You can add or update product information from a spreadsheet as an efficient way to update your Inform product list
Note: The import process is not reversible. Changes will update instantly, so make sure your data is accurate and clean before importing. Technical support on this feature will be on a time charge basis.
To ensure a successful product import, you must set up your spreadsheet properly and review your data prior to importing as improper spreadsheet formatting can result in import errors. Keep the following tips in mind:
- Separate Columns: Each property of your product represents a single piece of data. Each data element must be in its own column on the spreadsheet.
- Exact Matches: To match on data, you must enter it on the spreadsheet exactly as you have it setup within Inform (case-sensitive).
- Code Matches: Data matches on Code fields, not Descriptions.
- Leading Zeros: When editing your spreadsheet be cautious about leading zeros. By default, Excel trims leading zeros when the column formatting is set to General. Consider changing your non-date fields to Text before making any changes or saving. (In Excel, right-click the column and select Format Cells. On the Number page, under Category, select Text.)
- Default Fields: Not all data fields are required. The Product Import page includes an Additional Fill-In area that enables you to fill in some information automatically.
- CSV Format: When you've completed your spreadsheet, save the file format as Comma Separated Value (.csv). Note that if you re-open a CSV file in Excel, it will convert the column format back to General
For example, if product is listed as
ABC123 PRY BAR, with a combined Product Number and Description, then you must enter the Description
PRY BAR into its own column if you want it to import separately.
For example, a Product Number of
ABC123 will not be updated if your spreadsheet specifies
For example, if a Product Line for Cleaning Supplies has a code of CLEAN, then you must specify
CLEAN in the Product Line column.
For example, if your spreadsheet is intended to update a single Product Line, you can select it from the Additional Fill-In instead of entering that Product Line on the spreadsheet.
- Go to File > Product > Product Import.
- Read the confirmation message, and then click OK.
- Click the folder icon by File Name, browse to the csv import file, and then click Open.
- If your spreadsheet does not contain column headers in the first row, then clear the Has Headers check box.
- Now map the data from your spreadsheet to product data. You can do this in one of two ways:
- Drop down the Mapped Column list under Import Mappings, and then choose the data from your spreadsheet you want to map to.
- Or click the Data tab, and then drag the column heading from the Import Data table to the Mapped Column cell in the Import Mappings table.
Continue this process until all spreadsheet fields are mapped.
- If you have data that is not on your spreadsheet, you can add it from the Additional Fill-In options.
- Typically a Product Import is based on the Manufacturer's Number for the individual product, which becomes the initial link between your products and the imported data file.
- When importing off Manufacturer's Number, consider including the Product Line in your import. Products that do not match on the Product Line will appear on the Exceptions report.
- If you need to edit spreadsheet data, click the Data tab in the lower left of the screen to view and edit this data without having to open Excel.
- Once you have mapped all the necessary fields, you can check the data to make sure it will import properly. Click Analyze. If the spreadsheet contains any errors or incorrect mappings, Inform ERP will display an Exceptions report. This report provides the row numbers and the failure reason, detailing why data may be skipped over during the import
- Once the Exceptions have been identified, click the Data tab to make corrections. This section will allow you to edit the spreadsheet data on-the-fly.
- Once all data is corrected you are now ready to Import. Click Import.
These defaults are useful when you wish to update a single piece of data (such as one specific Product Line or Customer Category).
Problems may arise when different manufacturers use the same number for different products, resulting in updates being posted to the wrong product.
You can eliminate this problem by using UPC Codes or the Product Number to Match On, though this data may not be readily available.
Optionally, check the Ignore MFG Cross-Link Errors to exclude these from the Exceptions report. If you don't see this option, maximize the Inform ERP application window.
Note that changes made on the Data tab will be used only for this import and will not be written back to the CSV file.
When import completes, a pop-up notification displays the results.
- The number of Records Updated and New Records Created represents the total number of successfully imported rows.
- The number of Records Skipped includes locked records and represents the total number of failed rows.
- An Exceptions report provides the row numbers and the failure reason, detailing why data was skipped during the import. Most commonly, skipped data rows are caused by bad data, such as non-exact matches or poor column formatting. If there are exceptions, you can correct them as described in step 10, and then import again.