Glossary

NCOA® (NATIONAL CHANGE OF ADDRESS)

Definition:
"National Change of Address Database" (NCOALink®)is a service that provides customers with USPS® change of address information for individuals, families and businesses through a licensee of the data.

Ideal steps for maximizing the NCOALink® process:

  • Customer address data is cleansed and formatted to USPS® standards including ZIP + 4®
  • Data is matched against the NCOA® data from the USPS®
  • Each time an exact match is made, the new address information can be used to update the customer record

Because the process only provides new data when an exact match is found, cleaning a database before it is processed is an essential step in getting best results from the service. If a business has inaccurate addresses in its database, the company still pays to process those incorrect addresses even though they cannot be updated.

Address cleansing software changes addresses to the USPS® format, fixes incorrect ZIP Codes, resolves typos in street names, and uses fuzzy matching to find the most accurate address possible.

Related links:

Learn how you can update addresses.
Find out more about fuzzy address searching.