“I just contacted this lead and my system is suggesting I connect again. Why am I seeing this lead again? Are there some duplicate leads in my system? How do I identify duplicate leads and clean up?”
These seem like valid questions from your sales team when the same leads keep getting assigned to them over and over again which wastes their time and energy.
Did you know that 40% of leads businesses receive daily are incomplete, duplicates, or invalid? For sure, duplicate leads are a big challenge faced by businesses on various levels that result in bad data. It can sometimes be data aggregation, human typing errors, or the same person using multiple IDs to create multiple accounts that result in duplicate leads. But whatever the reason, they are somehow killing your sales.
And it’s more serious and common than you would ever think! As lead duplication can waste your teams’ time, it can have a huge impact on how your marketing and sales teams make decisions.
So, let’s find out more about lead duplication, its dangers, and how you can prevent it.
With a sales CRM like Kylas, you can be accountable and transparent with your processes and track lead sources at multiple levels to avoid lead duplication.
What is Lead Duplication?
As the name suggests, lead duplication is the situation when a lead enters your system more than once. It’s not intentional in most cases but lead duplication often happens because of improper formatting, misspellings, incomplete records, lead entering data more than once, responding to different services or products, small variations, etc.
If you think that you are not affected because of this, you will have to rethink because experts believe that 10-30% of all sales leads are duplicates and over 92% of businesses get affected because of lead duplication.
Why Lead Duplication is Harmful to your Business?
Dealing with duplicate leads is quite common for businesses, regardless of their products, services, and sizes. Be it the customers who show interest in a particular brand or the pre-sales team that enters the same lead more than once into their system, lead duplication is quite prevalent.
It can become a hazard for many businesses and cost them a lot if not tackled properly. Here are a few dire consequences of duplicated leads that all businesses should know.
1. Incomplete or Confusing Information
When a prospect enters different information twice or more, how to determine which information is correct? At times, it becomes complex to extract the right information. In some cases, it can also happen that the marketing team and sales team may use data from different records for the same lead which can result in a lot of confusion.
It becomes dangerous for your business when the duplicate leads are in different stages of the sales funnel and you are sending them the wrong messages.
2. Loss of Productivity
When your sales rep has to connect with a lead that has two more duplicate records in your system, it can become quite frustrating for both parties to continue their conversations. Also, if a rep has to call the same lead more than once for the same thing, it’s nothing more than their time and productivity wastage. And what’s even worse is annoying your customer with multiple calls!
There is nothing worse than making your company look disorganized and uninformed. And who doesn’t know that lost productivity is synonymous with lost money?
3. Missed Opportunities
With duplicate data in your system, you will always find your client profile scattered and incomplete. When different details get stored under different folders, it becomes difficult to customize your selling pitch. As a result of this, you may miss several valuable opportunities that could have gotten you revenue and recognition.
When reps move forward with incomplete information and sell without the knowledge of customer pain points, it becomes difficult for them to recommend the right products and create custom offers.
4. Terrible Customer Service
Lead duplication becomes a major reason why your reps are not able to provide your customers with a fulfilling customer experience. When you have multiple levels of records to dig through while serving your customers, it will get difficult to resolve their issues. If you won’t able to find the right information at the time of your call with them, they will feel like they are just another lead for you.
It’s the sales rep’s job to offer a personalized experience and tell the customers that you know them, their business, and their needs. If they don’t do it, they will look unprofessional and won’t even be able to make a sale.
5. Wasted Marketing Budget
When there are several duplicate leads in your system, it can exhaust your marketing budget sooner than it would have otherwise. For instance, if you have to post a catalog to a prospect with 3 entries, you will send it to the same person thrice. This means you will incur huge print and postage costs. The same will happen with other marketing campaigns as well.
Because of numerous such entries in your database, you will never be able to find the true effectiveness of all your campaigns. Hence, it can hamper your decision-making to a great extent.
6. Damaged Brand Reputation
It’s obvious that not every prospect who enters your system would buy from you. If you keep calling and messaging them over and over again, it will make your sales team unprofessional and uninformed. This won’t just happen with the ones who are not interested. If you will contact an interested prospect several times for the same thing, even they would want to choose another brand.
This will harm your brand reputation. If you have serious lead duplication issues, this won’t happen to just a handful of customers. As per Gartner’s study, companies that annoy customers with the same materials multiple times have a 25% reduction in potential revenue gains.
7. Erroneous Business Reports
With duplicate data in your system, either your reports will look better or worse but not what they really are. For instance, if you try to predict your revenue on the basis of the current sales funnel and with duplicate leads in your system, your revenue will look more than you can actually achieve.
If you are using these figures to make major business decisions, you will be disappointed with what you get in the end. Data integrity is the only rationale for reliable reports.
How to Fix and Prevent Lead Duplication?
As soon as you find out that you have duplicate leads in your system, you must clean them up. You can try at your hands at the following procedures to eliminate duplicate leads from your system and prevent them.
1. Build Lead Deduplication Process
This is a popular blend of human insight, data processing, and algorithms to identify potential duplicates on the basis of the likelihood scores and common sense where two or more records look like a close match. This includes analyzing your database and identifying definite duplicate leads. As per your unique duplication issues, you can also set up certain rules to be implemented.
Probably, you need to find a mid-way that helps you keep your valuable customers while cleaning your database. This may also require you to manually scan and clean your data to find any anomalies or duplicates that are obvious to see.
2. Group or Organize Records
To make it easy for you to manage your data efficiently and navigate through your records, you will have to categorize your leads into subgroups. With an easy-to-understand grouping system, you will be able to avoid duplicate records to a great extent and identify them before they enter your system.
You will also have to think about how you would manage the duplicate records. Because you will have to spend bucks on sending emails to the same person twice or more times, you must decide which leads you to want to exclude from future campaigns or remove entirely from your database.
3. Set Up your CRM System Properly
If you are not getting your CRM system set up by a professional, you better follow all the instructions set forth by the developer when installing it on your own. In case you don’t follow the right procedure to set up your CRM system, you may face issues with the duplicity alerts working correctly. By cutting the corners, you may have to face issues while storing and managing your data.
4. Create Lead Duplication Prevention Algorithms and Alerts
Alerts and notifications work great when you want to stay updated on what is happening with your system. They help you identify red flags when something doesn’t happen as per the set parameters. To fix lead duplication issues, you can create alerts in your system. Your lead duplication detection algorithms should cross-match across programs, servers, and locations.
Build them in a way that they check the names, phone numbers, and email addresses properly so that whenever there is a match, you get an alert notifying you of the potential duplication.
5. Define a Clear Protocol for Importing Customer Data
Your sales team might be extracting data from different sources and servers. And because of this, things can become quite complicated. So, it would be great if you can define a clear protocol for procuring and entering a new consumer into your system and checking for duplicates prior to avoid any confusion.
Lead duplication is detrimental. It might take some time for you to find and remove duplicate leads from your system. But once you define a protocol for importing data and design algorithms to get alerts when some duplicate data is uploaded into the system, it will become easier for you to get rid of the duplicate data as soon as possible.
Kylas lets you keep an eye on all your leads so that you will know which ones are duplicates and eliminate them from your system for better productivity.