In order for your sales team to be successful, your Salesforce should be up relevant, de-duped and normalized. Effесtivе рlаn fоr еntеring, cleaning аnd updating thе dаtа fоr уоur ѕаlеѕfоrсе iѕ сritiсаl for асhiеving success. Pооr рlаnning fоr mаnаging thе dаtа entry/data qualitу iѕѕuе hаѕ hiѕtоriсаllу been оnе of thе largest rеаѕоnѕ fоr fаilurе sales and marketing inefficiency.

Thе dаtа quality challenges fасеd bу salesforce users, and thе соrrеѕроnding solutions аnd best рrасtiсеѕ tо be соnѕidеrеd will vary dереnding on the соmраnу sales process аnd size. Hоwеvеr de-duping lead records will go a long way to ensuring sales success. De-duping accounts and contacts should be done on a regular basis as to not contact the same person and company twice!

How to find duplicate Records: 

Typically business can use deduping software to locate duplicates for leads and contacts using email address as the main indicator and websites for company data. Some tools will also allow you to establish duplicates using other fields such as name, address, phone # etc…

Sophisticated companies using machine learning use a combination of fields to identify all possible duplicates. Some tools would allow you to also apply business rules to merge data without losing any data by appending the merged data fields to blank fields of the master record.

The dangerous of using a de-duplication software:

Deduping tools can find duplicates and merge them. However, business sometimes create duplicates for a reason which includes:

  • Same contact working out of 2 or 3 companies or geographic locations. This is especially true for C- Level executives who oversee a region.
  • Parent/Children companies who operate out of the same corporate address but have two different business units. This is especially true for enterprise accounts.
  • Implementation of Salesforce. Some companies will implement salesforce differently then how the majority of businesses use it with leads that convert to contacts/accounts and create opportunities. Therefore, creating duplicates as a process.

Way to establish Master/Merge hierarchy: 

The ideal way to de-dupe records in Salesforce is to establish business rules for identifying the master (surviving record). The rules will typically include:

  • Data completeness
  • Latest Data – Recency
  • Record Type
  • # of Opportunities associated with an account (for account de-duping).
  • # of Notes/Tasks attached (for lead de-duping).
  • Custom Fields

When Should You De-Dupe your Salesforce: 

Deduping salesforce should be done on a regular basis. Most companies will do a “spring cleaning” on their Salesforce, when the de-duplication rate reaches over 3%. A quick test is to see how many email and company website’s duplicates are found and if that number exceeds 3% they identify it as an indicator to clean. However, each company is different for some 10% is acceptable rate because of business rules which encourage duplicates.

How will de-duping save your organization money? 

De-duping while an expense whether you use a data deduplication service such as StrategicDB or a de-duplication tool.  The expense is usually much smaller if you consider the cost of:

  • Your sales team calling the same company
  • Marketing costs of purchasing leads that are already in your system
  • Reporting is not accurate, as records are miscalculated which screws up your funnel analysis and projections
  • Paying for storage of extra data that is not needed (this is the case if you are linking it to third party tools which charge by # of rows)
  • Company image when you contact the same person/company twice with different offers, sales people, etc…
  • The list can go on and on….

Typical cost of de-duping Salesforce: 

The cost of de-duping salesforce depends on how many records your salesforce has. It also depends on the complexity of the de-duplication process. However, it typically starts at $2,500 for services and tools range from per record $0.05 cost to $5,000+ per year.

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