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How to bulk upload inventory

Auctiva Commerce allows you to bulk upload your store inventory. This feature allows you to import numerous inventory items from a tab delimited text file. This tutorial will show you how to bulk upload inventory.

What is a tab delimited text file?

A tab delimited text file (.txt or .tsv) is a file that contains a data table. The data table consists of rows containing cells that are separated by tabs (i.e., entering a tab by pressing the Tab key). The first row is the header information for each column (e.g., Name, Price, SKU, etc.). Each row that follows the first row is the product data for each inventory item. Tab delimited text files can be imported, edit and created in Microsoft Excel. However, you should not update the file format if prompted by Microsoft Excel. The updated document will not be valid.

Inventory File Requirements

The tab delimited text file will need to meet the file requirements so that it will properly import. The maximum amount of products that can be uploaded at once is 5,000 products with Auctiva Commerce hosted images or 2,000 products with externally-hosted images. You should download the sample file so that you can see the required fields or skip to the Field Description section below to see a list of all the fields. If you have a pre-existing data file with your inventory, the document will need to conform to these requirements. Follow these instructions to download and view the sample file:

Step 1. Download sample file.
  • In Administration, go to Inventory> Bulk Upload Inventory. The Import Products page will load.
  • Click on the "Click Here to Download" button to get the Sample File.
  • Choose to open the file with your preferred application and click on the Ok button. In this tutorial, we will open the file in Microsoft Excel. If you want to use a different application, you can choose to save the file and try opening it with your preferred application.
Step 2. View sample file with Microsoft Excel.
  • Microsoft Excel will automatically launch. A warning message will most likely display that prompts you that the file format is using a different extension. Click on the Yes button to open the file.
  • You may also need to specify that the document is a tab delimited text file and that the first row is the header information for the columns in the table.
  • Once the file is loaded into Excel, you will see all the required columns.

In Microsoft Excel, the columns in row 1 are required in every inventory file you upload to Auctiva Commerce. You’ll also find two test products in rows 2 and 3. Use these test products as an example of the type of data that goes in each cell. The only columns in this table that require data in the product information rows (i.e., row 2 and greater) is the first two columns: Name and Price. All other columns are optional.

You can use Microsoft Excel to add new products to this file. In Excel, go to File> Save As and choose "Text (Tab delimited)" from the "Save as type" drop-down box. The file will be saved as a text file (.txt) and place tabs between the cell data. Now, you can upload this file and import your inventory.

Field Descriptions

Here is a list of all the fields (required and optional) that are in the inventory upload file:

  • Name: (Required) Name of the product.
  • Price: (Required) Price of the product.
  • SKU: (Optional) SKU for the product.
  • MSRP: (Optional) MSRP for the product.
  • Manufacturer Part Number: (Optional) Manufacturer Part Number for the product.
  • Featured: (Optional) Defines whether or not the product is featured on the storefront Home page. The default value is False. Set the value to True to feature the product.
  • Exclude From Feeds: (Optional) Manufacturer Part Number for the product. The default value is False. Set the value to True to exclude the product from feeds.
  • Shippable: (Optional) Defines whether or not the product can be shipped. The default value is 0 (no). Set to 0 for "no," 1 for "yes" and 2 for "seperately."
  • Length: (Optional) Length of the product.
  • Width: (Optional) Width of the product.
  • Height: (Optional) Height of the product.
  • Weight: (Optional) Weight of the product.
  • Cost of Goods: (Optional) Cost of Goods for the product.
  • Min Sale Quantity: (Optional) Minimum sales quantity for the product.
  • Max Sale Quantity: (Optional) Maximum sales quantity for the product.
  • Product Summary: (Optional) A brief description of the product.
  • Description: (Optional) The full product description.
  • More Details: (Optional) An extended description of the product.
  • HTML HEAD: (Optional) Meta Data for the product.
  • Search Keywords: (Optional) Internal search keywords for the product.
  • Primary Image URL: (Optional) The URL for the Primary image of the product.
  • Product Image Alt Text: (Optional) Primary image Alt-Text for the product.
  • Image 2 URL: (Optional) The URL for the second image of the product.
  • Image 2 Alt Text: (Optional) Second image Alt-Text for the product.
  • Image 3 URL: (Optional) The URL for the third image of the product.
  • Image 3 Alt Text: (Optional) Third image Alt-Text for the product.
  • Image 4 URL: (Optional) The URL for the Fourth image of the product.
  • Image 4 Alt Text: (Optional) Fourth image Alt-Text for the product.
  • Image 5 URL: (Optional) The URL for the Fifth image of the product.
  • Image 5 Alt Text: (Optional) Fifth image Alt-Text for the product.
  • ISBN: (Optional) ISBN value for the product. The unique 10- or 13-digit number assigned to every printed book.
  • UPC: (Optional) Universal Product Code for the product. Universal Product Code is a 12 digit number often below the bar code of the item.


  • *** Note that the Optional fields noted above in the data file do not have to be populated but they should not be deleted from the header row (1st row) of the upload file.



    *** Also note that the Name field cannot accept all special characters for security reasons. The following special characters may be included in the Name field:



    ! & " ' \ / ( ) [ [ - # $ % ^ @ ` ~ * + ; :

    How to bulk upload inventory

    Successfully uploaded inventory will automatically set the visibility value to "Private." This will prevent your newly upload inventory from appearing on your storefront. You can use the Bulk Editing feature to change the visibility setting for all these items. Read the Bulk Editing tutorial for more information. You may upload a document with up to 5,000 products without images or up to 2,000 products with external images.

    Step 1. Upload inventory file.
    • Go to Inventory> Bulk Upload Inventory. The Import Products page will load.
    • Click on the Browse button to find the inventory file.
    • Navigate to the file and click on it to select the file.
    • Click on the Open button.
    • Click on the Upload button to upload the inventory file you’ve selected.
    • A confirmation message will appear. If there are any errors in the file, the errors will report in this message. Make changes to the file as necessary and retry uploading the file. Once a valid inventory file is successfully uploaded, you will see the inventory in the "Import" folder in the inventory categories. It may take up to a couple of hours before your inventory is imported.

    This completes the task of bulk uploading inventory.

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