Global addresses. Sounds simple when you first hear it, right?
Ever been on holiday and tried to find somewhere, say a monument or a hotel and you can’t quite figure out what is the post code and what is the property number? Or even if there is a postcode at all! I hear you. It’s a recipe for getting lost (which is wonderful when you’re in Venice, take it from me but slightly more worrying when you’re in a notorious gangster town in Puerto Rico.)
It’s super simple for the UK, you simply ask for the postcode and the property name or number and boom, a list of (usually) accurate suggestions. But some other countries don’t have the high postal standards we are used to – some addresses aren’t even covered! And don’t forget that this all varies between countries too just to make it that bit more difficult.
So I think there’s a few key things here that you need to look for when looking at data management and validation strategies to ensure maximum accuracy:
- Make sure you know the type of data that you are receiving. Do you want premise level data, which has the highest level of accuracy as you gain the house name/ number, or company name with the address? Or are you happy with street level when you need to provide the house name or number in order to have a complete address.
- Frequent updates. Not so specific for global as an up to date database is a must-have for any company, but this means you can accommodate for new streets and buildings as well as companies moving locations.
- As with all services in life, certifications speak volumes. Some postal organisations in different countries offer a database certification for an address validation service provider, meaning that you can trust you are getting great coverage and accuracy levels in that country. However, there are only five organisations that offer a certification, so if your clients are based in one of these then pick a provider with these accreditations:
To address (no pun intended) the difficulty of different address structures, an autocomplete search might be more useful – such as PredictiveAddress. As the name suggests, it uses predictive search technology to autocomplete addresses. So for businesses that also operates outside the UK it is extremely handy as it covers international addresses. Benefits of using PredictiveAddress mean that human error is eliminated which is great as then your database will be accurate and without any typos – many of which you may not spot as they will be in different languages.
By using an accredited management company and PredictiveAddress, you can really enhance the quality of your international data and make the most out of it.