Duplicate contacts in your CRM present a persistent challenge. They clutter the database and lead to inefficiencies in communication, sales, and marketing. Streamlining your business operations requires knowing how to merge duplicate HubSpot contacts, but before you do so, there are a few things to consider
Duplicates come from many sources; for example, a customer may inadvertently fill out multiple forms. The integration of two or more applications, the import of external data sources into HubSpot, and manual data entry can also result in duplicates. In short, duplicate contacts are easy to create, but can be trickier to get rid of.
Although HubSpot equips users with tools to merge duplicate contacts, these tools are not without limitations. Users often find themselves navigating through a labyrinth of data, trying to identify and rectify duplicates without compromising data integrity. Such a process takes a lot of time and errors are common. Often, companies opt for merging only a fraction of their total HubSpot duplicates and accepting the negative ramifications of the remaining duplicates.
But leaving duplicates unaddressed is a mistake that will affect many areas of your business. Duplicate contacts distort customer insights, lead to misdirected marketing efforts, and ultimately impact the bottom line. Efficient management of these duplicates is not just a matter of data hygiene, but a critical component of effective CRM practices.
The Business Impact of Duplicate HubSpot Contacts
Duplicate contacts in HubSpot can severely undermine a company's operational efficiency and marketing effectiveness.
These impacts manifest in several ways:
- Increased marketing costs: Duplicate data can inflate marketing budgets significantly. Sending multiple messages to the same contact due to duplicate entries can waste budgets.
- Lost productivity: Marketing teams waste considerable time sifting through and editing records to identify duplicates. This process can take days or weeks and still not guarantee a fully clean database.
- Personalization accuracy: Effective personalization, a cornerstone of modern marketing, relies on accurate data. Duplicate contacts lead to less targeted and less effective personalization, diluting marketing efforts and impacting customer engagement.
- Negative brand perceptions: Receiving multiple or inaccurate messages due to duplicate data harms customer perception, potentially increasing churn and reducing loyalty. This can have long-term detrimental effects on a brand's reputation.
- Lack of confidence: Doubts about data accuracy lead to less ambitious marketing campaigns where customer data plays a smaller role. This hesitancy can set a company behind its competitors in terms of innovation and customer engagement.
- Impact on sales teams: Sales teams rely on accurate data for effective communication with prospects. Duplicate data can lead to errors, wasted time, and decreased confidence among sales reps, affecting their productivity and satisfaction.
These diverse impacts highlight the critical need for businesses to manage and rectify duplicate data in their CRM systems, not only to safeguard operational efficiency but also to maintain competitive advantage and customer satisfaction.
How to Merge Duplicate Contacts in HubSpot
Hubspot offers numerous features that help companies identify, analyze, and merge potentially duplicate contacts in their database.
First, there is the standard deduplication feature. You can access it by navigating to Contacts > Contacts > Actions > Manage Duplicates.
There, you’ll be able to see all of the identified duplicates. Duplicates are identified by HubSpot using several matching fields—first name, last name, email address, IP country, phone number, zip code, and company name.
To merge records, you must first click the Review button. This brings up a pop-up window that allows you to compare the records side by side. You will see a message explaining what happens when you merge the contacts, and can also select the master record that you would like to keep following the merge.
After clicking the Merge button, the records will be merged. This merge cannot be easily undone.
While this feature provides users with a lot of control over which records are merged, it is a highly manual process that is not realistic for larger companies with thousands of duplicates.
HubSpot also offers automatic deduplication by email address and usertoken, but this process will only identify a small percentage of the total number of duplicates in your database.
But there is another option that gives you complete control over finding and resolving duplicates exactly the way you want to.
How Insycle Gives You Duplicate HubSpot Contact Merging Superpowers
Insycle’s Merge Duplicates module is an incredibly powerful tool for identifying and merging duplicates in HubSpot CRM. You can match duplicate contacts in HubSpot using any contact field as a matching field. Then, you can use Similar Match to catch more duplicates than you would only using Exact Match.
Additionally, you can instruct Insycle to ignore things like symbols, common terms (like LLC), or white space in your chosen matching field.
You can even match duplicates using related fields, such as comparing the phone number field to the mobile phone number field. This allows you to catch duplicates that otherwise would have flown under the radar.
Powerful Master Record and Data Retention Settings
With Insycle, you have complete control over the data that you retain when merging HubSpot duplicates. You can set rules for determining the post-merge master record.
You can also specify rules for how data is retained in individual fields when merging duplicate contacts in HubSpot. You can even use other fields as an indicator. For example, in the first rule below, we are keeping the email from the record that has the most recent deal close date.
Automate Merging HubSpot Contacts
With Insycle, you can then automate the template to run on a set schedule to ensure that your duplicate records are consistently identified and merged.
Further, you can bundle multiple templates into a Recipe and automate them to run in order, together. This allows you to identify and merge duplicate records in multiple ways, which ensures that you catch more duplicates than if you were just using HubSpot’s built-in features.
Then, you can inject those Recipes directly into HubSpot Workflows to work all that deduplicating magic immediately after a new contact is created.
By identifying and merging all your duplicate records continuously, you can almost completely eliminate all duplicates from your database.
How HubSpot Retains Data When Merging Duplicate Contacts
When merging two contact records, their data will be combined, and the resultant primary record will display this integrated information. The process generally favors the most recent data, but with some rules for specific fields:
- Email Addresses: The primary contact's email address remains the primary one, while the secondary contact's email is added as an alternative.
- Lifecycle Stage: The more advanced stage is preserved. For instance, if one contact is at the 'Lead' stage and the other is a 'Customer', the merged record will reflect the 'Customer' stage.
- Creation Date: The date from the older of the two contact records is retained.
- Conversions and Form Submissions: The total counts of conversions and unique form submissions from both contacts are aggregated. So, if one contact has three submissions and the other has two, the combined total will be five.
- Marketing Contact Status: In cases where marketing contacts are applicable, the status deemed more marketable will be selected. For example, a contact marked as 'Marketing' will take precedence over one marked as 'Non-marketing'.
- Analytics Data: This includes the total number of page views, which is the sum of page views from both contacts.
- Analytics - Original Source Type: The earliest source type is kept, except when there has been a manual update, in which case the updated value prevails.
- Email Information Properties: The primary contact's details, including opt-out preferences, remain unchanged.
- Legal Basis: The most recent legal basis information from both contacts is combined and updated in the primary record.
Insycle Is Your HubSpot Contact Merging Superhero
Insycle is a superhero in the world of HubSpot contact management, offering unparalleled powers to merge duplicate contacts. By enabling bulk merges, advanced data evaluation, and complete control over master records, Insycle streamlines the complex process of data deduplication.
But Insycle's capabilities extend beyond mere contact merging. As a comprehensive HubSpot data management system, Insycle offers holistic solutions for all aspects of data handling within HubSpot. This includes data cleaning, standardization, analysis, and the automation of data processes.
Insycle empowers businesses to maintain clean, organized, and efficient databases, enhancing their CRM strategies. If you are looking to elevate your HubSpot experience, we invite you to explore Insycle’s robust features and start a journey toward data management excellence.