One of the topics customers most frequently ask us about is how to import data into Unleashed. While it’s not a difficult task, it’s worth investing some time in preparing your data for import into Unleashed. Think of it this way – Unleashed and other cloud-based software providers speak the same language, but Excel is like olde English – there may be the odd thing that doesn’t make sense as the word isn’t commonly used. Here are some tips and tricks for successfully importing your data into Unleashed.
First, ensure the data you are importing into Unleashed is saved in a csv file format. We recommend using a program like Microsoft Excel or another spreadsheet editor to format your data (note that a program called “Numbers” has some issues formatting data in csv files – please contact our support team if you have any issues).
Then using our csv file templates in the application (click on any of the links in this help article for more information), format your data for import by doing the following:
- Fill in mandatory fields in the csv files that are marked with an asterisk (*).
- Make sure header columns and other data match.
Avoid doing the following as these may cause import issues:
- Renaming column headers when importing data.
- Adjusting or changing the cell formatting.
- Populating fields outside the columns marked in the template.
Once you have done this, your data should be ready for import. However, we recommend checking the following before commencing your data import.
- Ensure any addresses have an address name included.
- Check there are no invalid characters that could cause upload failure present in your data, i.e..commas, line breaks, percentage symbols, etc.
Also, make sure you don’t import too much data at once (try not to import more than 1000 rows at a time), as this can cause the page to timeout, and note that navigating away from the page while importing data will not interfere with the data import process.
Removing line breaks in a data file
A common roadblock customers face is when line breaks are present in their data.
Line breaks are most commonly found in address fields because addresses span multiple lines. If you receive an error like this, it usually indicates you have line breaks in your file.
These Customers could not be imported: Columns missing in row 2.
15 columns found, required 56.
There are two methods you can use to remove line breaks – try them in this order.
A simple find and replace. Within your spreadsheet editor if you press CTRL/CMD + F you should be able to enter in some text to search for and some text to replace what you searched for. In this case we want to search for line breaks and replace them with nothing or with a space.
In the “Find what:” box you can enter the line-break code, which is character number 10. To do this, press and hold the Alt key, and then enter the numbers 010 from the numeric part of the keyboard, causing a small dot to appear in the “Find what” box. You will see this in the screenshot below. Once you have chosen what to replace the line breaks with you can choose to replace all of them.
In the “Find what” box you can also use these characters:
r = CR (Carriage Return)
n = LF (Line Feed)
rn = CR + LF
Alternatively you can use a notepad editor like Notepad++ to open the file and do the find and replace mentioned above.
For more information on importing specific data sets into Unleashed check out the documentation in our help center, and if you can’t find the answer you are looking for there, get in touch with our support team.