21/05/2023 Franck Bugnet Guide

Import csv and xls in PrestaShop catalog

The import of data into PrestaShop is a very common need but not always an easy process. Let's highlight what works and not. Let discover also all the power and benefit of the alternative import solution Merlin Backoffice ® Flex (from PRO plan).

Limits of importing data with PrestaShop

Yes it is possible to import a csv with PrestaShop. But if you read these lines, I imagine that like many others, you faced some if not all of the problems posed by this tool. I will mention only a few:

  • It  crashes often with a 500 error or a time out when trying to import a few hundred lines.
  • It can not handle formats other than CSV (which is not a real standard).
  • It's a little easier since PrestaShop has integrated a column mapping tool, but the requested format remains complex, as for example for attributes. This often requires having to manually rework the files provided by wholesalers.
  • Many bugs, like productd created without an url rewritten, all the products that are stored in the home category, categories that disappear, etc.
  • No flexibility, it is always the entirety of the lines of the file which are imported. For example, you can not validate the settings by importing only the first line for testing.
  • Only ids and references can be used as key. it is missing names, supplier reference, ean and upc barcodes.
  • Aberrations that will eventually slow down your PrestaShop store. For example, the import of specifications (or features), generate hundred of custom features, instead of a few shared features. For example, if you have 10,000 products with 5 common features, that's 50,000 lines added to your database, whereas 5 would have been enough.
  • Complex to automate, with the obligation to go through CRON tasks.
  • It's slow, or very slow ...
Fortunately there is another solution that solves all these issues ...

______The benefits of using Merlin Backoffice ® Flex import addon ______

Process .CSV or Excel files of any size

  • You will never encounter a time-out problem because the software optimizes in real time the size of the SQL queries sent to the server.
  • The record to date is a file of 360,000 product sheets imported at one time by a car parts seller.
  • For very large files, which can crash Windows, it is possible to ask the module to split the processing of the file in packets of lines (for example 8000).

Fast imports, perfect for daily updating of prices and stocks.

  • The import speed is limited mainly by the server and the network and is proportional to the number of columns to process.
  • You have a classic shared server: the average time is 0.3s per line.
  • You have a dedicated server: the speed record, made every day by one of our customers on its dedicated server, is 0.04s per line. Only 7 minutes each night to automatically import or update prices and quantities of 10,000 new products.

Reliable and secure data transfers.

  • You have the freedom to encrypt queries or not.
  • The addon script checks the import success of each line. You can export the import status report.
  • You decide which lines to import or not, which column to process or not. You can test safely on a few lines without having to modify the file.

Innovative catalog import options.

Whether you have your own stock or sell by dropshipping, whether you have 100 or 50,000 products, whether you need to update your records every 2 hours or once a year for sales, Merlin Backoffice will be a success partner:

  • Quantities provided by the file can replace or added to or subtracted from the current stock.
  • Do you work in multiple shops? import into any of them or all the shops simultaneously.
  • A site in multi-languages? tell Merlin in which language to import the data either globally or separately for each row
  • You would like to import only a few lines? use the automatic filters to exclude the other lines.
  • Some data of the file are not correct?  hop, use MagicEdit directly from the interface to bulk correct the data without opening the file.

For e-merchants

  • Ask the program to pick up the listing on your wholesaler's server.
  • Ask Merlin Backoffice to automatically disable, hide or delete stock of obsolete products.
  • The file contains only your purchase price? indicate the desired margin and the module will compute and import for you the optimum selling prices.
  • Indicate once for all products the common info, like the VAT rate.

For photographers

  • Import photos by drag and drop.
  • Automatically create products sheets from a batch of photos without any csv or xls file.
  • Uploading photos is done in the background after the products have been imported. The software gives you back a full control while the images are transferred, you do not have to wait any longer.

Ideal to migrate data from one version of PrestaShop to another version

An addon that handles almost all CSV, XLS, XLSX and multi-sheet formats.

  • Do not worry anymore to understand the requested file format, there is none. The only rule: a file has to be organized in columns, with a unique title for each of them. You can choose your column titles, their order, their number. You can delete them , add some, ignore some ...
  • You got a non-standard .CSV file, with strange column separators, extra quotes ...? let Merlin Backoffice deal with that.
  • The data are located in the 5th sheet of an Excel file, from the 10th line? This is not a problem for this addon, just tell him where are the data to import.
  • No need to download the file from provider's server to your pc, the addon does it for you. He even knows how to choose the most recent file from several self-dated files.

Automatic additions and updates of products at night.

To do so, other import modules will require you to create scripts, and to create cron jobs with them, after having installed a cron module that you will have to learn how to configure. This is too technical and a waste of your time...

Merlin Backoffice integrates its own simple and powerful planner, with which it is possible to plan in a few clicks an unlimited number of unique or repetitive events. With an unlimited choice of the frequency (every x minutes, hours, days, such day of the week or month, etc.) and saved filters.

In the early morning, you will just have to have a look at the detailed report of the night and can devote yourself to your business.

automatic import cron tasks

Import products, but not only ... also import categories, special prices ....

Creating default categories for product listings.

With the "Category Management" option, Merlin Backoffice is able from your product listing, containing the names of their default category, to create these if they do not exist yet. It can also import complete trees, with categories' descriptions and meta SEO fields.

Upload the specific prices.

The sales period is coming and your wholesaler has given you a file with the discounts to put in place in your shop, by tomorrow... Do not worry, Merlin Backoffice replacement pluggin is able to download this data to your database in just a few clicks.

It can also processes a file containing several columns, each containing a volume discounted price for a certain amount purchased, for a specific customers group, location  etc...

Generate combinations.

Finally a simple solution, particularly well suited to the classic files provided by dropshippers. To import the variants of products, you just need a basic file with one column per attribute group (size, color, ...).

This addon can also import new manufacturers and suppliers (names), groups of attributes and features, tags, images ...

One addon for all dropshippers.

Tired of buying an expensive module or a dedicated extension for each new dropshipper that you want to work with?

With Merlin Backoffice PrestaShop addon, you create as many feeds as you want, without any extra spending.

There are no user fees. The licenses are valid for life.

A really complete and easy to use import addon.

With over 90 items (columns) importable, it's the most comprehensive data transfer solution.

The process is linear and simple, in 5 steps:

5 easy steps to import product sheets into PrestaShop

You are an happy owner of a license from PrestaPricing or PrestaCategories? :

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