The success of a company depends on numerous individual parts. One of them is the data substance about your business contacts. If you have a B2B database, you inevitably have to think about cleaning and updating this data. Because only complete and correct data is a success factor that allows your marketing and sales to act in a credible and sustainable manner. So how can the Clean records and reliably up to date? Below you will find answers to these important questions and an informative overview of the topic of database cleaning. From the general objectives to the concrete added value for your company, all aspects are briefly examined.
The most important goals of data cleansing
At the beginning of all considerations, the question arises as to what purpose the cleansing of the data should serve. One of the overriding goals is to search for possible errors such as incorrect or outdated addresses.
- Correct postal addresses mean higher delivery rates and, as a result, lower return rates and savings on unnecessary costs.
- The removal of duplicate entries in the database is also an important goal of database cleansing. Wrong deliveries due to duplicate customer accounts are thus no longer possible.
- The enrichment of missing and required additional information, e.g. industry codes, number of employees or turnover, could be another goal of your database cleansing. While marketing and sales need company information to better select new customer potential, finance departments often want support in obtaining credit reports. The enrichment of unique account numbers of the credit agency in the customer accounts simplifies the processing.
- Furthermore, it is a matter of checking the coherence and interrelationships of all available data records. In practice, this puts your sales team in the comfortable position of being able to recognise company interdependencies and use them for their own benefit in the acquisition phase.
The individual steps in detail
Professional database cleaning is based on four different tasks. The basis is the concrete definition of the Data quality requirements of all user groups that work with the data. Depending on the individual demands on the result, the following must be considered B2B data audit various criteria must be taken into account. What data should be collected and what requirements should it meet? In this phase, each user group defines, among other things, the scope, data depth, use and benefit of the required data. The project team compiles this information and creates the requirements catalogue.
The second step is about the Analysis of the currently available data sets against the background of the previously defined requirements. Checklists are therefore used to examine the extent to which the already existing data meet the defined quality requirements. Are the data complete, are there gaps and what about the uniformity of the data? As a result of this data analysis, all quality problems of the current data stock are recorded and prioritised. After the creation of a backup, the actual data analysis takes place. Implementation of the clean-up and enrichment. The following graphic shows an example of the database cleaning process:
Underground plan of the database clean-up.
Step by step to database maintenance: clean, enrich and monitor addresses.
The final step is to maintain the database quality achieved. Through regular Monitoring the status quo of the information can be maintained. The investment in time and money in monitoring is comparatively small in relation to the initial database cleansing, but necessary with approx. 1 million changes in German companies per year due to address changes, changes in managing directors or insolvencies/deletions.
Final additions to the database clean-up
In conclusion, it can be said that the targeted cleansing of your database offers your company numerous benefits. The availability of correct and relevant data records relieves the sales department and at the same time enables target-oriented acquisition. Your marketing campaigns and SEA activities (e.g. Match Audiences) focus on promising address potential and are therefore more efficient.
Both I and the other database experts from beDirect are at your side as a knowledgeable and experienced partner in this project. We take over the entire preparation and practical implementation of the data cleansing for you. Follow our how-to tips!
These and other topics are also discussed in our Webinar offer discussed: We regularly provide live information about our products and possibilities in the optimal handling of B2B addresses, master data and target group management.