6 Reasons Why Duplicates in Your CRM/Marketing Automation Platform May Cost You a Fortune

Warren Fowler

The logic behind an online business is relatively simple – you are trying to acquire as many leads as possible and then convert them into real customers. However, this process is everything but easy. Online sales can face all sorts of problems, with duplicates being one of its worst enemies.

Henry Staggers, a CRM specialist at Best Essays, recently noted: “Duplicates are multiple entries for the same person or organization in your marketing and CRM automation software. Most marketers don’t discover the duplicate problem before they breach the allowed database limit”.

The most efficient way to solve the problem is to dedupe datasets and go behind the limit line again, but it doesn’t save you from making a much bigger CRM damage. In this post, we will show you six reasons why duplicates in your CRM and marketing automation platform may cost you a fortune.

How Does It Happen?

Before we describe six consequences of lead duplicates, we need to explain the genesis of the problem. We will use our imaginary friend Jane as an example.

Jane Doe is representing the hypothetical company XYZ. Jane decided to visit your office at the local industry fair, so your staff scanned her ID and automatically added her email to the database. Jane showed a lot of interest in your portfolio, which is why the sales rep who had talked to Jane decided to do a post-fair background check.

He found Jane on LinkedIn and immediately added her to your database, not knowing that she is already there. Unfortunately, Jane is not using the same email address for LinkedIn and now you have a full-time duplicate in your CRM register.

In the meantime, Jane comes back home thrilled about your products or services. As the matter of fact, she is so excited about everything that she registers for your webinar. You might think that it couldn’t get better than this, but there is a catch – Jane signed up using her personal email. This way, you just got yourself three different leads (Jane 1, Jane 2, Jane 3) for one prospect only.

Many things can go wrong in such circumstances, but we will explain to you six most significant problems that appear as the direct result of duplicates in your software. Let’s check it out:

Inaccurate New Names Reporting

As a company, you are facing the issue of inaccurate new names reporting. Adding three Jane Doe leads instead of just one will give you a wrong impression about the sales potential. A lot of cases like this will completely change your planning and lead you to wrong business conclusions and estimations.

Inaccurate Pipeline and Revenue Attribution

Since it’s not possible to generate multiple pipeline and revenue opportunities through one lead alone, two out of three lead generation channels will end up looking inefficient. At the same time, we’ve seen that each one of these channels actually contributed to the final deal.

While Jane 1 helps sales reps to follow up the lead, Jane 2 maintains communication with them and seems interested enough to complete an entire consumer journey. At the same time, Jane 3 will take part in your webinar. Each one of these leads obviously helps the company to continue communication with Jane and provide her with additional lead-nurturing content.

But what happens now with your database? It could go two ways:

Sales agents will pay attention to the database during the background check and discover multiple entries for the same person. They will make necessary adjustments and solve the problem.
Sales agents won’t be too careful, so they will continue to treat Jane as the 3-faced lead.

In this case, your company will have a few more issues to handle.

Waste of Time and Effort for the Sales Teams

If they don’t notice duplicates, sales reps will waste a lot of time trying to convert ghost leads. It’s not a big deal if you have a couple of duplicates, but just try to imagine the dimensions of this problem if you have thousands of duplicates. Each ghost lead will take sales reps approximately 10 minutes, which in total becomes a huge issue.

Inconsistent Communication

Being a three-fold lead, Jane Doe is now a danger to the reputation of your company. How come? Well, at least two of your sales agents will be talking to Jane and trying to convert the lead. They are not aware of each other’s actions and they probably take a different sales approach.

This can be very annoying for the prospect because she discovers a lack of internal communication within your company. It could make Jane very suspicious and she might even think that your services are not as good as she believed. On the other hand, your sales team keeps working and you’ll have additional problems.


Since Jane 1, 2 and 3 are all credible leads to the company, your sales reps will be sending her multiple emails trying to seal the deal. They don’t know that Jane is receiving much more messages than necessary, but that won’t stop her from unsubscribing. Jane will probably talk to your sales staff and they will figure out part of the problem, but at least two of her email addresses will keep showing up in your system.

Privacy Laws/GDPR Compliance

Stronger rules on data protection mean people have more control over their personal data. However, duplicates can jeopardize personal data security and break the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This is another reason why you should eliminate duplicates from your CRM and marketing automation software.


Lead duplicates may cause problems with the CRM and marketing automation platform, but the consequences of multiple records for the same client can be much bigger than the software issue. If you want to keep the list of leads clean and precise, you have to eliminate duplicates.

Warren is a marketing enthusiast and a blogger at Best Essays, who loves music. If he doesn’t have a guitar in his hands, he’s probably embracing new technologies and marketing techniques online. You can meet him on Twitter and Facebook.