Set Up a CSV Import To Integrate ALL Your App Data: Step-By-Step

csv import 1Learn how to create a CSV import for all your retrospective data in this step-by-step tutorial. Keep all your data in sync when you use app integrations with CloudWork.

The great benefit of app integrations is that they help your business create a seamless workflow between business processes:

  • Customers buy something in-store and are automatically added to your contacts database and email promotional campaigns
  • Staff time spent at meetings is automatically recorded with the contact record so you can see how much service your business is providing to each client
  • New service requests are automatically added to your to do lists and project plans.

All of these app integrations remove the need for duplicate data handling and let you keep the focus on productive work rather than data entry and maintaining your data systems.

Our app integrations make sure you never have to duplicate data entry again: but what about all your current data?

Without importing this data you are at risk of running two systems: for example, you may be able to easily search for a full engagement history for recently added contacts in your CRM. CloudWork integrations will make sure all your data is shared as new contacts are added to any of your business apps.

But what about all your older clients? You can see the contact details in your CRM app but will still need to doublecheck Gmail, FreshBooks, MailChimp or Google Calendar for previous engagement history.

You only have to do it once

While CloudWork can take care of all your data entry and task automation from here on out, you may need to create a CSV import to transfer all your existing data from one app to another.

Once you have imported all your data in a CSV file and set up your CloudWork app integration, your data will remain in sync going forward.

Every app has its own way

The problem with CSV imports is that every app has their own way of doing it. Here we provide some examples using a couple of the most common app integrations in our catalog. If you would like us to add a specific example for the integrations you use, please contact us and we will update this blog with a hand-selected example from you.

When integrating your retrospective app data, you will need to:

  • Create a CSV import file of all your data from your source app
  • Import the data into your integrated app

Many apps will have menu options for importing and exporting data under “account” or “settings”. Some CRM apps have options under adding a new contact to directly import a contact list. Please contact us or your business app support service if you are having trouble getting started.

Creating a CSV import file of all your current data

Let’s have a look at moving all your current MailChimp subscribers into your CRM.

1. Open MailChimp and select the Account menu option

csv import 2

2. Select the Export my data option and click the “Build My Data Backup” button

csv import 3

3. A CSV import file will be prepared with all your MailChimp contacts. When it is ready, you will be sent a link to the CSV import file. Download it as a zip file and open it up.

NOTE: Exporting client data from FreshBooks?
If you want to move all your client details from your FreshBooks app instead of MailChimp, select “Account” from the top right hand menu, “Import & Export” from the second level menu and then select “Export to Comma Separated Text File (CSV)”. Select “Clients” from the final page menu. See for more information.

4. You can now choose two ways of importing your subscriber data into your CRM. Let’s use Zoho CRM in the following example. Select the members file from the MalChimp zip. You can open this CSV file in Excel or Google Drive and clean it up before you import it into Zoho CRM (continue with steps 5 onwards). Or you can import the existing file directly into Zoho CRM (skip to step 6 and continue).

5. Open your CSV file in your chosen spreadsheet app (eg. Excel or Google Drive)

csv import 4

You do not need the majority of these columns. Delete the following columns:

  • Employer
  • Member
  • Optin date and IP
  • Both confirm date and IP
  • Latitude
  • Longitude
  • GMT off
  • Timezone
  • CC
  • Region
  • Last Changed.

At this stage, you could also add a column for “Lead Source” and list all of the subscribers as coming from MailChimp.

Save the file as a CSV file and, if using Google Drive, download it.

6. Now open Zoho CRM (or whichever CRM app you are using).

7. In this example, we will be importing subscribers as Contacts, but you could also import them all as Leads. Select “Contacts” from the header menu bar. Click the “Import Contacts” button.

csv import 98. Choose the CSV import file you created in MailChimp (remember, it was the members list file).

csv import 10

9. Sync the fields that you want to connect from MailChimp to Zoho. In this case, we will be matching the fields for the first and last names, and the email address. (You can add lead source if you completed this in step 5.)

csv import 11

10. Click on the “Next” button

11. On the confirmation screen, click the “Import” button

12. Zoho CRM will confirm your data has been added, and if there were any records that could not be added.

csv import 12

Final pointers

  • Set aside some quiet time to do your CSV importing. While it can be mostly straightforward, it does tend to have its own fiddly components that will require your concentration. Set aside distraction-free time (up to an hour of your time), to work solely on the import. This will help keep you focused and let you do this once and then, never again!
  • Remember in some cases you are dealing with hard-won business data. Contacts have trusted you with their personal information because they believe in your business and service. Make sure you treat this data with respect. After you have imported the data into your apps, make sure all CSV files are deleted or stored securely. Subscribe to your apps’ email accounts and twitter feeds to be kept up to date with any security issues regarding how your data is being managed by them. (And just a reminder, we don’t store or access any of your data, we just help you transfer it from one app to another without complex API coding or having to copy it manually each time.)
  • If you have already started using our CloudWork integration to sync your new contact data, you will need to delete these contacts from your CSV file before you import them into your CRM to avoid duplicating your data. It is a good idea to use a CSV import soon after – or even before – setting up your app integrations.

In Part 2 of our tutorial, we will discuss how to import data to and from Google Calendar into a CRM. Please contact us if there is a particular set of data you want to CSV import from one app to another.