Import Records | Online Help - Bigin by Zoho CRM

Import Records

Importing records is an essential data administration task. In Bigin, this important action can be performed without much hassle and complexity. Currently, you can import records to the Companies, Contacts, Pipelines, and Products modules. You can also import tasks and notes by associating them with their parent records.

Import Checklist 

Before you begin importing, we recommend you go through the following checklist:

Profile permission

Ensure you have the Import permission enabled for your profile. If you do not have this option, the Import option will not be available in your account.

Import file format 

The import file must be in one of the following formats and the attachments and the data must be kept separate:
  1. Excel (XLS, XLSX)
  2. Comma Separated Value (CSV)
  3. Business Card or vCard Format (VCF)

Allowed values

  1. The data that is to be imported must not be enclosed inside "<script> </script>". 
  2. The data must match the field type, for example, a Number type field should contain only number values. If string values are added to a Number type field then that field value will not be imported.  

Mandatory fields

Ensure that the mandatory fields in a record are not empty but contain a proper value, otherwise that record will be skipped during the import process. 

Boolean or checkbox fields

The data you want to import to checkbox fields must contain suitable values that can be properly converted during the import process. The file must contain the data for checkbox fields in the following formats:
  1. If checkbox is selected: True or 1
  2. If checkbox is not selected: False or 0
All the possible values in the dropdown list in your import file must exist in the corresponding field in Bigin. For example, there is a dropdown field named Contact Source in your Contacts module. Before importing contacts, ensure that you have added all the dropdown values in the file to the Contacts module in Bigin. Please note that if the values are not added to Bigin, the record will be imported with the dropdown value but the specific value will not be available in the dropdown field in Bigin. 

Field names

Make sure the first row of data in the import file contains the column headings or field names rather than actual data values. 

Blank rows in the import file

10 consecutive blank rows in the file will be considered the end of the file, so any data after the blank rows will not be imported. Try to avoid blank rows in between rows of data.

Import file size 

The import file's size must not exceed the following limits:
License type
File size for all type of files
5 MB
10 MB
Rows limit for non .csv files (.xls, .xlsx, .vcf)
Rows limit for .csv files

Unique fields

Unique fields help Bigin identify a record that is mapped to a record in another module. 
Example: Contact Name field in the Pipelines module.

Here is a list of standard unique fields in Bigin:
Module Name
Field Name
Company Name
Pipeline Record Name
Product Name

Fields like Contact ID, Company ID, and Pipeline Record ID are generated in Bigin when records are exported. These values are useful for importing records which were previously exported from Bigin. Here is a list of the system-generated unique fields in Bigin:

Module Name

Field Name
Contact ID
Company ID
Pipeline Record ID
Product ID 
Task ID
In addition to these fields, the user can create a maximum of two custom unique fields per module.
Unique fields are not case-sensitive. For example, if the unique field's value in the import file is "ABC" and in an existing record, it is "abc", Bigin will still identify this as a match.

Importing Pipeline Records         

A pipeline record is always created in association with a Company or Contact. So before you import pipeline records into you Bigin account, you must associate them with their parent module ( Contacts or Companies) . This can be done by creating fields in the import file that will contain unique values associated with the parent module. These unique reference fields can be the Company Name, Company ID, Contact name, the Contact ID , or any other unique field.
Points to remember:
  1. If the import file does not have a field for Pipeline and the user has also not mapped the pipeline during import then the system will choose the standard pipeline as the default.
  2. If the import file does not have a field for Sub-Pipeline and the user has also not mapped the sub-pipeline during import then the system will choose the standard sub-pipeline as the default.
  3. The stage value of a particular record should be created in the respective Pipeline before importing the records. If the stage value for a record does not exist in the Pipeline then the record will be skipped during import.
  4. If the user has not mapped the Pipeline field during import and all the pipeline values in the file were not created before importing, the records with no pipeline values will be skipped.  

Importing Tasks

Tasks must be associated with one or more of their parent modules (Contact, Company and Pipelines). Before importing, ensure the import file contains unique reference fields to the Contacts, Companies, and Pipelines modules. Some examples of unique fields are Company Name, Company ID, Contact name, Contact Email, Pipeline Record ID, and Pipeline Record Name.

Order of Import

Once all the conditions in the checklist are met, you can begin importing the records. We recommend administrators import data into the Bigin account in the following order. It is important to follow this order to ensure that all the related records are properly mapped. For example, if you import Pipeline records first, you will not have any company to associate with the pipeline records. So, you must first import Companies, followed by Contacts, and then associate the contacts with the relevant companies. You can then import Pipeline Records and associate them with companies and contacts in your Bigin account.

You should import the modules in the following order:
  1. Companies
  2. Contacts
  3. Products
  4. Pipelines
  5. Notes
  6. Tasks

Stages in the import process 

There are four stages in the import process:

Stage 1: Upload file 

The user must upload a file that satisfies the conditions in the checklist above.

If required, you can change the character encoding from the dropdown list.


Stage 2: Choose an action   

Importing the records can add new records to Bigin and/or update existing ones. Specify whether to add, update, or add and update in this step.
Add as new Records: Choose this option if you would like to import the data as new records in your Bigin account.
There is also an option to skip records from the file that match existing records in your Bigin account. For example, when you import companies, you can skip records by matching the data in the file with fields like Company Name, Company ID, or any other unique fields.

Update existing Records only: Choose this option to only make changes to existing records in your Bigin account. Select a field from the dropdown to identify matching records in Bigin. 
You can also prevent values in Bigin from being overwritten with any empty values in the file by selecting the Don't update empty values for existing records checkbox.

Both : This option allows you to add new records as well as update existing records. Select a field from the dropdown to identify matching records in Bigin. You can choose to skip overwriting fields with empty values.
  1. When you choose update records, the system replaces all existing field values for the matching records, and this action is irreversible
  2. When dealing with Multipicklist/Tags fields, the import file needs to include both the existing and new values.

Stage 3: Map your data  

In this stage of the import process, you must map fields from your file to the fields in Bigin account. There are some options available in this section to help you map the fields:

Create New Fields:  To create a custom field to map records from your import file to your Bigin account.

Mapped Columns: To view the list of fields that are already mapped.
Unmapped Columns: To view the list of fields that are not mapped.

Reset Field Mapping: To undo all the field mapping start again from scratch.
Apply Auto Mapping: To automatically map the fields in the import file with matching fields in Bigin.
Sample Data from File: To verify how the data in the file is to be mapped or imported. The first two valid values from the import file are show here. 

Stage 4: Additional Operations  

Assign record owner
  1. From Mapped Column: Select this option to assign different record owners for the records that you import. You will need to specify the email address or User ID of the Bigin users in a separate column in the import file and map it with the Record Owner field.  
  2. From Bigin: Select this option to assign one user as the record owner for all the records that you import.  
Add tags
  1. From Mapped column: Select this option to add different tags to the record that you import. You need to add the tags in a separate column in the import file and map it with the Tag field.
  2. Add tags: Select this option to add one or more tags to all the records that are imported from the file.

Trigger workflows

This option in the import process allows users to initiate workflows during imports for the Contacts, Companies, Pipelines, and Tasks modules with support for default workflow actions like sending emails, updating fields, adding and removing tags, and creating tasks. This option is not available for the Products module and won't trigger File Cabinet actions or custom actions from widgets. 

Importing records into your Bigin account 

We recommend that you import records into the primary modules Companies and Contacts first, followed by records for Products, Pipelines, Notes and Tasks.
To import records 
  1. Go to the desired module ( Contacts, Companies, Products, Pipelines) module.
  2. Click the drop-down button next to + Contact/Company/Product/Pipeline Record and select Import .
  3. In the Upload your file stage, click Upload or drag and drop your file.
  4. Click Next .
  5. In the Choose an Action section, select one of the following:
    1. Add as New Record
    2. Update Existing Records Only
    3. Both
  6. Click Next .
  7. In the  Map Your Data section, map the fields from your file to the fields in the Bigin account.
  8. Click Next .
  9. In the Additional Options stage, select the record owner and add tags, if required.
  10. Click Finish to start importing.
The import process will run in the background. Once it is completed, you will receive a notification in the bottom-right corner of your Bigin account. This notification will have an option to view a detailed summary of the import. You can also access the summary from the Import History section under the Data Administration settings.

  1. Opting for the "Update existing records only" feature during import removes the ability to reverse changes. Once updated, the alterations become permanent and cannot be reverted.
  2. Selecting the "Both" option allows for an undo feature, but it solely removes newly added records and doesn't reverse modifications made to the existing updated records.

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