Bad data is an expensive problem, costing companies around $600B a year. Bad data can mean incomplete records, outdated records, or duplicate records, but whatever form it comes in, it can have a detrimental impact on multiple departments from sales to marketing to customer success. Managing data and ensuring its quality could be a full-time job, but there are ways to simplify it. The right web form platform can act as a powerful tool in collecting quality data upfront and ensuring data cleanliness on an ongoing basis. The only trick is knowing which features to use, such as data validation, and how to implement them.
1. Use Validation Rules
Validation rules are a guide to your users to help them input data in web forms in the correct format. Some of those data validation formats include:
- Email (the value inputted must be an email)
- Limit the length of fields
- Required fields
- Require a number within a range
- Require a number in a certain format
2. Set up a Stay-in-Touch Schedule
Once you’ve gathered data from an individual, the work doesn’t stop there. People change positions, companies, and contact information. Stay-in-touch emails allow you to collaborate with your contacts and allow them to update their own data. This is what a basic stay-in-touch process looks like.
- You send an email to your contacts with a link to a web form.
- When it loads, the web form pulls in your contact’s information from your CRM.
- Your contact updates any information needed and hits submit.
- The data syncs back to your CRM, updating the contact record.
3. Enable reCAPTCHA
Thanks to Google, web form solutions can provide excellent security in the form of reCAPTCHA v2 (the “I’m not a robot” checkbox). Though it seems simple, reCAPTCHA checkboxes are actually insanely complicated mechanisms designed to analyze whether the person clicking them is human based on a wide range of information.
4. Avoid Duplicate Data
If you’re like most businesses, you have multiple forms that collect lead and customer data. It’s likely that your customers and leads will fill out more than one during their time interacting with you. With this being the case, it’s vitally important to have methods in place for avoiding duplicate data. Web form platforms like FormAssembly can accomplish this through a Salesforce integration that selectively creates or updates records based on what’s already in your CRM.
Maintaining high quality data is a never-ending journey, but having systems in place to automate data validation and other parts of the data management process can make the journey easier and provide you with a cleaner pool of data to use for business functions.
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