How to keep your CRM platform data clean?

How can you make sure your CRM data is clean? Start by following a few steps to make your CRM structured and flawless. Below, we also include the procedures to keep it that way.

#1 Delete or merge duplicate records

Eliminate duplicates as the first step in cleaning up your CRM database as a CRM platform owner. Duplicate records happen for a number of reasons, including multiple team members entering the same data on multiple dates, data import that doesn’t account for existing entries, or a client submitting data multiple times.

Duplicates must be removed or merged with their existing equivalents, regardless of how they entered the system. However, the burden of manually detecting and removing duplicates when you have thousands of records is intimidating and impractical. Consider the following strategies:

  • Use duplication checking software to see if there are duplicates. Salesforce, for example, has a free tool that checks for duplication.
  • Use a case merge software like Case Merge Premium, which goes above and beyond by not only finding duplicates but also merging them all at once.
  • Block duplication from the beginning in the future. Find out if your CRM offers a native ability to prevent duplicate cases at the entry point after existing duplicates have been removed. If this is the case, you can instantly prevent future duplication by notifying users when they try to enter one.

#2 Limit the Number of Administrative Users

Consider restricting the number of team members with full administrative rights within the system as part of your attempt to minimize and avoid duplicate entries. According to the CIO, the number of administrators with full system access should be kept to six, but this is just a guide.

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The ideal amount for you will depend on the size of your company and the nature of your business. Keeping the number of administrators under control helps maintain your processes and can prevent an unqualified team member from inadvertently disabling an essential duplication checker.

#3 Create a set of data entry best practices

When critical information is missing or inconsistently documented, data becomes a problem. You can make your CRM software much more efficient in the future by establishing standard procedures for data entry.

Your duplicate checker will identify a duplicate instance faster if the records are more complete. Analyze the information you have collected.

Is there a clear and consistent set of rules and procedures for entering the following data points?

  • Do you use official names or can you also use nicknames? Are all names capitalized?
  • How are physical addresses abbreviated?
  • Do you delete the old address or keep it in a secondary field if you receive a new one? Users must connect the entries of people residing at the same address in the same household.
  • Occupational titles: Are the titles spelled out in full or are they abbreviated? A small difference between the words “Doctor” and “Dr.” may result in an inadvertent duplicate entry.
  • Notes: What is the best way for people to use the notes field? If your company only uses this area for information that doesn’t fit into any other field, such as a customer’s preferred name, make sure all team members know this.

Once you’ve decided on your standards and standard practices, be sure to record them and make them available to all users who will have access to the CRM system.

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#4 Make a maintenance schedule

It is now in excellent condition, with duplicates handled, administrators chosen correctly, and a login procedure in place. CRM cleanup, like most things, is not a “set it and forget it” task. Everything from a weekly scan for identified duplicates to quarterly checks for available CRM software updates is included in maintenance.

Spend time clearing up poor records or checking missing data regularly, and consider using automatic reminders or work assignments to make sure nothing slips between the cracks. It’s also worth noting that you should create a procedure in your CRM system to inventory stale, old, and uncommitted data.

Use CRM’s reporting capabilities to generate a report of your oldest records. Consider placing it on responsible team members’ dashboards or home screens to remind them to handle such data in accordance with corporate rules.

#5 Create a ‘No Shortcuts’ Rule

Some people are lazy when it comes to entering CRM data. They just get distracted by other activities and fail to complete the task at hand.

They may include an organization’s name and phone number when moving from meeting to meeting or job to job, but leave out contact information. Maybe they wanted to double check the contact name and put it off for later. If this doesn’t happen, your business will start accumulating a CRM full of incomplete records.

You will need the full name of the contact. You should include a phone number, email address, and any other information you feel is necessary for consumers to shop at your business. Recognize the dangers of entering shortcuts with CRM data and avoid them.

#6 Determine who is inactive

If someone looks at a record in the CRM and has to ask themselves, “How the hell did it get there?” that’s a good sign. You have a data cleanup problem.

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While most businesses naturally focus their efforts on finding the consumers who show the strongest signs of purchase intent, you must constantly filter out those who will never become customers.

If a customer or prospect hasn’t interacted with you in months or even years, it’s time to locate another contact or remove them from your CRM.

This practice will often reveal that the reason you are inactive is that you have been trying to get in touch with someone who has long since left their job. They may have transferred to a different department within the same company.

The business has been purchased or merged with others on many occasions. You may not have the correct contact information.

Clean CRM data is data you can trust. It’s data you can use to grow your business.

Most people will recognize it. It’s simply a matter of being deliberate to make sure it’s there.

#7 Prevent bots from gaining access

When consumers download an item like an ebook, marketing teams use forms to collect leads behind the scenes. These forms collect a large amount of CRM data. However, such forms are not always filled out by real people.

Even if your IT staff is small, there are often simple solutions that can be used to keep bots out of your CRM.

It might involve asking someone to fill out a CAPTCHA before submitting a form or simply using a filter to exclude suspicious email addresses and domains.

final thoughts

Keeping CRM data clean is everyone’s duty, and the benefits of doing so include a greater understanding of your customers and the ability to interact with them efficiently. If you need help getting started with a CRM data maintenance plan, please contact us.

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