Feb 28

Data Quality Tools and the Tiny Mistakes with Big Consequences

There are plenty of good reasons for using data quality tools to maintain a clean and well-ordered database.

Perhaps the most important reason of all is that not doing this could lead to small but crucial mistakes. These mistakes could have huge consequences further down the line.

The following are some of the mistakes that attention to detail and the right data quality tools can help you to avoid from now on.

Spelling Mistakes that Infuriate Customers

It may seem like a trivial matter when a customer has an extra “e” in their company name. Or maybe their surname has been spelled as “McDonald” instead of “MacDonald”. Yet, this is the kind of oversight that can infuriate customers enough for them to go elsewhere.

Even someone who doesn’t get easily upset by issues like this might find themselves wondering whether they can really trust a company that can’t even spell a simple name right. By paying attention to what is typed and regularly reviewing the database silly errors like this can be easily avoided.

Sending Out Letters or Emails to the Wrong Address

Another potential banana skin for your company comes in the form of sending out letters and emails to the wrong addresses. As well as being a waste of effort, this means that you could fail to inform your customers of some important details.

Maybe you have an old record for a customer with the wrong address. Then you have another that has the current details and you don’t know which one to use. This is why it is a great idea to use data matching software and an email verification tool to get your database as accurate as possible.

Duplicate Communications That Confuse

Another possible risk of having a clumsy and cluttered database is that you could be sending out duplicate letters or emails to your customers. As well as being a waste of effort, this can also confuse the client and cause them some worries.

The process of deduplication is something that can help you to avoid sending out duplicate communications. In this way, you will know for sure that each person is only on there once. You can therefore see their entire communication history in one place.

Wasting Time on Incorrect Data

While all of these errors might seem relatively unimportant on their own, just imagine the time that you would waste if you had a few hundred or a few thousand records with these problems on them.

From dialling incorrect numbers to dealing with customer complaints and fixing errors, a poorly maintained database can cause a huge amount of extra work. Take a minute to think about how you could put all of this time to better use in providing a better service and growing the business.

This is why data quality tools can be so essential in helping you to run a better and more efficient business from now on. Boost your data quality right now and you will find that it is one of the best moves that you ever make.

Feb 22

Infamous Data Fails and Security Breaches: How to Avoid Suffering One

Data fails and security breaches are a huge risk now for companies all over the world. If we want to see how big an impact they can have then we just need to look at some of the most infamous examples from recent years.

Kiddicare

A hugely embarrassing mistake by this online retailer led to real customer data being used to test out a new website in 2016. The issue came to light when some customers received strange text messages about online surveys.

The company had used up to 800,000 real names, addresses and contact details in a way that was highly damaging to their reputation. Thankfully, no credit card data was used but there is no doubt that a lot of customers were left upset by having their details used in this way.

TalkTalk

A huge problem hit TalkTalk at the end of 2015 when they had to try and work out how many of their customer records had been hacked in a cyber-attack. At first, it was believed that up to 4 million customers could have been affected, although the eventual confirmed figure was a lot lower.

This was one of several times that hackers had breached cyber security at TalkTalk in the course of a year. The publicity around this attack brought the issue of online data breaches to the attention of the public in general.

Yahoo

Currently, the biggest data fails in history belong to Yahoo. It was in 2016 that they disclosed two massive security breaches, although they had both happened a few years earlier.

Their 2013 problem affected a massive 1 billion user accounts, while a 2014 breach compromised around 500 million people. Apart from the numbers, the 2013 attack was also worse due to the fact that hackers got access to every piece of information relating to the users in question.

FriendFinder

While all customer data has to be protected and maintained, it is clear that some information is more sensitive than others. Normally we think about bank accounts and credit cards as being among the most important data to look after but the FriendFinder data fail showed us another side to this matter.

The dating site was attacked in 2016 and user details soon made it online. The problem was made worse by the fact that the majority of the site’s passwords were poorly protected with weak passwords.

How to Avoid Joining this List

As we have seen from this list, data fails and security breaches can have terrible effects for the company and for the client. Therefore, protecting the client data has to be one of the top priorities in any business.

A smart way to get started is by using data cleansing software to get a clean and easily readable database. This makes it easier to maintain and cuts out the risk of duplicate customers or out of data information.

After this, a strong cyber security policy is needed, with robust controls and passwords that can’t be easily cracked. Poor staff training can also lead to problems in this respect. It is vital that all members of staff understand the importance of the data they use and keep their PCs clean, as well as knowing their responsibilities.

Get started on keeping your customer data safe and under control by giving our data matching software a try.

 

Feb 16

How Data Cleansing Software Can Stop You from Losing Sales

You might already know that data cleansing software offers a smart way of making sure that your existing client base is kept well under control.

However, have you ever stopped to think that poor quality data could be losing you valuable new sales? If not, then now is the time to see what benefits you could gain from having cleaner and more relevant data on file.

Don’t Annoy Your Potential Clients

There are few things more likely to put off a new client than calling them by the wrong name or using the wrong contact details for them. How can you expect them to trust you with their business if you can’t even get the basics right?

Your leads database should be as up to date and under control as the database where you hold the details of your existing customers. This means carrying out a process of deduplication to ensure that you don’t have duplicates leads for the same person or contact details that are long out of date.

Of course, if you don’t use data cleansing software to keep your leads database well managed then you run the risk of simply never hearing back from the people you contact. In this way, you won’t even know who has received your offer and who hasn’t.

Don’t Forget Who Is Already a Client

How embarrassing would it be if you were to send out a proposal to an existing client that you didn’t realise already had an account with you? This could be especially disastrous if you offer them a better rate or improved service than they currently get.

This is an easy mistake to make when you have an unwieldy and confusing database. Maybe someone in your team set them up as a new client without removing or updating the lead details at the same time?

There are a number of reasons you could end up in this situation but using data cleansing software that you trust is the simple way to resolve it and feel totally in control of your data once again.

Don’t Make Them the Wrong Sort of Offer

There is every chance that you tailor your offers in order to appeal to each type of potential new client. After all, you are unlikely to treat a giant multi-national company in the exact same way as a small local firm.

This tailored approach is a clever way of looking for sales that could give you positive results if you get it right. On the other hand, what if you get it wrong and send out offers that aren’t a good fit for each prospective customer?

This is another case in which using good data cleansing software will help you to better understand the size, budget and needs of your contacts. If you feel that you can rely completely upon the data that you can see on screen then there is a much better chance of make a powerful sales pitch that gets results.

Don’t let potential new clients slip through your fingers. Turning them into valuable on-going customers can be as easy as looking after your data with the help of our range of software products.

 

 

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