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What is the best way in Salesforce to enter an individual person with no business entity with whom they are affiliated? For example, an individual donor? Should these individuals all belong to a fictitious Parent Company called “Our Sponsors”?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

If you put all of the individuals against a single parent account, you will hit account data skew once you get to 10,000 individuals, as detailed in the following blog post:

If the data volumes indicate that you will hit account data skew, there are typically two solutions to the B2C scenario - enable person accounts or create an account and contact record for each individual. Both of these approaches have their pros and cons.

There's a good overview of the three options in the answer to the following SFSE question:

Which B2C option to choose?

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The Nonprofit Starter Pack (NPSP) handles this in one of 2 ways. 1.) The bucket model which @bob mentioned and 2.) the individual model wherein each contact without an Account gets a "shadow" account added via code. Here are some helpful links: <-- requires sign-up but is free

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