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Excel at Importing your Products

When you set up shop in AspDotNetStorefront, there is a simple method of getting your products into the store that is familiar to many computer users: Microsoft Excel. Using this spreadsheet allows store admins to quickly setup and import products all in one place. While not every field can be set through the bulk import, the majority of attributes can be handled this way.

When using this time-saving tool, there are a few considerations to keep in mind when attempting this method of product entry:

1)      Backup your database prior to processing imports!

2)      If you have multiple locales in your storefront, you should not use the Excel Import as the localized data will cause duplicated Categories. You can work around this by xml encoding the data and wrap it in a CDATA tag (match the data in the database), but the WSI tool is your better option.

3)      When an import file is processed, the software looks at each entry and compares it to existing products in the storefront. If the SKU of a product in the import file matches an existing product, that existing product is updated with the information from the new file. If there is no SKU match, then a new product is created with that information. This requires that each product have a unique SKU if using this tool for product updating.

4)      Use the sample file (ExcelImport.xls) as a template, found in your web\ImportFileSamples\ folder.

5)      Read the notes at the top of the sample file! The top three rows are required to remain unaltered, and all items in RED are required fields.

6)      Everything to the left of column AJ is for the Product and everything to the right of column AJ is for the Product Variants.

7)      Remember Sections are called Departments in the storefront.

8)      If using ImageFilenameOverride, be sure the referenced images are in place in the appropriate folders. Reference these links in the User’s Guide for more about images:

  1. Bulk-uploading product photos
  2. Image Naming Conventions
  3. Image Resize Configuration

9)      When importing your Excel product file, be sure to use the Products > Import/Export > ‘Excel Product Import’ tool and not ‘Import Price List from Excel/XML’.  You know that you used the wrong tool if you receive the error message:

Conversion failed when converting the nvarchar value ‘ProductName’ to data type int.

10)  All fields must contain value data only. Make sure there are no formulas, references or comments.

11)  If you do not get the expected results and you are sure your Excel file is populated correctly, it may be due to invalid data (formulas, referenced cells, etc). If you have a comment on a cell, you will receive the following ‘File Uploaded Error’:

Exception=Index was out of range. Must be non-negative and less than the size of the collection. Parameter name: index

12)  Do not rename the Excel worksheet (must remain ‘Sheet1’), and do not save in a .xlsx format (retain .xls format).

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