Address data quality is at the heart of all business operations. Inaccurate addresses can cost businesses anywhere between a few cents to many dollars per customer interaction. Undelivered products or information could result in dissatisfied or even lost customers, a cost that is far greater than the fee to implement an automated address check. Here, a list of the top 10 tips to select the right address data quality provider.
1. Choose an Experienced Provider
There are many address data quality vendors on the market, make sure you select an experienced partner with specialized knowhow. Verify how many years the supplier has been in the market and if he has always specialized on address data quality.
2. Postal Certifications
Postal certifications are an absolute necessity if you plan to post bulk mail at discounted rates within specific countries, such as the U.S., Canada, and France. Ask your supplier if his software is officially certified.
3. Check the Quality of Reference Data
Check whether the reference data is detailed and frequently updated. A monthly update of the reference databases is industry standard.
4. Number of Countries Supported?
If your company requires international address verification, then you should look for a partner who supports all countries needed for your business operations. Working with more than one provider to cover several countries will increase costs and manpower.
5. Ask for a Free Test Application
Testing the address quality solution gives you critical insights and helps you make the right decision for your business needs. Reputable suppliers offer test versions of their software without any additional costs.
6. 360° Support
Especially for larger international businesses, it can be critical to get support day and night. Make sure you select a supplier offering 24/7 support.
7. Market Analysis
Every year, market analysts publish studies of data quality tools. This provides you with independent information about the leading suppliers of data quality solutions.
8. Reference Customers
What reference customers and success stories can you find on the provider’s website? Satisfied customers within different industries and countries are an indication of a trustworthy vendor.
9. Geocoding of Addresses
Many vendors offer geocode enrichment in addition to address validation. Check the degree of detail of the reference data (e.g., locality level or building number level) to make sure that geocoding results are accurate. Update frequency is also relevant.
10. Look for a Stable Partner
Check if your partner has a solid financial background or if he is likely to be acquired soon. In case of a new acquisition, you might be forced to change your supplier.