Address Validation-US: New Operation Ensures Last Mile Delivery Accuracy

Your business gets a large order for one of its products, with a delivery address of “123 Main Street, New York, NY 12345.” But there is one problem: 123 Main Street is a large office building with hundreds of different suites, housing different firms. How do you make sure that you have a deliverable address?

In this article, we will discuss an exciting new operation we have added to our flagship DOTS Address Validation – US product, which will make it easy to detect these situations and improve your overall deliverability. This is particularly important in today’s economy, as we face a pandemic where more and more people are ordering products for shipment versus live shopping. Let’s look at how it works.

GetSecondaryNumbers: A “suite” new capability

When most people think of using Address Validation – US, they think of its main operation GetBestMatches (GBM)– a function that validates and corrects addresses, as well as returning important data about these addresses. However, there are other operations that can be called as well from this service: for example, FindAddressLines formats and validates messy address data. You can only call one operation at a time when using Address Validation.

A brand-new operation we have just added is GetSecondaryNumbers (GSN). Its function is to take an address, let you know if there are multiple units, apartments or suites at this address, and provide you with the range of unit numbers that exist at this location. It also provides you with a unit count for this address, which can be very useful for things such as resource planning, marketing, or time and cost estimates.

Here are two of the more common ways you can use this new operation:

As a failover for missing unit data: When you run our recommended GetBestMatch operation, it will flag that an address is either missing or has an incorrect apartment, suite, or unit number. For example, the example we gave above of 123 Main Street would flag this as missing the Unit#. Using business logic, you could fail over these cases to call the GetSecondaryNumbers operation, which would provide a list of the available units for that address.

Real-time address verification: If the address is being entered live on a web form, the GetSecondaryNumbers operation makes it possible to message the user to supply the missing data at the time of data entry, with sub-second response times: for example, you could issue a message such as “Did you mean 123 Main Street, Suite 1,2,3,4,5…?” Alternatively, you can flag these addresses for follow-up with your customer care team.

This latter use case is particularly important for deliveries, which in turn are growing rapidly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Moreover, a large part of the workforce is now using their home addresses for their business address, so the potential for errors and/or new addresses being added is greater.

Find out more about unit-level validation

You can learn more about this new GetSecondaryNumbers, including inputs, outputs and workflow details, at this link from our developers guide. This guide also contains detailed information about each of the other operations available with Address Validation – US.

This is a unique new capability designed to improve critical last-mile deliverability for multi-unit addresses, making Service Objects one of the only companies to provide unit data for addresses as a web service API lookup. As always, our knowledgeable technical team is fully staffed and ready to assist you with this or any other of our data quality products during this critical time.

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