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Calculating ROI – The Cost of Quality

TL;DR: The chapter investigates the impact of data quality on business performance, discussing the 1-10-100 rule, which highlights the increasing cost of rectifying data issues over time. It explores the costs associated with poor data quality in customer service, revealing that investing in better customer experience can lead to significant revenue growth. This chapter provides a real-world example using an ROI calculator to demonstrate how addressing duplicate records can result in substantial cost savings.

Calculating ROI The Cost of Quality

As we move towards the closing chapters of this e-guide, one thing that’s hopefully become clear is that data quality can have a substantial impact on business performance. The effects of poor data quality can be felt through various departments of an organization, leading to wasted time, wasted resources, and more.

The aim in the chapter is to reveal tangible and objective information about how prioritizing data quality can lead to reduced costs for your business. As they say, “show me the money”. And rightfully so. After all, if something isn’t saving your business money or time – what’s the value? Clean data isn’t just something we strive for just to look nice, or brag about on social media – clean data literally saves time and money in ways which can be easily demonstrated.

The 1-10-100 Rule


A widely cited rule in the realm of data management is 1-10-100 rule. Can you guess what these figures refer to? Well, the theory posits that it costs $1 per record to prevent inadequate data quality. It costs $10 per record cost for cleaning and deduplication later. Lastly, if you do nothing at all, it costs about $100 per record to rectify it later. The essential lesson here is clear; the longer one neglects data quality, the more exorbitant the cost to rectify it becomes.

As we know, besides monetary implications, poor data quality also brings about others costs beneath the surface that are not immediately tangible, such as lost time on calls to incorrect phone numbers. Or think about the pivotal role data plays in marketing campaigns, sales intelligence, goal forecasting, and customer experience metrics. While the impact of a bounced email or a duplicate record may initially appear minor, the cumulative effects can snowball over time, grow in magnitude and significantly harm a business.

The Cost of the Customer

Nothing beats a loyal, paying customer. You’ve done the hard work to win them over to your service or product; they’re happy, you’re happy – everyone wins! When customers are kept happy, they’re more likely to keep using a service or product. There’s nothing too surprising about that. But, can we put some concrete figures on how investing in customer service can impact a business? Well, we can take a look at a study taken by Temkin Group. They discovered that companies generating $1 billion annually can anticipate an average additional revenue of $700 million within three years of investing in better customer experience. What’s also interesting is that in the case of Software as a Service (SaaS) companies, this figure can increase to reach $1 billion – almost a doubling of revenue withing 3 years! Just from investing in better customer service!

Well, okay, that sounds good, where does this surge in revenue originate? To start with, studies show that a positive customer experience prompts increased spending from your customers. To put a figure on that number, data shows that 86% of buyers are willing to pay a premium for a better customer experience. Studies from PWC indicate that the more substantial the purchase, the greater the willingness to pay for better customer service.

How much more are customers willing to spend on better customer service? Figures reveal that customers are open to paying a premium of up to 13% (and in some cases as high as 18%) for goods or services solely based on the receipt of an outstanding customer experience. Additionally, this can also influence spontaneous purchases, as 49% of buyers making impulsive buying decisions do so after encountering a personalized experience.

Naturally, a great customer experience involves an effort from many areas in an organization – but a crucial part of any great customer experience is personalization, which involves a careful and meticulous handling of their information. When you get a customer's name wrong or send them adverts for a product they’ve already bought - you can bet there’s a high chance that they’ll take their business elsewhere in future. The moral here is to treat your customers like gold, because they will reward you back!

The Plauti ROI

At Plauti, we’ve created our own ROI calculator using various industry benchmarks and standards. This ROI calculator helps us put a value on very specific aspects of data quality, such as how duplicates or lack of validation and verification can affect your bottom line. Let’s examine some figures from this calculator.

In this calculation, we’re looking at how duplicate records are “duping” your organization out of hard-earned money. To plug our data into our calculator, we first need to make some general assumptions, such as, “what percentage of my records are duplicates”? There are numerous studies on this, and the range is anywhere between 20% of records to as much as 50% of records. Generally speaking, the industry benchmark suggests that organizations have between 10% - 30% of duplicates in their data. Using this figure, let’s assume that 20% of duplicates currently exist in your data.

Okay, now let’s say your Salesforce org contains 100,000 records. If 20% of those records are duplicates, that’s a total of 20,000 duplicate records. To address this issue using Duplicate Check, we’ve selected the premium bundle of DC (for 100K+ records) for 12 months. As of time of writing, that is $231 / month for 12 months, which comes to a total of $2,772. Given that fixing each duplicate at a later stage could cost $10 per record, doing nothing could later cost $200,000. Using Plauti Duplicate Check for doing a mass cleanup and prevention of future duplicates at a cost of $2,772 could potentially mean saving $197,228.00!

To get a better understanding of how much money duplicate management can save you, look at this table:

Comparison Tables cost

These figures look astounding – and they are! But just remember, this is the total damage you can mitigate by implementing sound deduplication practices in your organization. As we’ve stressed, duplicate information, and poor data quality in general, has a knock-on effect that includes spending more on storage space, wasted time, unhappy customers and more.

At Plauti, our findings suggest that more than 45% of all new records entered into CRMs are duplicate records. This finding is the result of analyzing more than 12 billion Salesforce records within a one-year period by Plauti Data Management.

If there’s one lesson we can take from this chapter it would be that procrastinating on data cleaning means costs add up. The sooner a company puts a sound data strategy in place, the sooner they can reap the benefits and avoid the bludgeoning costs that accumulate over time.

Are you interested in a deeper understanding of the costs of bad data? Reach out to a data professional from Plauti and we can guide you through our ROI calculator with your specific needs in mind. We can also perform other calculations, such as time savings on Salesforce development, marketing campaigns, and more. Get in touch with us today at

As we transition into our final chapter, we aim to equip you with practical knowledge and tools. In the landscape of Salesforce, there exists a wealth of communities where professionals gather to share insights, troubleshoot challenges, and stay ahead of industry trends. These communities serve as a valuable resource oasis, offering a wealth of knowledge to those seeking to enhance their Salesforce expertise.

So, stick around, because we'll present 15 indispensable Salesforce communities! These hubs are not just places to gather information but thriving ecosystems where collaboration and shared experiences flourish. Whether you're a seasoned Salesforce veteran or just beginning your journey, these communities provide a platform to connect with like-minded individuals, access expert advice, and stay informed about the latest developments in the Salesforce realm.

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