ImportWizard: Importing products from your database

With ImportWizard you can convert your product database into an online shop with point-and-click ease.

ShopFactory Database Import Wizard allows you to import product data from any database with ODBC or OLE-DB Connectivity.

There is almost nothing you can not import, depending on the version of ShopFactory you have.

ImportWizard will even automatically create a department structure in your shop for you, if the products in your database have been organized into categories in your database.

If the thought of manually entering all your product details from an existing database into a new online shop sounds daunting then the Database Import Wizard is the solution you need.

The differences between ImportWizard Pro and Gold

The basic ShopFactory Pro ImportWizard can import basic product data from comma delimited data files (CSV, TXT) only. It can not import options and choices or images, for example. It is supplied with ShopFactory Pro.

The ImportWizard supplied with ShopFactory Gold can import virtually any field supported by ShopFactory from an existing database, including product options (attributes) and image paths.

ImportWizard Pro can import data from many more databases. It is supplied with ShopFactory Gold.

How to import products

Import Wizard:

If your database includes categories for the products in it or has entries which can be used as categories, then you can import products completely automatically.

In this mode the Wizard will import the products and automatically create the departments required, based on categories in your database.

 If you later re-import the same products, they will be updated regardless of their location.

A department will be created for each category.

However: Each category must have a unique name for this to work. Otherwise departments will be overwriting each other. The wizard can also create sub-departments. Simply create the sub-departments by separating them from the parent department with a / . This requires ImportWizard Pro.

The uniqueness of products are determined by the "Item Number" field of the ShopFactory.

You need to map the column in the database your importing from. If any item has an empty "Item Number", Import wizard will assign a value to such item such as 'genid_xx' where xx is an integer value, and the assigned values for two of such items are distinguished from each other.

Note of caution:
Let us say you are selling computers and you have hardware for PCs and Apple. In your existing database you have categories which define a product as PC or Apple, and sub categories which state if it is software or hardware.

If you now select sub category as category for the import (after all it is the closest category describing the product), then the two departments will be joined in ShopFactory, as Import Wizard can not tell them apart since both are called Hardware) . It would need a category listing such as PC/ hardware and Apple/hardware to tell them apart — or semi manual import where you have to adjust this in ShopFactory after the import.

Semi Automatic import

Import Wizard:

This method allows you to completely control, which products go into which departments of your shop.

  • Start by launching ShopFactory.
  • Now create the department structure for your new shop (even better if you have done this on paper first). This means you create all the departments in your shop, which will contain the products.
  • Where necessary create sub-departments. This will make it easy for the customer to navigate to the product he is searching for.
  • Save the shop file.
  • Close ShopFactory.

When you now use the import wizard, you will import the product information directly into the departments. So in the Wizard you select the department, then you locate the products in your existing database, and click on the + button, to add the selected Products automatically to the selected department.

Import stock levels

Import Wizard:

If you have an external list of stock levels, you can easily import it into ShopFactory to update your stock levels with Import Wizard.

You only have to know the SKU (Catalog number) and the stock level available to update the stock levels of the appropriate product in ShopFactory.

See Stock control / Inventory settings.

Departments & Sub-departments

Import Wizard:

Department and Sub-departments can be specified in the database.

For a product to be imported into the sales sub-department in the test department;
'test/sales' should be the department field.

Updating information imported earlier

Import Wizard:

If you have imported product information from an existing database, you may want to at times update some of the information in ShopFactory, for example by importing only updated prices.

This works of course best in fully automatic import mode, but can also be done in semi automatic mode.

Simply open the Wizard, select the configuration file created for the first import, and go to the mapping tool.

Map the product name and if required the category, the price and any other fields which need updating. If you do not want information to be re-imported, for example because you have made changes in ShopFactory which you do not want to have overwritten, simply de-select these fields by setting the drop down menu to display the empty field.

Then continue with the import, as with a new import.

The fields that can be imported

Import Wizard:

Your ImportWizard can import most product and page information.

Below you will find a list all all supported data types.

Here you will find some sample files: Download samples file

Field Name Syntax Sample Explanation
Product Name Text ShopFactory Gold Product title
Item Number Numerical-alphabet 2001 or SF-Gold Catalog number / SKU
Department Name Text Software To create sub-departments separate departments with a / such as Women/Shoes
Product Description Text A great tool to build and maintain online shops
Product Image Full path file name C:\User\Spring\12Roses.jpg Import product images from your hard-drive into your shop
More images Full path file name delimited by either ~| or new line. C:\User\Spring\flower1.jpg~|C:\User\Spring\flower2.jpg Import more images for your product from your hard-drive into your shop.
Price Floating point value 1000.00
Special Text Summer Sales Text to announce a special
Weight Floating point value 12.0 You must use the weight unit set up in your shop
Tax Text GST, VTS, or My Local Tax 1 Defines which tax set up in ShopFactory will be applied
Link Full path file name C:\images\link_img.bmp A link to a larger image or file or URL
Link Type Integer value 1 = a local file, 2=a URL file Defines if the Link item above is on the local computer or online
Link Caption Text Caption text A text caption for the larger image
Headline Text ShopFactory Gold is a winner
Product Visible Integer value 0 or 1 0= invisible, 1= visible
Longer description Text This is a really great product and you should buy it.
Highlights Text A great feature is ImportWizard
Discount Type Integer value 1 or 2 apply (1)discount price or (2) quantity discount
Discount Price Floating point value 998.00
Quantity Discount (from|To|Percentage) (0|10|2.5)(10|500|5.0)(500|5000|7.0)
Product code Numerical-alphabet Sf_001 A code which allows grouping products based on a specific type
Manufacturer code Numerical-alphabet Nec101 The SKU or Catalog number used by the Manufacturer
 Manufacturer Text  Sony   Manufacturer name
Price code Numerical-alphabet 2K100

A code which allows grouping products based on a specific type for example to apply discounts

Available Quantity Integer Value 1000
Min Order Quantity Integer Value 1
Max Order Quantity Integer Value 12
Out of Stock Message Text Prod A is out of stock, try again later!
Quantity Unit Text Carton, kg, lt
Allow decimal quantities such as 1.5 Integer value 0=NO, 1=Yes Defines if a product can be purchased in decimal quantities rather than in numbers only
Show Add to Basket Integer value 0=NO, 1=Yes If set to 0 the product is displayed but has no buy now button
EAN13 EAN13 number 590123123457 An International product code - EAN, UPC, UCC or similar 
Delivery time Text 5 - 7 days Specify the estimated delivery time
Economy Floating Point value 7.2
Air Floating Point value 15.4
Express Floating Point value 26.5
Product SEO Description Text Detailed View Meta tag description
Product SEO Keywords Text shop,gadget Detailed View Meta tag keywords
Product HTML Title Text Product 1  Product HTML Title 
Page SEO Description Text Page Meta tag description
Page SEO Keywords Text shop,gadget  Page Meta tag keywords
Page HTML Title Text Page Title Page HTML Title
Product filename Text candle-vanilla Product filename

For the Product filename field

If the product title is set to be imported, the product filename will be set only if the filename is currently blank in the database.

If the above is to happen, the filename will be made lower case.

Allow to explicitly import the "Product filename" which will be made lower case as shown in this mapping dialog.


Importing Option and Choices

Import Wizard:

An example file to see how to set up a database with option & choices is "exop.xls".

This has 2 options and 3 choices for each product.

Choose the maximum number of different options available for the products and the maximum number of choices to be offered for any of these options.

For example: 1 Option & 2 Choices You will need a column for each of the following:

Option name 01 The name of first Option (eg: Size).
Option checked 01

This field is a number which controls a range of things about the option including;

  • If an option is shown in the shop.
  • if a customer must select if before ordering a product or
  • if it is disabled in ShopFactory after the import.

Below are the values you can use:

 Option Type Visible       Visible and required              Off
 Drop down list (Default)        11 12 10
 Radio button 21 22 20
Text field 31 32 30
Text Area 41 42 40
Check box 51 52 50


Entering the value 22 in the field will create an option which uses a radio button to select it. The option will be visible in the shop and required.  

To setup the first choice as selected: Prepend a 1 to the “Option checked” field for ImpWizard to make the First or Selected choice flag 'on' for Dropdown and Radio, and ticked for Checkbox option style. Prepend a 0 (zero) to explicitly state the flag should be off. It is not necessary to have this leading 0. That is, 011 is equivalent to 11. Note: Only applicable to Dropdown, Radio, and Checkbox types.

Choice name 01  The name of first choice (eg: Small).
Choice price 01 The extra amount to be added to the product price for the first choice in the first option.
Choice order no 01 The order number for the first choice in the first option.
Choice weight 01 The added weight for the first choice in the first option.
Choice Available Quantity 01 The available stock quantity for the first choice in the first option.
Choice Minimum Quantity 01 The minimum order quantity for the first choice in the first option.
Choice Maximum Quantity 01 The maximum order quantity for the first choice in the first option.
Choice name 02 The name of second choice (eg: Small).
Choice price 02 The extra amount to be added to the product price for the second choice in the first option.
Choice order no 02 The order number for the second choice in the first option.
Choice weight 02 The added weight for the second choice in the first option.
Choice Available Quantity 02 The available stock quantity for the second choice in the first option.
Choice Minimum Quantity 02 The minimum order quantity for the second choice in the first option.
Choice Maximum Quantity 02 The maximum order quantity for the second choice in the first option.

Importing product Specifications

Import Wizard:

Choose the maximum number of specifications available for the products.

For example: 4 Specifications

You will need a column for each of the specification Name and specification description.

Specifications name 00 The name of first Specification (eg: Bike Frame).
Specifications description 00ALUXX SL grade aluminium, Maestro 90mm travel, Boost
Specifications name 01 The name of second Specification (eg: Bike Fork).
Specifications description 01RockShox Recon Silver RL, Air, 15x110 Maxle Stealth, 100mm travel, Boost
Specifications name 02 The name of third Specification (eg: Bike Shock).
Specifications description 02Rockshox Deluxe Select+ RT, Solo Air, Trunnion mount
Specifications name 03 The name of fourth Specification (eg: Bike Brakes).
Specifications description 03Shimano MT410 hydraulic disc, Fr:180mm, Rr: 160mm