Getting started with BatchBook typically involves getting the data you’ve collected in various other systems or spreadsheets in to the system so you can begin to do all of the wonderful things that being organized brings. Your data comes from many different places so we do our best to make the process as easy as we can.
Whether it is our custom import template, our screencasts, or even our experts who can help you with even the tiniest of details, we know that you can’t use BatchBook until this very important first step is done.
So our Customer Experience team got together and put together this list of our Top 5 Tips on how to make sure your import process is a success.
1) Use our import template. Having your data formatted properly is the most important step in the process. Each data type must be clearly labeled and all of your rows and columns must match up to make sure that BatchBook knows where to put your data. Don’t worry though – we really do make it easy if you let us.
Each account comes with its very own Import Template that is customized to hold all of your SuperTag Fields and custom data, it’s also in the proper .csv format that we need. It may seem easier to try to modify the file you exported from your old system, but trust us – failing to use the import template is the most common reason we see people asking for support to resolve import failures.
2) Import your companies and your individuals separately. While this isn’t required, it helps make sure that the data you are uploading gets applied to the proper records. We love how BatchBook lets you enter in company data and have it automatically appear at the employee or personnel level and with a little bit of planning you can do the same thing in your import.
To make sure that your company specific address and contact information is complete and tied to your company record you’ll want to have it appear as a unique line in your data file – without a person’s name. Keep any information that applies to the company itself like website, main address, and common phone numbers. This will create company records in your BatchBook account with all of the company data all ready and waiting to be pushed down to your other contacts.
After this step, you can then import your file of individuals. You’ll want to be sure that the company name is an exact match to what you have already entered and we’ll take care of matching them up automatically. You’ll also want to remove any information from those individual’s records that are duplicates of what you’ve already entered in for their company. Leave only information that is unique to that user like their personal email address, phone w/ extension, personal cell phone etc.
3) Do a small test import first. We try to make the process as simple as possible and you’ve done a lot of work to get everything lined up and in the right place. Before you go ahead and upload that whole file, grab a couple of company records and related individuals and start with just those folks. See how the import works, make sure that the data is in the right place. Did your SuperTags format properly? Did your Tags import correctly? It’s a lot easier to delete or change a few records, modify your data and try again than it is to have to undo a full import or correct thousands of records. Keep importing a few at a time until you know it is perfect – then let it loose.
4) Break up large imports in to smaller files. We recommend not uploading or importing more than 5000 records at a time. This keeps the file sizes manageable to avoid any issues with time-outs and keeps the actual import times to workable levels. It also lets you correct any issues with specific record import errors in smaller batches.
5) Watch your SuperTags. The import template will clearly identify which fields and columns should contain your SuperTag data but you’ll need to be sure that the data you put in there matches not only the field type you’ve created but also if you have entered in specific options or choices, that your import data matches that information exactly. Yes and Y are different. No and none are different. If your test imports are failing, this is the first place I would check.
Armed with this info you should be able to get started with nice clean organized data in your BatchBook account.
As always, check out the support area of our site for more information or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any help or have specific questions on how best to make this work for you.