Data, data, data. It’s the driving force behind the modern-day business, and one of the most valuable assets your company has. However, simply having the data is not enough – you also have to maintain it. That’s where data cleaning comes in. Whether you’re an international corporation with thousands of employees or a local business looking to grow, cleaning your database regularly is one of the most important steps you can take to boost the success of your marketing.
What Is Data Cleaning?
Simply put, data cleaning (also known as data cleansing, scrubbing or washing) is the process of removing or fixing inaccurate and irrelevant data from your records. This includes duplications, misspellings, incomplete information, or information that has not been formatted correctly. It standardizes and validates the data you have, enabling you to analyze it accurately and use it most efficiently. Data cleaning also enriches the data you have by completing fields that are missing.
How Does Data Cleaning Work?
Data cleaning assesses three main aspects of the information you hold: accuracy (is it correct?), validity (is it in the right format?), and completeness (is anything missing?). It can also involve comparing the data you hold to external databases. Cleaning should be done regularly, as customer information can easily become out-of-date in just a matter of months.
It is feasible to do this yourself, and there are tools and software out there to help. If it all sounds a little intimidating and time-consuming, however, don’t worry. Some companies can cleanse your data for you, and also provide insight on how to activate best and use your freshly washed information to achieve your specific business goals. As an example, check out leadlists.com.au/data-cleaning/ to see the kind of available services.
Why Is Data Cleaning Important?
There are many reasons why you should frequently be cleaning your data, but essentially it saves you both time and money. Bad data can cost your company big as a result of inefficient and ineffective marketing campaigns that use out-of-date email and postal addresses. Clean, accurate data means less employee time wasted on tasks such as correcting records, making your team more productive.
Data cleaning also helps you to achieve better results, as you can take advantage of having more accurate customer information. You might even discover some new business opportunities through the enrichment of your data, as it enables you to understand your customers better and personalize your marketing strategies. The process also helps ensure that you are compliant with any relevant legislation, all of which in turn leads to a better relationship with your customers.
In essence, data cleaning should be considered a key part of your business. After all, the insights and analysis that you get from your data can only be as good as the data itself. Higher quality data means better decision-making, more reliable information, and superior marketing campaigns and business strategies. So, if you’re wanting to keep your employees and customers happy, as well as your company efficient and effective, data cleaning is the way to go.