How does HubSpot deduplicate contacts?

Last updated: December 29, 2016

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HubSpot deduplicates contacts on two levels, by usertoken (this is created by the HubSpot tracking code) first, then by email address.

  • Usertoken: we first look at the contact's usertoken to see if it should be merged with an existing contact. The usertoken is the cookie that HubSpot stores in the visitor's browser when they visit your page with HubSpot tracking code on it.
    • Example: if someone fills out a form on one web browser (let's say Google Chrome) then someone else fills out a form using that same browser on the same computer, the contacts will be merged together. The second form submission will overwrite the information on the first submission because they have the same usertoken (cookie) stored in their browser. (This will happen only if the second form submission email doesn't already exist in HubSpot - if the second form submission email address DOES already exist as a contact in HubSpot, that matching record will be updated with the new values from the form. However, the analytics data from the second form submission will attach to the first form submission's contact record.)
    • Learn how to prevent deduplication of form submissions based on cookies.
  • Email address: HubSpot will look for a matching email address. If a contact exists with the same email address as the one being added, the new contact information will be added to the existing contact record.
    • Example: if you import a list of contacts that includes email addresses already associated with existing contacts in HubSpot, the imported information will merge with the existing contact record. The imported property values will overwrite existing values.