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I'm trying to find a way to track the leads that I get from different channels but which are for the same lead/contact. For instance, if I have a potential client contact us through our website, but then we're given the same lead through a partner, I want to be able to keep track of both lead sources and channels. I can hack a solution with custom fields, but I assumed that they was a best practice for this?

I've seen that there is functionality to merge leads but I understand this means information is lost from one of the leads.

Ideally I'd like to retain the information from both leads and have them attached to an account or to each other so that my sales team can clearly see there are two related leads and if the contact information is different they can try both.

I'd also like a notification when the second lead comes in. I realise that this is a complicated process involving many parts but I've been told by a Salesforce consultant that this isn't done, but I'm sure I'm not the only person with this issue.

Thanks, Andrew

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Generally it's a best practice to keep your database free of duplicates. I also understand your frustration about different pieces of data you are getting from many channels about physically one person. The challenge here is to keep data clean yet meaningful and complete.

First, you need to elaborate a complete data model for your leads/contacts and decide what info is necessary to capture. If you know, for instance, that a lead can come via partner with one phone number, and from Web with another, then better approach would be creating an additional field on the Lead object and keeping both phone numbers there in one lead record. You may also utilize Notes to capture any other data about your prospects.

Second, to prevent Duplicates I recommend reviewing the Duplicate Management module, and set up this feature in your org. With it you can prevent creation of duplicates and ask your sales reps update the existing record instead. Moreover, if you still want to have multiple leads for one person, this feature will show all duplicates when a user is viewing the record.

Regarding a notification when the second lead comes in, you clearly need to explore triggers for accomplish this task. As a light version you can look at the reports built on the Duplicate Record Items object to obtain up-to-date info about duplicates; you can also schedule this report if you wish.

To wrap up, with clean data/no duplicates first approach you would save your effort on managing piles of dirty data later.

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