
- Name Your Cremation Business: This should be done with care, as your brand is important for attracting the right customers. A simple, memorable name will go a long way.
- Choose a Legal Form for Your Business: Whether you choose to become a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, corporation or another option will depend on your business. Ensure that you are aware of all the implications of each type.
- Determine Your Cremation Business Model: Determine how your business will make money. Will you sell products, services, or a combination of both?
- Write a Cremation Business Plan: Your business plan will also help you determine what your start-up costs will be and will provide a roadmap with which you can launch and grow.
- Apply for the Necessary Permits and Licenses: In most locations you will be required to apply for a business license and/or permits before you can begin operations.
- Determine Your Budget & Apply for Funding as Needed: You will need to know how much money you have to spend on all of your business-related expenses before opening any doors. If needed, apply for a small business loan or other funding options.
- Get the Technology & Software Needed to Run Your Business Efficiently: You need to have the right tools in place to succeed. Implement software that will help you manage your time, contacts, and business operations in general.
- Market Your Cremation Business to Potential Customers: A solid marketing plan will be crucial to your success. It should focus on attracting the right customers so that you can provide them with the products and services they truly need.
- Get Customers & Grow Your Business: Once you have a solid marketing plan, it's time to actively pursue and secure those who could benefit the most from your products and services.
Starting a cremation business can be a great way to enter the funeral industry. It is important to plan carefully before starting any new business. Make sure you have all of the necessary licenses and permits and invest in the right technology and software to help you run your business efficiently.
Additionally, create a well-designed website that promotes your products and services. Most importantly, focus on marketing your business to potential customers so that you can secure new clients and grow your business.