Your database: Why it's important to clean and maintain it

Written on the 6 November 2012 by Snap Marketing

A well-maintained database will help you keep your business communications, products and services relevant, valuable and timely.

What is a database?

A database is a bank of information that your business collects, usually online. This bank is populated when clients fill out a form, sign up or make purchases online. There are rules around the type of data collected and usually clients have to accept strict legal terms and conditions.

What information is contained in a database?

The type of information contained in a database depends on the business. It can be something as simple as an email address, or a number of information points including:

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Postal address
  • Email address
  • Mobile number

Why is this data collected?

The reasons are wide and varied. Some businesses need the data for account security purposes to check your identity when you log in to their website. Some businesses use data to find out more about their clients in order to communicate relevant messages by email, phone, letter or SMS.

What is cleaning a database and why is it important?

Cleaning means removing old, out of date or inaccurate data from your database. Peoples details change frequently, so your data can become invalid quickly. If they dont update their details you have stored in your database, you wont be able to communicate with them.

How to clean a database

  • Conduct a data audit: Establish a process for checking data regularly. Once every fortnight is probably optimal, although it depends on the size of your database.
  • Create a dedicated data resource: Make someone in your business responsible for the upkeep of your database. Get them to dedicate one day a month to checking and cleaning the information.
  • Invest in data-cleansing software: For larger databases, manual cleansing could be too inefficient. There are many programs available for purchase that will automate the cleansing process.

When databases are old and inaccurate, they can cost your business money and potentially customers. Ensure you have up-to-date information in order to make the most of your marketing spend and stay in communication with your clients.

Contact Snap to find out how we can help with your print, design and website needs.

 


Author: Snap Marketing

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