IBM research claims that 27% of business leaders do not know how corrupted their data is and that’s a big mistake. Missing, ambiguous, outdated, inconsistent, duplicate, and other faulty entries can easily disrupt your marketing and sales initiatives and damage your brand reputation.
Poor Salesforce data will result in a lack of centralized view of the prospect, inability to properly segment contacts for sales & marketing campaigns, spamming of your potential customers, and skewing open rates of email campaigns for adequate analysis.
Based on Gartner’s Data Quality Market Survey, organizations can lose up to $15 million a year on average because of poor data. And without the right Salesforce data cleansing strategy, all these data issues will repeat again and again.
But, how do you deal with identifying bad Salesforce data? Do you export .CSV files and use Excel functions and VLOOKUP to identify them? Or do you find corrupted data in Salesforce and merge it manually? And how much time and, consequently, money do you lose on these cleanup activities?
The good news: you can easily automate this process due to Salesforce data cleansing tools and significantly cut downtime on data hygiene. Moreover, even for free!
And together with our Salesforce data clean-up servicesand best practices outlined in our article, you can enhance your data cleansing tools and be proactive in dealing with data issues and simplify a data cleaning process. But, let go over all the discussed topics step-by-step:
What is bad data in Salesforce?
What is Salesforce data cleaning?
Benefits of Salesforce data hygiene
Top 5 free Salesforce data cleansing tools
Salesforce data cleansing best practices
What is Bad Data in Salesforce?
There are a few common data-related errors in Salesforce among which are:
Common Data-Related Errors in Salesforce
Misprints and misspells
Formatting errors with phone numbers and addresses
Typos caused by importing and exporting data between platforms
Missing or inconsistent values for critical fields
Outdated and unused fields that simply mess up the database
So as to minimize the negative impact of the poor datasets, you need to be proactive in gathering, auditing, and cleansing data. Moreover, in-time Salesforce deduplication & formatting can instill trust in your internal teams in your data and help maximize marketing investments.
Let’s dwell on some must-follow Salesforce data cleansing best practices for reducing the impact of poor data in any database.
Data deduping – seeking and elimination of duplicate information
Data enrichment – filling out missing fields with missing information like gender, location, job title, records enhancement & updating of collected data
Data normalization – correction and standardizing on how data is structured across the dataset
Data validation – verifying the accuracy and consistency of data
In turn, all the data cleansing tools can be divided into several groups:
Salesforce Data Cleansing Tools Types
Solutions for CRM audit to detect broad errors
Tools to correct errors and missing fields
Deduplication products to remove duplicate information
The Salesforce data cleansing process also helps review the system users and their access levels. For example, get an insight on what CRM users left the company or changed their roles, understand if all administrators need access to certain data, see if there are any reports or test campaigns that need to be deleted. These and other processes can complicate the Org use and should be performed as part of your Salesforce data clean-up process.
If you can’t decide where to start with your data cleanup process, need help with identifying errors and main cause analysis to see the factors causing your data quality issues, complete a Salesforce audit to see the gaps in the system, seek Salesforce consultants’ assistance. They will help your organization set up and enforce effective data management policies.
Duplicated information can cost companies up to 12% of their overall revenue that’s why data deduplication is one of the pillar aspects of data cleansing. Data deduplication, in turn, implies identifying and removing exact and fuzzy duplicates.
And to succeed with data deduplication activities, you not only need the tool that will help you get rid of the existing duplicates but also prevent your system from creating new ones.
Every business, depending on their goals, challenges and their database size will require different solutions. We’ve reviewed free Salesforce data cleansing solutions that will fit even start-up and non-profit companies with the minimum budget along with their ranking, features, pros, and cons.
Free basic duplicate check functionality for up to 10, 000 records
Duplicate check: check for duplicate records across two different objects/platforms
Fuzzy matching: finds duplicate records with errors (spelling, typos, format, etc.)
Direct processing: analyzes incoming records with existing ones, if it is already existing, Direct Processing automatically merges the data on the spot (via API, web-to-lead, import, or Marketing integration).
Can be integrated via DC Apex API, REST API, Apex plugins, and Flow Actions.
Duplicate Check Pros:
Customer service has a very helpful sales and support team
Saves company time by automatically deduping rather than manually having to process
Easy to adapt and use
Duplicate Check Cons:
Unable to add custom objects to the free version
Free version limits to the first 10,000 search results
Tool called “Unique Entry” that alerts users when they’re entering a lead that has the potential to have a duplicate (although it costs $)
RingLead Dupe Dive Cons
Some necessary features cost money
The long learning curve to the product
Doesn’t offer update automation, have to manually review and make decisions
How Ascendix Search Can Help with Salesforce Data Management
If you want to use your CRM more efficiently, improve your data management, build targeted prospect lists, locate your properties on a map, track lease expirations, the Ascendix Search app for Salesforce.
Also, by using the Ascendix Search app, you can perform complex searching of data using filters and criteria that are not always available in standard Salesforce functionality, which is especially helpful if have to deal with huge volumes of information on a daily basis, save more time on winning more deals.
You can look for entities, for example, by relationship type, location, lease expiration date, availability of the lease in the submarket of “X”. Then, you can easily save the search lists for future use (e.g., call list, mass email list) and build multiple lists based on your criteria and use them to call your prospects.
This app can also serve as a perfect data-cleanup tool. If you need to update multiple records with a value (leads, contacts, accounts, opportunities, cases, and any other objects), you can use the mass edit feature.
For example, if you have TX and Texas in the field ‘State’ and want to make sure that all records have the same value, Ascendix Search list views will help you look for contacts with misspelled or wrong states and correct them.
How to Look for Contacts with the Wrong States in Ascendix Search
To check such contacts you can build a list with contact details:
How to Create a List to Check Contacts with the Wrong States in Ascendix Search
Also, you can visualize and identify corrupted contact details that need to be unified with the help of charts in the Ascendix Search app and then correct them in bulk.
How to Use Ascendix Search Charts to Visualize Data and Identify Information that Should Be Unified
Here is how you can mass update fields in Ascendix Search:
Ascendix Search: Bulk Update of Incorrect State
In addition to this, Ascendix Search enables adding multiple notes, scheduling multiple calls, events and sending mass emails easily. As a result, you get the data you need faster and become more efficient in your activities.
Salesforce Data Cleansing Best Practices
Keeping your CRM data clean is not only a technical activity. It also involves a creative mind, time, and intimate knowledge of the business nuances and customers to ensure complete data hygiene. And the first step towards Salesforce data hygiene is integrating the disparate databases into one repository.
Salesforce Data Cleansing Best Practices
#1 — Unified Database
The more disintegrated systems you have, the higher the chance that you waste time on the unnecessary lead and opportunity nurturing, that, probably have already been contacted by your team.
Also, such behavior can negatively reflect on your brand reputation.
How can I trust the company that can’t manage even its own database? Salesforce is a perfectly adjustable platform that can be integrated with almost any other system in the market via ready-to-install apps available on AppExchange, API, integrators like Zapier or Workauto, or custom code integration.
In greater detail about intricacies and approaches in system integration with Salesforce and top apps to integrate with your platform right now you may find in our Salesforce integration guide, or, if you have a specific question about solutions synching or how to integrate other CRM software with Salesforce, ask our Salesforce consultants directly.
You never know exactly how much bad data your CRM contains until you discover how much trouble it causes and how many missed opportunities poor data results in.
So, any organization that collects a considerable amount of customer data should conduct regular checkups to assess it.
And you can do it two ways: by using Salesforce data cleansing tools or, if you are totally new to the platform, seek help with Salesforce data clean-up services from consulting agencies.
Salesforce consulting firms like Ascendix will help you diagnose the gaps in the CRM system through which you get the most of inaccurate data, set up rules to enable data deduplication and formatting rules, advise on the best Salesforce data management tools, design your individual data cleansing project plan and educate your teams on how to perform data audit and cleanup.
And with Salesforce data cleansing tools you can spot records & fields with specific types of errors like improper formatting and missing data.
Manual data entry from customer forms or by your teams almost always results in a high level of data errors. Especially, if you have large amounts of data input.
To ensure Salesforce data hygiene, the best thing you can do is to enable proper CRM data validation on forms that enter your database and proper formatting of emails, names, and phone numbers.
Moreover, it’s necessary to do overall data validation checks from time to time that hit your database. Because there are many sources through which bad data can leak into it besides manual input. For example, it can be imported, or integrated from a different system.
Or come through gated content like e-books and whitepapers. Make sure that you request only relevant information. If you have too many input fields, customers will just enter random data in order to access the content.
For datasets with a large volume of entries, having the right data cleansing products at your fingertips is a must.
Since it’s nearly impossible for your team members to run data cleanup on Excel for datasets that contain thousands or even millions of records. In addition to this, VLOOKUP queries won’t capture all data-related issues and there will always be gaps.
What’s more, we will assist you with the selection of the most versatile Salesforce duplicate management tool for bulk cleaning or solution for scheduling automated data cleansing on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
If you want to maintain your data clean and consistent, you should educate your team members on the importance of data quality standards and deploy Salesforce data cleansing best practices into your business operations.
To guarantee long-term Salesforce data integrity you need to take certain steps to decrease the amount of poor Salesforce data coming into your database and set higher data standards.
Analyze data quality to see and demonstrate to your teams how much bad data your organization is handling.
Include proper validation on all customer-facing and internal data capture forms
Review lead and opportunity management processes to unify standards for data entry for different systems used in a company. For instance, sales reps and marketing specialists use Salesforce differently and do not have common standards for data entry for lead and opportunity name or phone number formatting.
Educate your staff on data input standards and best practices.
Train your employees on how to use your Salesforce data cleansing tool.
Have a person who will regularly check data quality, data duplicates and will work with teams to fix errors and enrich your CRM data with useful info.
Data like prospects’ phone numbers and email addresses become outdated very quickly: employees change their jobs, companies go through mergers and acquisitions, and contact information changes.
So, you end up sending out the wrong message to the wrong person, unless you constantly refresh that information. By improving the quality of your data, you’ll also get more accurate insights and gain a complete view of your customer. And to ensure the data quality, schedule recurring events to tackle data cleanup and enrichment.
Bottom Line: Why Salesforce Data Cleansing with Ascendix?
Data is the lifeblood of your business and so as to make more accurate business decisions, you need to work with structured data. This means accurate, consistent, and complete information.
Hygienic data give you more opportunities to achieve your sales & marketing goals, increase the accuracy of sales reports and forecasts, sales reps’ productivity, and shorter sales cycles. And your data cleansing activities should be performed both on the business and the technology sides.
Ascendix Technologies is a Salesforce consulting firm with 25 years of CRM consulting experience. With our services, you can accelerate your workforce productivity and eliminate the complexities of your Salesforce solution.
Our Salesforce consultants can enhance your relationships with your CRM data considering your core business values and delivering well-balanced services of high-end Salesforce technology and our industry expertise. Contact us and empower your staff with quality data right now!
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