Causeview How To: How-To Handle Duplicate Contacts

Different people do things in different ways which leads to duplication of data. This can cause problems down the line. The most common duplicate in a donor database is the same person being entered in twice (or more). Maintaining a regular duplicate management process is essential to maintaining your data integrity.

How does Causeview handle Duplicates?

There are two ways that you can create duplicates: 1) manual entry or 2) through an online donation or event registration form. Let’s explore each.

1) Manual entry

In most organizations a team of people responsible for entering data into the system. You often have both full-time employees and volunteers entering and updating data. After you have setup your user profiles, your staff will be able to create and edit records.

Causeview utilizes the native Contacts functionality (which we re-name individuals). In order to help reduce your risk of duplicates, we recommend you search the system (using the search bar at the top of the page) for the donor’s name before creating a new contact. For the best results, we recommend searching based on first name and last name, and/or email address.

2) Online entry

Causeview Actionforms are a great way to help automate the end-to-end process of fundraising and event campaigns. The forms are responsible for submitting donor payment information to your gateway and writing back donor information into Causeview. Our forms have the capability to check your database for existing contacts and update any contact they find with the information they provided on the form.

By default, your forms lookup on the email address. Email is the most common unique online identifier (you use your email to login to Facebook) and so we designed our forms use this lookup by default. However, during your implementation you have the ability to define additional parameters to lookup using. Below is a list of three common combinations of search criteria’s for our forms.

Example 1 (Default configuration):

  • Email

Example 2:

  • Email
  • Last Name

Example 3:

  • Email
  • Last Name
  • First Name

Consider which option works best for your organization. Depending on the type of contact information you keep (whether it’s just your donors or their kids), you might need to use a different search option. Your Client Success Manager can help you figure out what form search is the best fit for your organization.

Remember, keeping your duplicates in check is essential to reducing mailing costs, keeping donors happy (no spam) and keeping your organization running efficiently.


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Image Cred: Image 1, Sean MacEntee, flicker