Fun fact, did you know that 66% of people change their job every year? In addition to that, almost 20% of addresses and 18% of telephone numbers change every year. To sum it up, it’s safe to say that a typical business’s customer data decays at a rate of 30% per year. Here’s another shocker: in the B2B industry, the situation is even worse as data dilapidates to a much greater extent due to high turnover rates, meaning that almost 70% of all the data goes bad over the course of just one year.
But don’t despair, it would be unrealistic to try and keep all the bad data out of your database all the time. Bad data infiltrates every database, in the form of duplicate contacts, irregularly formatted leads and junk records. But once it’s in, it does need to be sorted and kept clean. So check out these three simple ways to keep your company data clean and up-to-date.
- Identify Duplicates
Once you start to get some traction in building out your database, duplicates are inevitable. So proactively scrub your data on a regular basis and eliminate duplicate leads as they come in.
Of course, you need to delete with caution, even when there is a duplicate. So dive into both lead records, determine which has the most pertinent data (i.e., email address or phone number) and then merge the records accordingly.
- Check for Uniformity
Uniformity is key to a clean database, but it’s also a challenge. For example, if you let contacts type in their country of residence, rather than choosing from a drop-down menu, you’re bound to collect inconsistent results. Residents of the United States might write “US,” “U.S.,” “USA,” “U.S.A” or “United States of America.”
As you sort through your database, do your best to ensure that all the information is formatted and displayed in a uniform manner.
- Eliminate Junk Contacts
Some anonymous leads will write in “email@example.com” or “firstname.lastname@example.org” to avoid sharing their real email addresses. You don’t want these garbage leads polluting your database, so run smart campaigns to automatically identify records with bogus email addresses and then delete, blacklist or suspend these contacts.