How to create a file with the data to be imported
To begin, you can download a sample file to see how your data will need to be prepared for import. You can also start from an existing spreadsheet if you have one and use the downloaded sample file as a guide.
Click on the "Import" menu item for the entity whose data you want to import.
EXAMPLE: if you want to import Account records, then click on the Account menu. Click on the Import button.
Next click on the "Download Sample File" button:
The sample file is now ready to open. Click on the file.
Open the file in Excel. It can then be useful to click on "File" and "Save As" and rename this file so that you can use it for your import file.
NOTE: This is a only a sample of the default Pipeliner fields that you could have related to your Account records. If you have custom fields, make sure to add those to the file as new columns, and eliminate the columns that you’re not using.
Preparing your Data
As you build your data in this spreadsheet, check your work. Ensure there are no spaces before and after data in any field, that the data on one row is all related to the same one record, that only the first row contains the names of the fields.
Check your data for duplicate records before you import.
NOTE: Most data, particularly for Accounts and Contacts, is simple to work with and prepare as it’s mostly names, addresses, emails etc. If your data is a bit more complicated and contain many different types of fields, there are lots of tips at the end of this article to help with preparing data for import.
You don’t have to name the columns in your header row to match the names of the fields in Pipeliner but it’s good practice to do this and it makes mapping fields much easier!
You'll generally need one file for Accounts, a separate file for Contacts and further files for open Opportunities and/or Leads. Save each file in csv format when it's ready to import.
Which fields are mandatory?
Each entity has a very small number of system fields that are required in order to create records. For example, you won’t be able to import Contacts that don’t have both a First name and a Last Name or Opportunities that don’t have a Close Date.
Account: Account name, Sales Unit, Owner (note that you can just map the current, importing, user if your data doesn’t contain Sales Unit or Owner data.
Contact: Firstname, Last Name, Sales Unit, Owner (note that you can just map the current, importing, user if your data doesn’t contain Sales Unit or Owner data.
Opportunity: Opportunity Name, Opportunity Value (can be 0), Closing Date, Pipeline Step (must match one of your sales steps for Open Opportunities), Sales Unit, Owner (note that you can just map the current, importing, user if your data doesn’t contain Sales Unit or Owner data.
Lead: Lead Name, Sales Unit, Owner (note that you can just map the current, importing, user if your data doesn’t contain Sales Unit or Owner data.
NOTE: if, as part of your Pipeliner setup, you have made any additional default or custom fields mandatory, every record in your csv file will need to contain a value for those as well.
Which order to import records in
Depending on your data, you’ll import in the following order:
- Step 1 - Accounts
- Step 2 - Contacts — linked to the Accounts imported in step 1, based on an exact and unique match on Account name
- Step 3 - Opportunities — linked to the Accounts imported in step 1, based on an exact and unique match on Account name, and/or to the Contacts imported in step 2, based on an exact and unique match on Contact First name and Contact Last name.
- Leads — linked to the Accounts imported in step 1, based on an exact and unique match on Account name, and/or to the Contacts imported in step 2, based on an exact and unique match on Contact Firstname and Contact Lastname
Selecting your csv file
Importing is an easy step-by-step process using the Import Wizard. First you select your csv file and then you specify its properties, next you map the fields in your data to those in Pipeliner, then you preview the records to be imported (which allows you to check that your mappings are correct and identifies any invalid records) and, finally, you accept the records which completes the import.
NOTE: Importing cannot be undone, in addition, if you should accidentally import the records twice, then you will have duplicates that you will then need to identify and delete.
Click on the menu for the entity whose data you want to import. In this Example we will import Accounts. Click on the "Import" tool:
Next click on the “Click here to upload” link:
Click on the “Upload a document” button or drag and drop the CSV file here:
Locate and select the file. Click on "Open":
Since the CSV file will almost always have the first row as headings, modify the selection and check the box “Columns contain headers." You can generally leave the "Encoding," "Enclosure" and "Separator" fields ‘as is’ but if you know the exact properties of your csv file (for example if you saved it to csv UTF-8) you can select the corresponding format. If your file contains data to map to a multiselect checkbox field, select the separator you used when preparing your data. Click "Next":
Mapping Data to Pipeliner Fields
Now you will take the fields in your file which are located on the right and drag them to the corresponding field:
When you have completed mapping the fields that you need, check your work.
NOTE: the option to "Use current user" as the Owner and "Use default value" in Sales Unit (the current user’s default Sales Unit)
Checking the Import Preview
Pipeliner will let you know if a record is valid for import or not. While you can accept all of the records as is, is it useful to see if you have any invalid records.
Invalid records are highlighted in red. This is usually because the information in a field is not in the specified format. You can see any invalid records you may have by selecting the filter button in the upper right side of the import screen:
This will allow you to filter out valid or invalid records as seen below:
An example of an invalid field could be email addresses not being in the correct format.
Email fields should be in a “firstname.lastname@example.org” format or else the account will be invalid be highlighted in red as seen below:
If you select an invalid record, the panel on the right will allow you to see the problem and rectify it - e.g. to correct the email address or select a valid dropdown value:
If you have a column with information that you have put in a drop down field you would need to have all options available in the field’s properties in the admin sections:
If you are looking at a record and do not want to import it you can reject the record using the red "Reject" button at the bottom of the record details. This will remove that particular record from the import list:
If you find that you do not want to import a particular record, or a number of records, you can select one or more records and use the "Reject Selected" button to remove the records from the import list:
If you find that one of the columns you have mapped is in the wrong field. You can use the "Change Mapping" button at the top to change the field mappings:
This will bring up the field mapping window you saw previously:
If you have mapped more fields than the default display includes, then the import page may not show all fields at once.
To view more fields you can select the following button to show all field options:
Accepting Records and Finishing the Import
You now have a chance to select the records to be imported by clicking the check boxes on the left (or select all by clicking the first check box in the upper left). Click on the "Accept Selected" button to finish the import of those records:
NOTE: A single click on any one checkbox will allow you to modify the data before you import it.
If you have any records remaining in the view that you do not want to import OR there are so many invalid records that you need to cancel and modify your Pipeliner set up, click the close button:
Once you’ve accepted all the records, the import will complete and you can then check your Pipeliner system to view the newly imported Account Records:
More Tips on Data Preparation
NOTE: Pipeliner matches Contacts to Accounts or Opportunities to Accounts and/or Contacts based on an exact and unique match on Company and/or Contact name.
What does this mean in practice? For example, it means that when you are importing Account records you need to ensure that there are NO duplicate Account names. This can easily happen if your data contains branches or sites of the same company. The way that most customers deal with this is to add, for example, the State or City name to the Account name - e.g. “BP Petroleum - Dallas” and “BP Petroleum - Austin.” Don’t forget to make the same updates to your Contacts file so that the right Contacts will end up linked to “BP Petroleum - Dallas” vs “BP Petroleum - Austin.” If you just leave the name as “BP Petroleum” and have two Account records with the same name, Pipeliner will have no way of knowing which of the two Accounts, the Contacts should be linked to and you’ll have to sort it out manually post import.
If you’re importing data into a dropdown field in Pipeliner, you won’t be able to import records that have values in them that don’t match those you have in Pipeliner. For example, let’s say you’re importing Accounts and that your file contains a column called Industry. You’ll want to map this column to the Industry field that already exists as a default field in Pipeliner. Let’s say you have rows in your data that are companies that are in the Engineering industry - before you can import, you’ll need to check in Pipeliner that Engineering is already in the dropdown list for the Industry field. You can do this from the "Admin Module" in "Fields & Forms" or by checking in the app by clicking in the Industry field against any account record and looking for Engineering in the list. If it’s not there, you’ll need to add it from the "Admin Module" and publish your changes to apply it to the app before you start importing.
Email addresses need to follow the “email@example.com” format exactly — no spaces, must have an @ symbol, must have .com or .org etc.
If you’re importing into a multiselect dropdown field, you need to separate multiple values in your column using a separator and no spaces. The preferred separator is a pipe symbol, e.g. you have an Interest field with the following values set up in Pipeliner — Golf, Football, Sailing. To successfully import into this field, prepare your data in the following format: “Golf|Sailing”.
Dates are best formatted as yyyy-mm-dd. Numbers should not have thousand delimiters - e.g. use 10000 NOT 10,000. Currency values should not include the currency code - e.g. 10000.00 NOT $10,000.00.
All records in Pipeliner need to have a Sales Unit and an Owner. You can include these in your data - Sales Unit names have to match those you have created in the "Admin Module" in "Units" within the "Units, Users and Roles" section. Use the user’s email address to map to the "Owner" field (it is possible to map Firstname and Lastname if you know for sure that all your users have already logged in, but it’s easier and more reliable to use their email address). All owners have to be active Pipeliner users.
If you don’t include Owner and Sales Unit in your data, all records will be owned by the importing user and the Sales Unit will be set to the importing user’s default sales unit.
What if there’s a problem after the import is complete?
Rarely, but sometimes, despite all your data preparation and care, the imported data can be wrong - usually this is because your users identify a field they now want to be included that wasn’t in the original file! As you can’t append more information to records that have already been imported, you’ll need to delete and start again :(
As long as you’re based on a user role that allows you to delete, you can remove records by clicking on the menu - e.g. Contacts - selecting All in the List View by ticking in the checkbox in the top left and selecting the Delete button.
NOTE: If you don’t see the "Delete" button, it’s your user role that needs amending.
NOTE: you must be the record Owner in order to delete them. If you’re not, select All and then click on the Ownership button to make yourself the Owner and, once that’s complete, you will then be able to delete them.
NOTE: use the following order for deleting related records (once you’ve made sure you’re the Owner):
- Archive Leads and/or Opportunities — delete them from the Archive
- Delete Contacts
- Finally delete Accounts