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Digging into the Customer Experience: Brokerage, Online and OffBrokerage is Corporate Insight’s original areas of expertise, dating back to the introduction of Broker Monitor and e-Monitor in the 1990s. Our value-added brokerage and online services research digs deeply to identify and assess specific aspects of the customer experience.
This report highlights Estate Planning. We reviewed all 21 Broker Monitor firms’ offerings.
A well-crafted estate plan is essential for clients to assure that their money will be tended to as they see proper. This can be difficult, and many clients rely on the help of advisors. Any brokerage firm that focuses on lifetime financial planning should be sure to offer clients estate planning advice, resources and tools.
While most firms offer trust accounts and some basic online information on estate planning, we found that two-thirds of firms offer estate planning services from financial advisors or through dedicated estate planning teams. It is primarily the full-service and hybrid firms that offer these services. Discount firms generally don’t offer specialized estate planning services.
One of the areas we looked at was how easy it is for prospects to locate an advisor for estate planning. We found that fewer than 25% of firms allow prospects to filter for financial advisors online specifically for estate planning. Two firms provide this as an option on their financial advisor search tools. Two other firms provide a similar option on their “have us contact you” forms, though not on the main advisor search tools.
We found that online resources related to estate planning varied quite a bit across firms. While general informational pages are common, far fewer firms provide educational articles on various estate planning-related topics. Less than 30% of firms provide helpful estate planning checklists, and only two firms provide estate planning-specific glossaries.
Key findings of the report include the following: