Merging Contacts will often become necessary the longer that you use any system that tracks Contacts and Clients. Especially after a data migration, you may find that you have multiple instances of the same person in your Contact List, and this can create a problem later as you try to use these Contacts in various Records, only to discover that you have 4 of the same person.
Fret not, enter the Contact Merge! The Contact Merge option can combine all of Contacts into one and give you complete control over which bits of info are kept and which are discarded, as long as you’re doing two at a time.
Let’s get started! First, choose the Contacts Entity on the left side, under the Matter Subheader.
Put a Checkmark in the Invisible Checkmark area on the left of ONLY two Contacts.
*NOTE* The Contact Merge CANNOT combine more than two at a time. So in the case of four duplicates, for example, you’d have to Merge duplicates 1 and 2, then merge that result with duplicate 3, and the result again with duplicate 4.
And once you’ve selected your duplicates, you’ll see Merge appear as an option at the top of the screen.
Below is the Merge box, and the most important choice that you have to make here is which pieces of data need to be copied and/or deleted, especially in the case of conflicting data. Choosing Master Record next to one of the Contacts will check all the bullets in that Contact to be the default data in the event of conflicting data. The field with the bullet next to it will decide what gets copied to the final, Merged Contact. Let’s go through an example:
If Contact A has data in a field and Contact B doesn’t have data in the same field, or vice-versa, then you’ll want to put a Check (bullet button) in the box next to the field with data so that it can copy it over when the Merge occurs. No conflict.
BUT if the same field in Contact A and Contact B both contain data, and that data is different, as shown below in the example of our Email Address, then you’ll need to decide which one is accurate and put the Check next to that one that is accurate in order to overwrite the bad data.
Once finished, click OK and let the Merge happen. Voila! Only one instance!
*VERY IMPORTANT NOTE* - Contact Merge CANNOT be undone, so be very deliberate and careful about which fields you choose to overwrite and which fields you choose to keep.