Importing Data

How to import data from another system, bulk upload new inventory from a spreadsheet, mass update your data, and more

Jonathan Staab avatar
Written by Jonathan Staab
Updated over a week ago

ConsignCloud's Item Entry and Account Entry forms are designed to help you enter data quickly and prevent mistakes. However, ConsignCloud also includes a flexible data import tool that can make some common tasks faster and easier. Whether you're adding data to your account for the first time, changing a lot of records at once or adding new inventory, you should consider using the importer to save yourself some time.

Note that some bulk updates, like changing the Status of your items, can only be done in ConsignCloud using the Actions menu. If a column you'd like to update isn't included in the list of allowed columns above, you should look in the Actions menu to see if it's there instead.

There are a few places where data uploads are available: in Settings » Data and on the individual Account and Inventory tables. The process is similar no matter which you choose.

Preparing your upload

ConsignCloud accepts spreadsheets in the .xlsx format. Most modern spreadsheet programs will export into this format. If you don't have any spreadsheet programs installed on your computer, Google Sheets is an excellent free option you can try.

To get started, download an Accounts template, or an Inventory template. You can also use an export of your data as a starting point, but be aware that exports do contain a lot of extra data for analysis purposes that you can't change with imports. You can remove these columns from your spreadsheet yourself or use the Ignore Invalid Columns option on the import screen to avoid errors.

At the bottom of this article we have included a complete list of what fields are available to the importer, and how to format them to make sure they get accepted. When formatting your spreadsheet, make sure you convert any formulas into plain text using the directions in this article.

Uploading Your Data

Whether you're uploading data into a brand new account, uploading a new batch of data into an existing account, or updating records, the upload process is basically the same.

You can upload data at Menu » Settings » Data or in Actions » Upload Spreadsheet on various data tables in ConsignCloud. Using Settings » Data allows you to upload more than one spreadsheet at a time, which is helpful if you're uploading inventory and need to create some accounts first.

During an upload, ConsignCloud will look at either the Account Number or SKU of the rows in your spreadsheet and either update existing data or create new records following these rules:

  • If it can find a match in your store data and Modify existing records is checked, it will update the record.

  • If it doesn't find a match and Create new records is checked, it will create a brand new record.

ConsignCloud will show you an error message if you have new or matching records in your import and don't check the corresponding box.

Warning: it's possible to create a lot of duplicate data or permanently overwrite important data using exports. The Create new records and Modify existing records checkboxes on the imports screen are designed to help you avoid making mistakes.

Tips for Successful Imports

Getting started with imports can sometimes be a little challenging. See below for some tips that can help with getting started. If you get stuck, feel free to reach out to support for help!

  • If it's your first time using imports, set aside a few minutes of quiet time to work through the process, and start with only a small set of data to make it easier to fix import errors as they come up — 10-20 rows is enough to get a feel for how it all works.

  • When entering percentages, be sure to use a decimal between 0 and 1, not whole numbers. In most spreadsheet programs, if you format your data as a percentage, this will be taken care of automatically.

  • Spreadsheet programs like to auto-format numeric values, which can be a pain when using zero-padded SKUs and account numbers. To ensure ConsignCloud pulls your identifiers in as text, enter a single quote before typing in your number – this tells your spreadsheet program to format the cell as text. In most spreadsheet programs, you can also format an entire column as text.

  • When updating records, make sure the export you're working from is recent — otherwise, it's possible to accidentally revert changes made in the system since the export was created. This is particularly relevant to the Quantity field on items, which can change at any time during business hours as the result of a sale.

See below for the specifics on what fields are included in imports, and what additional rules need to be followed when processing a given import.

Account Fields

  • Number (required) — the unique identifier assigned in ConsignCloud. If the number already exists, ConsignCloud will update the account with the data in your upload. If the number doesn't exist, ConsignCloud will create a new account.

  • Email, First name, Last name, Company, Phone, Address Line 1, Address Line 2, City, State, and ZIP (optional) — if you want an account to receive automatic email updates, make sure to specify email address.

  • Inventory Type (required) options are Consignment, Buy Outright, and Retail. For more information on inventory type and how it's used in ConsignCloud, see our help article.

  • Default Split (required) — this field specifies the consignor's share of the split, so for example entering 40% would yield 60% of revenue for items sold to your store. If the account will only ever have Buy Outright or Retail items listed, you can enter 0%.

  • Terms (required)options are Donate and Return to Consignor. This field is used only for consignment items, but required for all accounts in case they ever consign an item.

  • Notifications (required) — determines whether or not an account will be notified when items are received into inventory, or consignment items are sold. Options are Yes and No.

  • Balance (optional) — a dollar amount. For new accounts, this field specifies the starting balance. If an account already exists, the balance will be adjusted to the amount provided.

  • Tags (optional) — a comma-separated list of tags. These can be anything useful to you for keeping track of extra information about your accounts.

  • Custom Fields (optional) — custom fields can be imported using the sames names you've configured for them in settings as the column header.

Item Fields

  • SKU (required)A unique number or string of text used to identify each item. If the SKU already exists, ConsignCloud will update the item with the data in your upload. If the SKU doesn't exist, ConsignCloud will create a new item.

  • Account (required for consignment items) — The account number of the person who owns the item. Make sure that the account already exists in the system with the exact number provided (watch out for spreadsheet auto-formatting that removes zero padding here), or else the item import will come up with an error message about a missing supplier.

  • Category (optional) — The exact name of the category. If there is no match, a new category will be created.

  • Shelf (optional) — The exact name of the shelf the item is to be assigned to. If there is no match, a new shelf will be created.

  • Surcharges (optional) A comma-separated list of exact surcharge names. Make sure to create any surcharges you'll be using first by visiting Menu » Settings » Surcharges.

  • Brand, Color, Size, Details, Description, Title (optional) — All are optional, but recommended for most stores. Custom fields are supported in imports as well.

  • Weight, Weight Unit (optional) — only available if you have an e-commerce integration enabled on your account.

  • Quantity (required) — Can be any number or blank. If left blank, the item will be considered untracked, and will always be active in your inventory no matter how many you sell. When changing quantity for an item using imports, Recount will automatically be chosen as the reason.

  • Tag Price or Split Price (required) — A dollar amount. Most stores should use Tag Price, which is the ConsignCloud default, but if you're not sure which one to use, take a look at which field is available on your item entry screen.

  • Inventory Type (required) — Options are Consignment, Buy Outright, and Retail.

  • Cost Per (required)A dollar amount. This field is used only for Buy Outright and Retail items. For consignment items, leave this field blank.

  • Split (required) — this field specifies the consignor's share of the split, so for example entering 40% would yield 60% of revenue for items sold to your store. If the item is Buy Outright or Retail you should enter 0.

  • Tax Exempt (required) — Options are Yes and No.

  • Terms (required) — Options are Donate and Return to Consignor. If the item is not on consignment, you should enter Donate.

  • Expires, Schedule Start (optional) — a date, affecting how policy is automatically applied to inventory, or whether an item is marked as expired.

  • Tags (optional) — a comma-separated list of tags for custom tracking and filtering of inventory.

  • List on Shopify (optional) — if you are using our Shopify integration, turn this on to automatically synchronize your inventory with your online store.

  • Custom Fields (optional) — custom fields can be imported using the sames names you've configured for them in settings as the column header.

Note that if you are changing the Quantity on an existing item, you'll need to provide a Quantity Change Reason as a separate column, to tell ConsignCloud what the item's new Status is. When increasing quantity, valid reasons are stocked, and recounted. When decreasing quantity, valid reasons are recounted, lost, damaged, donated, stolen, to be returned, and returned to consignor.

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