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How do I import products with a CSV file?

To import products with a CSV ( comma separated values ) file you will need to insure a few things before proceeding. The first thing you will want to insure is that the CSV file is in the proper format. There are two parts to a CSV file.
  • Fields ( this would be the name of the data ).
  • Values ( the actual values or data ).
The only required field is Product Name and should be enclosed in double quotes ("").If any other fields are used then they should be seperated by commas (,).

The second thing that needs to be checked before importing products with a CSV file is to see it the file refers to or needs other files. If images are needed then they must be uploaded using FTP to product_images/import. If the files needed are downloadable products then the files need to be uploaded to product_downloads/import.

Once these steps are taken you then need to open up your shopping cart admin control panel. After you have logged in you will need to click the Product tab to get a drop down menu. You will then want to select Import Products. This will take you to a page that offers some final settings. I will now take you through the settings that you will face.

The first setting you will come upon is the Detect category names from CSV file. This will tell the shopping cart to attempt to locate the category names inside the CSV file if the it is checked. If this option is not checked then you will be presented with a drop down box that will allow you to choose the product category you want the imported products to go to.

The next option is Yes, override existing records checkbox. If this is checked then any products in the CSV file with the same name as a product in the store will be updated with the information contained in the CSV file. If this is not checked then it will not perform this operation.

You will now come upon the option to choose where to locate the CSV file at. The first one will be Upload a file from my computer. If this radio button is selected it will import a CSV file from you computer that you select by hitting the Browse button and selecting the file. If you choose the Use a file already on the server radio button then it will use the CSV file that has been uploaded to the admin/import folder.

The next option is the Yes, the file contains headers checkbox. If the first line of your CSV file contains header information then this should be checked. You will also want to make sure the headers are seperated with a field seperator which usually is the comma (,).

The second to last option is going to be the field seperator option. This will be a text box that will allow you to a character that has not been used any where else in the document except to seperate fields.

The last option is the field enclosure text box. This will be the character that encloses all fields in the CSV file.

Once you have went through all the necessary checks and options available you can now proceed to the next step. The next page will allow you to select what product names go with what fields if they can not be auto-detected. If everything went smoothly you should now be at the page where you are presented with the Import Products button. Click this button to begin the import. Once it has finished you will see a new message that says The product import was completed successfully.

You have successfully imported your products from a CSV file.

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