A fully integrated partnership
Finding and buying a funeral plan online is, by nature, something you only do once. It’s a complex and sensitive area, and we wanted to stand out from the competition and position Golden Charter as the best and most trustworthy choice. We did this by holding the user’s hand throughout the process, providing relevant information in an engaging manner at every stage.
Our integrated approach that combined on-site evolution with Outreach, paid search, SEO and Affiliates activities improved the customer experience at every touchpoint and drove increased revenue.
Building an enhanced user journey
Every visitor to Golden Charter’s website would have key questions. Namely why they might need a funeral plan, why they should choose Golden Charter, and which plan and payment option would be right for them.
We created a strategy to develop an experience that told a story, reassured users about brand values, educated them on the product, and made it easy to compare plans. We gave the content a caring, friendly feel, avoiding the hard sell at all costs.
Using a component-based approach, we created a flexible framework that was easy for the client to manage, and simple for the consumer to use. From a back-end point of view, the site handled multiple third-party and internal integration to ensure a robust, secure and compliant solution.
Fulfilling Golden Charter’s potential
Equator were selected to take responsibility for transforming the group’s integrated marketing after the internal team realised they needed dedicated expertise to fulfil the brand’s potential. We found they had limited reach in key areas and recognised that PPC was becoming expensive. So we supplemented the activity with a more strategic approach, including other channels and activity.
Starting with a full analysis of online activity, we were quickly able to make the PPC and affiliates accounts more efficient and impactful. We then added Display and SEO into Golden Charter’s marketing portfolio, raising awareness of funeral plans as a concept and making a strong connection with our client’s business as the ‘default’ or preferred supplier. This involved a three-month programme targeting the most relevant users across a range of sites, gaining maximum exposure in key publications including online editions of the Mail, Express and Mirror.
With good content, they will come
While most businesses in the sector would naturally focus on sites aimed directly at the elderly and their carers, we found that decisions on funeral plans were often made by people at a considerably younger age, when interests remain broad. That meant we could cast our net much wider.
We looked at financial and general lifestyle pages, including subjects like travel, food and gardening. This meant we could engage with a relevant audience when they were most receptive to new ideas.
Our new, high-quality content meant we could link to these potential customers and keep them interested. We had a much greater opportunity to place links in front of our target audience, and in turn this allowed SEO value to flood back to the Golden Charter domain.
Implementing the technology
Our greenfield Umbraco implementation centred on a flexible component architecture, with product data integrated into CMS. The structure allows automatic product updates, enquiries and purchases to be communicated in real time, integrating seamlessly with Golden Charter’s stock system.
Our strategy contributed to extraordinary growth for Golden Charter, just as the funeral plan concept gained traction in the public imagination. Our client now commands over 40% of the funeral sector’s total sales. Not only did the conversion rate improve significantly, but the quality of leads was higher, with much better enquiry-to-sale conversion rates. At the same time, we’ve reduced cost per engagement. By working in tandem with Golden Charter’s marketing team and optimising all channel activity, we’ve significantly reduced how much the business typically spends to sell a plan.
400% growth in funeral plan sales
We achieved a 40% share of a £650m market.
25% increase in average link domain authority
In addition, our Outreach Program achieved new page ranking for 97 competitive terms and saw Average Domain Authority increase from 40 to 50.
Integrated marketing results
31% increase in enquiries via paid search year on year
In addition, our integrated marketing activity achieved:
- 20% reduction in cost per engagement
- 70% last-click brochure requests through Facebook
- 13% increase in page likes
- 18% increase in brochure requests via organic search year on year
Conversion rates for leads up 200%
Thanks to enhanced content and journeys, the percentage of users buying online increased by over 60%
A long-term, ongoing strategic partnership
Sometimes the product you’re selling is like no other and develop bespoke, data-driven strategies based on customer insights. Our integrated approach demonstrates how a blend of streamlined journeys, better content and more relevant, targeted marketing can deliver a huge impact.