Merging Duplicate Records | Online Help - Zoho CRM

Merging Duplicate Records

When you work with a significant volume of data, it gets quite challenging to keep your database free from duplicates. As the avenues to create records in CRM increase, the chances of duplicate entries increase as well. For example, the same lead may be created via import as well as via APIs. To help you manage a clean set of data, Zoho CRM offers both proactive and reactive solutions.

  • Arrest duplicates before they can be created
    By marking a certain field as a "unique field," you can stop the creation of a duplicate record. This is a proactive way to maintain a clean database. For example, if you have marked the phone number field as a unique field in the Leads module, CRM will alert you if you create a second lead with the same phone number as an existing lead.
    See also: Unique fields
  • Merge duplicate records
    Despite creating unique fields and double checking data, if you still think there could be duplicate records in your CRM, you can use Zoho CRM's de-duplication tools to merge them. They are as follows:
Find & Merge Duplicate Records
De-duplicate Records

When to use:
It is ideal to use this feature if you are specifically looking for duplicates of a particular record.

Example: You know that a lead name "David Smith" has been duplicated and you wish to find and merge those duplicate leads.

When to use:
It is ideal to use this feature when you are not clear if there are duplicates and you want CRM to run a duplication check based on certain unique fields.

Example: You run a duplication check on the Leads module based on the Email field.

How it works:

Go to the specific record's Detail page and click the Find & Merge Duplicates option.

This will fetch the duplicate entries for that record.



How it works:

You need not go to a specific record's page. Simply click the De-duplicate tool from the module's list view and select the fields based on which the search must be made.

Example: If you choose the Email and Company fields, CRM will search for all records in which the Email and Company field values are the same.

You can run a check based on a maximum of three fields at a time.

Once the list of duplicate records has been displayed, you can manually select and merge the records from the search results. CRM does not automatically merge the duplicates

You can merge a maximum of three records at a time.

CRM automatically merges duplicate entries if they are exact copies of each other.

In case of conflict*, you must manually resolve the conflict to instruct CRM on which records should be taken as the master record and merge them.

(*)Conflict Example:
Assume there are two leads with the same names, company, but with different phone numbers. In this case, there the problem of conflicting phone numbers must be resolved manually.
If there are no such conflicts and all fields match, CRM merges the records automatically.

Find & Merge Duplicate Records

If you are looking to merge the duplicate entries of specific records, Find & Merge Duplicates is the ideal tool for you. Simply go to the Detail page of the specific record and deploy this tool to fetch its duplicates.

The Find & Merge Duplicates tool also allows you to enter further criteria to search for duplicates. There are six fields in which you can specify the criteria in each module. Once the duplicates have been found, you can merge them manually.

This tool is available only in the Leads, Accounts, Contacts, Deals, Vendors, and custom modules and you can merge maximum three records at a time.

Permission Required
Users with the Find and Merge [Module permissions > Others] permission in their profile can access this feature.

To find and merge duplicate records

  1. Click the [Module] tab (e.g., Leads, Accounts, Contacts, and so on).
  2. In the [Module] Home page, click the required record.
    (Module refers to the tabs.)
  3. In the Record Details page, click the More icon (...) and select Find & Merge Duplicates.
  4. In the  Find and Merge Duplicate for [Module] page, do the following:
    • In the Search Criteria section, you will find an initial criteria made up of unique fields and a few standard fields. You can modify this criteria by adding and removing fields as needed.
      You can also decide if you want to detect duplicates based on whether the record meets all of the specified criteria or any of the specified criteria.
    • Click Search.
    • In the Matching Records section, select at least two records to be merged.
    • Click Next.
  5. In the Merge [records] page, select the record that you want to maintain as the Master Record.
    You can click Select All, if you wish to take all the master record values as final and merge the duplicates.
    If not, click the radio buttons near the corresponding fields of other records to instruct CRM on which field values should be considered "final".
    The values thus selected appear under the Master Record column. You can merge a maximum of three records at a time. 
  6. Click Merge.
  • The record(s) merged to the master record will be deleted permanently and the action cannot be reverted.
  • In the Deals module, the option to find and merge records will only consider open deals ie. deals which have not been closed (won or lost). When you merge open deals, please note the following:
    • Closing data, Probability, and Expected revenue fields will be populated with values from the master record. You will not be able to choose values from other records for these fields.
    • If multiple pipelines are enabled, you can select the pipeline from one of the records but not the stage. The stage field will be populated with the value present in the record whose pipeline is chosen.
    • The stage history of duplicate records will not be transferred to the merged record.
  • Once the records have been merged into the master record, the created time field and the created by field will be populated with the corresponding values found in the oldest record amongst the records being merged.
  • The attachments, notes, and activities will also be transferred to the master record.
  • Activities ownership change: The owner of the master record will be the owner of all the activities that have been transferred to the master record.

  • Related records ownership change
    • After merging contact records, related deals will be transferred to the master contact record. The owner of the master contact record will be the owner of the related deals.
    • After merging account records, related records (contacts and deals) will be transferred to the master account record. The owner of the master account record will be the owner of the related records.
  • Find and merge lets you merge duplicate records into a single record and delete the duplicates. Consider the record retained as the master record and the deleted record as the duplicate record. Automation actions that are triggered on Edit will be executed when the master record is updated and automation actions that are triggered on Delete will be executed when the duplicate record is deleted. For instance, if you have a workflow rule that sends an email alert when a record is deleted then this workflow rule will be triggered when a duplicate record is deleted. This is applicable only for Workflow rules, Blueprint, CommandCenter, Approval process and scoring rules and not applicable for Review process.
  • Scheduler flow: If find merge is performed on records that have more than 1000 records in their related lists, then the merge action will be performed in scheduler. The records will remain locked until the action is completed, to disallow users from editing the records. You will be notified when the merge is completed.

  • Edit or delete triggers do not function when records are auto-merged. These triggers will work if records are merged manually. 

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