For marketing and sales organizations looking to improve their lead-to-customer conversion rates and overall revenue, collecting and maintaining high-quality CRM data could be the key to positive change, per results from a recent study [download page] by Validity. That’s especially true given that 4 in 10 (39%) of those surveyed either have no CRM data management process or an ineffective one.
So how are marketers doing overall? Here are some findings from the study.
CRM Data Quality is Very Important to Marketers, but Various Issues Hold Them Back
On top of the many benefits of CRM platforms themselves, organizations are in agreement that supplying these platforms with high-quality data is essential, with 92% of respondents rating it as important (31%) or very important (61%). Despite this, almost half (45%) of respondents consider their own CRM data to be of neutral (35%), poor (9%) or very poor (1%) quality. Indeed, just 8% of participants in the survey met Validity’s three criteria for high-quality data, namely that there is: a prioritization of CRM data quality among leadership; effective and ongoing CRM data governance; and that CRM data management is the full-time responsibility of a cross-functional team.
Some 4 in 10 (38%) respondents estimate that 60-79% of their data is complete and accurate, with a further 1 in 5 (22%) saying the same for 40-59% of their data. Just one-quarter (24%) estimate that 80%+ of their CRM data is complete and accurate.
Organizations are held back from being more confident in their CRM data by a number of data quality issues. In fact, some 95% of respondents reported experiencing data quality issues of some kind, with the most cited issue being missing or incomplete data (69%). Half (49%) of respondents reported issues with both duplicate data and incomplete data, and 4 in 10 (41%) struggle with expired data.
What’s more, while 90% of respondents are taking steps to improve CRM data quality, the most cited approach was to manually identify and correct data quality issues (63%). In many marketing teams, manual methods might not suffice to improve CRM data quality given the sheer volume of incoming data.
How Do Top Performers Benefit From Higher Quality CRM Data?
Based on the study’s conclusions, organizations should be confident that taking steps to improve CRM data quality will pay off. The majority of respondents see data as a competitive advantage, with more than 7 in 10 agreeing that it is the lifeblood of their company and a key growth driver.
When it comes to lead-to-customer conversion rates, the results indicate that high-quality data can make a difference. While only 35% of organizations overall are satisfied or very satisfied with their lead-to-customer conversion rates, 47% of those using the highest quality data feel the same. By contrast, among organizations with very poor, poor, or neutral quality data, just 15% are satisfied with their conversion rates and none are very satisfied.
Organizations with good or very good quality CRM data were also more likely than the rest to also report accurate sales forecasts and reports.
That being said, even organizations with the best quality data and the best intentions face negative impacts from any remaining bad data. Often these impacts are hard to measure, with 42% of organizations overall not knowing the percentage of revenue they lose as a result of poor quality CRM data.
However, with half (52%) of organizations reporting that between 1 and 5 of their business initiatives have not completed because of poor quality CRM data, it’s clear that this poses a barrier to achievement and revenue.
Read more insights in the full report here.
About the Data: Data is based on 276 qualified responses from executives at companies of various sizes.