Address management is everything to do with collecting accurate addresses and keeping them up to date. It includes the initial checking and recording of addresses, for example on a website or over the phone, to the automated cleaning of a whole database of addresses. Each process can be performed faster and easier by using an address management product.
There are three key elements to an effective Address Management strategy:
The Royal Mail Postcode Address File (PAF®) provides the most comprehensive and accurate source of address data in the UK. Containing over 28 million addresses, PAF® is constantly updated by UK postmen and women delivering mail throughout the country. This ensures that the data accurately reflects the actual situation of each area. No other source of address information comes close to this level of first-hand knowledge, not to mention its continual updating process.
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It is important to capture address data correctly at the first point of contact. Address lookup web services, APIs and software can speed up the data collection process and ensure that the address captured is correct and free from errors and spelling mistakes. By capturing a postally correct address initially, it saves time in the long-run having to correct it later on.
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If addresses are entered into your system incorrectly, your database could be riddled with errors. There are also 1.2 million changes made to PAF® every year. Add to this the fact that your database could have duplicated records. In total this could result in multiple and incorrectly addressed mailings, costing you money and your reputation. Address cleaning software is available to go through your address list, correcting obvious errors and offering options for less obvious addresses, allowing manual correction by you.
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It's about verifying your addresses against a quality dataset at the point of collection and regularly cleaning them.