Free Service in Dynamics 365: Insights by InsideView

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Insights is a free service optionally embedded into Microsoft Dynamics 365. Insights gathers information from 40,000 public sources to help organizations gather information on potential customers.

Insights is also an excellent system of record for account information.

 Pros  Cons
  • Data is kept current automatically
  • Excellent source for standardized account information
  • Free
  • Biased to public, U.S. companies
  • Slows the page load on Account Records slightly
  • No longer connected to LinkedIn


Who It Is For

Insights is for B2B organizations whose relationship is with a company or for organizations that have a formal account management approach. Insights can provide valuable data on your main customer – the company. The extension is embedded in a different third-party service from InsideView, which takes the company or contact name in a CRM record and matches it to their 400 million-record database. InsideView is kept up to date with data from 40,000 public sources like:

  • Business sites
  • News sites
  • Social media
  • Contact databases

For both B2B and B2C organizations, a valuable use case for Insights is as a system of record for account or company data. Instead of having each sales person create a new account record manually in CRM with potentially different information, Insights can be used to populate the CRM record automatically. The sync function from Insights populates the majority of the account record from just the company name.

How to Activate Insights

Insights, powered by InsideView, is available from the Dynamics Marketplace and can be accessed by a user with administrator rights.

Insights is included at no additional charge with the following subscriptions in Canada and the United States:

  • Dynamics CRM Online Professional and Enterprise
  • Dynamics 365 Plan 1 and Plan 2
  • Dynamics 365 for Sales
  • Dynamics 365 for Customer Service
  • Dynamics 365 for Field Service
  • Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation

Configuration Steps (Figure 1)

  • Go to Settings > Dynamics Marketplace
  • Search for Insights in the marketplace and click Get it now

  • Agree to the terms and select the organization in CRM for the solution install (Figure 2).

  • Insights will be installed as a managed solution.
  • It is automatically added to the Contact and Account forms. Once the solution is installed, open or create an Account Record to verify.
  • Once installed, Insights is available by default in the right-hand column of Contact and Account records as a web resource.

How to Use It

The easiest way to start with Insights is to create a new Account record. Once saved, Insights will populate with details about the new company or ask you to select the correct record if the name of the company is ambiguous (e.g. BDO is more ambiguous than BDO Canada).

Sync Account Data

The first step is to update your new CRM account record with data from Insights. Click on the two curved arrows beneath the company name to copy the Insight data to CRM. Once updated, the new account record is created from the name alone. This is not only a time saver for your sales/service team, but it also provides a system of record for account data, which cuts down or eliminates duplicate records.

The data available through Insights is excellent for larger companies, especially if they are publicly traded or have a U.S. presence.

More Features

Insights is more than a system of record for account data, it also provides other useful information free of charge including:


A summary of recent news, key contacts and social feeds. The social feeds are only available when the service is connected to Facebook and/or Twitter.


Industry-specific information based on SI and NAICS industry codes. Click on view more … for some high-level industry trends and challenges (Figure 5).


A listing of contacts from the company with the ability to view contact details and automatically:

  • Add contact to Dynamics CRM as a contact
  • Add contact to Dynamics CRM as a lead
  • Add contact to a watch list

Family Tree

View the company’s relationship to other organizations in a hierarchical tree. It is very helpful with large, multi-national organizations.


Insights by InsideView is a valuable service that is available free with most U.S. and Canadian D365 subscriptions. The service enhances the information on companies, and to a lesser extent contacts, which is available automatically to sales and service team members. One of its biggest benefits may be as an external system of record for account record information.

With the most recent version, 4.0.1, the connector to LinkedIn is no longer available and this impacts the usefulness of Insights for contact records. Microsoft has already announced a combined LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Dynamics 365 for Sales package, which promises enhanced customer engagement.


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