Are you currently moving your business to a new database or thinking about it? If so, you will hear the phrase data conversion quite a lot. Data is king and data-driven marketing saves time and money. ApostleTech has helped many homebuilder, construction, and financial service companies migrate data effectively, and efficiently. In this blog we’ll explain what data conversion is, the dos and don’ts of data conversion and we’ll briefly discuss the importance of data integration.
In today’s digital era, more and more data is being collected. As a result, it is inevitable that data conversion is a task that many companies will need. By definition, data conversion is the process of converting data that is stored in one file format into another file format of a different structure. By converting and restricting your data into a new format or database you are often met with a new perspective, and it is through this process that you gain a better understanding of the existing data. While it can be a labor intensive undertaking, when you have the right partner to take you through the process and train your team on capturing and managing more accurate customer information, your company is in a better position for generating sales.
Think of data conversion as spring cleaning i.e., you’ll want to clean it before you convert it. Check for duplicate information in your database. Be diligent and use this opportunity to declutter. Take the time to weed out bad email addresses, physical addresses etc. Simply put, if data that was considered important five years ago is no longer relevant or up to date, now is a great time to clean it up and clear it out. As a rule, don’t convert old data to a new system. Typically, the data that is considered important for conversion includes up-to-date customer names (persons and companies), contact info, demographic data and critical participation data. Beyond that, companies may need to review and analyze other data before converting it. Most importantly, you want to avoid entering bad data into a new database. Starting fresh with accurate information will help instill trust of the new system and help the team see its benefits.
However, you should keep legacy data available as a reference. ApostleTech recommends limiting access to key members of your team; this prevents the team from using the legacy system as a shadow database.
For entries less than 100, use manual data entry. It’s typically easier to reenter this data after the new database is set up, rather than to convert the data into the new system using a script. However, if you have more than 1,000 entries, or a subset of data, it’s less painful and makes more sense to write a conversion script.
Data conversion can be complex, that’s why it’s best to work with a team of professionals that have firsthand experience. At ApostleTech, we know the value a CRM database provides, and we know that your customer matters the most, because ours do too.
Conversion is just the beginning; data integration is the fun part. Integrating data permits companies access to update information in real-time. A business with a strong data strategy is able to make more informed decisions. If you find that your business is at a crossroads, it’s time to take stock. Begin by looking at the data you’ve got, understand what converting it means and take the next step in investing in integration software.
If you are interested in learning how ApostleTech’s development team can help you convert your data and gain better insights of your customer base, while realizing your business objective, get in touch with us today.