B2B Company Data

1. Conduct Your Research.

   Speaking to a sales rep, be sure to research the different options available to you. That way, you’ll enter your sales discussions informed with questions at the ready. Proper research will also help you reduce the data providers that don’t fit your needs, saving you time and effort.

When scoping out possible data providers, here are a few different factors to keep in mind:

Data source: Make sure the top data providers you decide all have a reputable means of collecting data. Although the source itself isn’t critical, making sure each provider collects data legally and responsibly is essential.

Reputation: Check popular review websites, social media platforms, and industry message boards to know what type of reputation each data provider has. Pay close attention to vendors who have proven success with companies similar to yours.

Industry coverage: Some B2B data providers only offer data sets within specific industries or verticals.  Be sure to inquire about each provider’s business coverage before signing a contract or invoice.

Cost:  If the data you’re buying is high-quality, then the price shouldn’t be a huge factor. However, it’s important to discover what your payment covers. Typically, there are three levels of data purchases: One-time use, multiple time use, and outright buying. Determine which of the vendors offer the type of purchase your business needs.

Conducting this research will give you insight into the options available and will prime you to have more informed discussions prior to making a purchase.

2. Define and Reach Your Business Goals.
Every company will have a unique set of goals and specifications when it comes to business data. And unfortunately, not every B2B data provider will be able to meet your particular needs. Because of this, it’s important to outline your must-haves ahead of time.
First, consider why you’re evaluating data providers in the first place. Are you looking for prospecting data? Have you noticed inconsistencies and inaccuracies in your database? Or, do you have a particular project in mind that you need the help of a data provider to tackle? 
No matter what your reason is, be sure to clearly articulate the different tasks you’re hoping to achieve. Here are a few other important factors to consider during this process:
Types of data: Think about the different types of data you and your team need access to. Some data providers only supply contact knowledge or firmographic data regarding companies and accounts. Others provide technographic data and demographic data. Get a clear understanding of the types of data each provider offers and determine whether or not they have what you need.
Data accuracy: B2B data decays quickly. Therefore, it’s important to ask vendors how often their data is updated, how they ensure accuracy, and whether or not they have a policy about handling inaccuracies.
Specific data points: If there are particular data points you’ll need, be sure to ask about them prior to signing a contract. For example, if you determine a person’s sales-readiness based on job title, it wouldn’t make sense to work with a data provider who doesn’t offer that particular data point.
3. Understand Each Provider’s Features.

Just as you took the time to assess your own requirements, it’s important to take the same amount of time to understand what each vendor offers. Although you won’t necessarily need access to each and every feature.



4. Consider Client Service.

As we noticed, some data providers have a client service policy that accounts for out-of-date or inaccurate data. And, some don’t offer anything when it comes to bad data. It’s important to know exactly what to expect in terms of client service before signing a contract with a vendor.


For this reason, we recommend that you inquire about the dataset you’re buying. Ask if it’s covered by any type of guarantee. And, ask how the company expects you to prove a record is a duplicate, undeliverable, or inaccurate. Agree in advance on how you’ll be compensated.




5. Request and Compare Data Samples.

Most B2B data providers offer some sort of free data sample. If your sales rep doesn’t offer one of these two options upfront, ask for a sample dataset.